Friday, February 1, 2013

Notes from Bremen

Dear friends,

This is Kıvanç from Rotaract Club of Galatasaray. I was one of the lucky six people to have a chance to visit Bremen and meet members of Rotaract Club of Bremen. I'd like to say a few words regarding our visit.

As most of you already know, we, as Rotaract Club of Galatasaray have been carrying out many joint projects and activities with Rotaract Club of Bremen, since the beginning of this term. Led by one of the former members of Galatasaray, Emre Adam, we've done joint house parties that we called Dinner Challenges, in which we cooked each others traditional cuisine. We also skyped at the same time. Then, we created this blog. "The Twin Club Experiment" has had thousands of visitors from all around the world.

These were things you already knew. Now, I'd like to write details of our trip to Bremen.

We, the crew of Galatasaray, consisting of Me, Emir, Efe, Ayşegül, Anıl and Fatih, met at the Istanbul Atatürk Airport at the morning of January 25th, Friday. We checked in, went through passport control, and then had a little chat till our gate is open. We've talked about Air Crash Investigation Series on National Geographic Channel. We concluded that the probability of a plane's falling down has decreased a lot over the years passed. We've found a giant screw near the aircraft, but luckily it was of no problem.

We've landed in the pretty airport of Bremen in 3 hours. The city looked white and incredibly nice. Tim, the president of Rotaract Club of Bremen, was at the airport to welcome us. We left our luggages at Emre's Place and had a little city tour. Weather was a bit chilly (around -10 celcius) and there were snow on the ground. Sun was standing at somewhat lower position than what we used to know, making the whole city look like a huge movie set. On the very first day, as soon as we arrived, we were fascinated by the city. Although the city is a bit small, it was fantastic! And despite the cold weather, the streets were indeed warm!

After the short city tour I was talking about, we finished the day at Marlen's Place with a great house party. We were 17 people in total at the house that day. We chatted about ourselves and our countries, and tried to get to know each other. That house party was also the 4th Dinner Challenge. We ate the sauce prepared by tuna fish first, and the one with yogurt, which was quite similar to what we call haydari. There were 2 recipes for challenge: Köfte and Pancakes. The question was, who was going to eat that much food? But that problem is resolved by itself, all köftes were gone within 5 minutes. After köftes, we cooked pancakes and ate them all as well! To sum up, that night was hilarious.

On Saturday, the second day, we were 10 people at the beginning. We took a longer trip of city. Seen the great buildings in Bremen in detail. Then, we visited Beck's Brewery. During the brewery tour, we've learned a lot about their awards, history and details of production. At the end of the brewery visit, they offered us their beers, the ones with lemon, lime, sprite, orange, and some more. That was a great chance to see the headquarters of one of the most well-known beers in the world.

We continued to wander around Bremen. We were 12 people at that moment. We took an "End Polio Now" picture in front of the famous Musicians of Bremen. We had a dinner in a nice restaurant and then went to Emre's Place to have a mini house party. We drank tea and ate chocolate. We've talked about details of dolls that we brought from Istanbul. We've talked about our countries. We've talked about TV series and movies. That night was great too. We had a lot of fun.

On Sunday, we were 9 people at Hamburg. We had a coffee with DRR of District 1850. Wandered around Hamburg, seen the city from 70 meters high cathedral tower, walked below the river through a tunnel, ate great food again and went back to Bremen by train.

On Monday, we did shopping, drank coffee, prepared for the meeting and went to meeting hall. We were 28 people at the meeting hall, including Guvernor of Rotary District 1850 and Previous Guvernor of Rotary District 1850. Johanna showed their presentation first, then Ayşegül showed our presentation.

Then, Ayşegül, President of Rotaract Club of Galatasaray and Tim, President of Rotaract Club of Bremen, have signed the Twin Club Agreement in the presence of District Guvernor. By signing this document, we, Rotaract Club of Galatasaray and Rotaract Club of Bremen, have officialy become twin clubs! That was a great moment for us. In our belief, this document is not only a piece of paper. Indeed, it is the symbol of our friendship that will last forever.

We were able to visit the great exhibition of Hundertwasser on Tuesday morning. Then we said farewell to each other and Friederike has guided us to the airport. We've landed in Istanbul safe and sound.

Now, we're waiting for members of Rotaract Club of Bremen to visit Istanbul too! You can make sure that you will be more than welcome in our hometown!

Here, I'd like to thank all members of my club who came to Bremen, who helped in the organization of this trip, and who participated in our joint projects with Rotaract Club of Bremen.

Also, I'd like to thank to all members of Rotaract Club of Bremen for the trip! You've put great effort in this visit in order to make it as much fun as possible, and you all were just perfect! It was a great experience for all of us to meet you. Thanks!

And also, I'd like to thank all Rotarians who did come to our joint meeting and helped us spreading the word.

Lastly, I'd like to say "Thanks a lot!" for the one who leaded both clubs to create great friendship bonds. He spent a lot of time on the relationship between clubs. Thanks a lot Emre! We're happy that we followed your ideas!

Thank you guys, for having us as guests! It was a great experience! Don't forget, you're always welcome in Istanbul!

All the best,

1 comment:

  1. Such a great post:) I will read and read it again everytime I'd like to remember our days in Bremen:)