After four months in Europe, the 3CMGM’ers are heading off to their respective countries and families to celebrate Christmas and repack their suitcases. Some travel a bit more in Europe first, discovering the places they want to see before heading home. Some want to stay in Belgium a bit longer and others fly to Kenya or take the train to the UK. I, myself, am writing this blog post on an airplane to Alicante, from where my dad, my brother and I will make the familiar one-hour drive to our holiday home.
3CMGM has been amazingly unexpected and unexpectedly amazing. There was work and fun, there were ups and downs, there were company visits and lecture days. We have cursed each other during group works while chasing deadlines and have had struggled and bended in every way to keep the positive dynamic in the group. We have celebrated birthdays and traditional holidays, learned how to order a beer the Belgian way, how to dance Indian-style and to eat like the Africans do. But we are also still learning to accept the differences in the way we are and do things, but it is an interesting and rewarding journey for sure.
Seeing as our class always takes the time to celebrate things every chance we’ve got, last Thursday, our class also made an event of our farewells. During our walking tapas dinner, I over-ate on patatas bravas (my favorite) and enjoyed some delicious wine and cava! We swapped our Secret Santa gifts, which was more fun than I could have ever imagined. Lots of hugs were shared as well (yes, also with some of our professors that we came to cherish and love – and you especially, Banu!).
I didn’t cry, though, because I know I will see my friends again very soon (I admit, usually I am a real cry baby on moments like these)! But having lived, worked and traveled so closely together, it will be extremely weird to be apart for two weeks. Some of us will gather in Goa to celebrate New Year’s Eve at the Sunburn festival and some will celebrate at home. I, personally, will be freaking out again about skies full of beautiful Spanish Christmas lights and NYE’s fireworks above the Christmas trees which stand next to the palm trees… ( Because seriously, how do you ever get used to that?!).
I started 3CMGM with not too many expectations and that has really been a good thing. It has protected me from disappointments and has caused many surprising moments. And besides gaining more economic and business knowledge, I have learned what my best qualities and working points are in a way that you can only really discover in a program like this. Moreover, I have learned to be more patient and am still practicing “to let go”. As a control freak, India will be both a challenging and liberating experience for me (I hope). I will miss a lot of people from AMS (especially my colleagues/friends from AMSlife), and I will miss the Foyer and our classroom, and the free coffee and cookies, and the evenings at Patje’s and… But I am also very much looking forward to getting on that plane to Bhubaneswar in January!!
So for now I say: Farewell, AMS! And farewell, 3CMGM!
(This article was for publication on AMSlife, the student platform of the Antwerp Management School for which I was one of the pioneering ambassadors.