The beginning of the greatest adventure of our lives

Loud noise, teenagers talking, laughing, reading and sleeping. Some are carrying around their luggage and some are hugging their parents for the last time in the next seven months. These are the first things I see when I come to the bus to go to Kiel. A thousand thoughts are running through my head. This is real. The experience I was working towards this whole time, the trip I was excited about for months, it´s really here. I´m actually saying goodbye to my family, my old life and my old self. Excitement, hope, but also a bit of fear is going through me. In front of me there are a lot of challenges and homesickness on the one hand, great adventures, breath-taking views and amazing friendships on the other. How am I going to change? Will I be more confident, organized and brave?

As soon as I sit down, all my worries disappear and I can´t stop laughing with the people around me. We´re discussing how the next six months are going to be like, what we wish for and what we´re most excited about. The bus drive is long but fun. Once we have arrived in Marina Wendtorf, everyone is running around, greeting people and unloading their things. I´m looking around. These people will be my constant rock in this stormy sea of new experiences for the next six and a half months. We will all get to know each other individually, learn each other’s moods and secrets, laugh together and hold each other when things get hard. I can truthfully see us all growing into one big family and I can´t wait to share my most important memories with them.

The next days are going by fast, we move into our little flats and are informed about which projects we´ll be working on for the whole trip. I´m fulfilled with happiness because I get my dream project “public relations”, in which we present our project “classroom under sails” to other people. My group and I are discussing how we want to manage the blog entries and how to structure our future podcast. This one-and-a-half-hour session shows again that when people have fun with their job and are willing to put their whole heart in it, work goes by very fast and doesn´t feel exhausting or stressing at all. In general, you really can feel that everyone connects immediately. We all sit down together to write our diaries in the evenings, tell each other about our lives at home and are laughing the whole day long. While we all get to know each other we´re quite busy with our jobs to get our ship ready. Some are filling the ship with food, some are cleaning every single room, others are filling our library with books or are sorting the navigations maps. We also need to organize our donations and bikes for Cuba and cook for everyone. It´s a lot of work but we always have an idea how to have most fun while doing it. My personal highlight of the last four days was definitely biking for an hour, to see the “Thor Heyerdahl”, the ship which is going to be our new home, for the very first time. I´m not lying when I tell you that we all stood there with goosebumps, before we were all jumping and screaming around with excitement. It´s been a long way to this moment and the realisation finally kicked in, we will actually sail the world.

You may think sailing on a traditional sailing ship without any experience, with people I´ve only known for a short amount of time, in regions I’ve never been to before, sounds scary, but I’ve never been happier or more excited about anything. This is my dream and I want to learn everything about sailing and about the people who are going to be with me. I can´t wait to get started with it all.