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E Eastbourne 2017
16.05.2017 22.37 Uhr

Eastbourne 2017, April 1st to April 6th

The 1st of April was our day of departure, at 6:30 we were supposed to be at the Kronberg parking lot. Easily said, the hard thing was waking up, since many of us were too excited to sleep or still busy packing checking everything twice. Even though there was a lot of sleepiness, we all made it on time. At 7:00 am we all sat in the bus and drove off. Some parents shed a tear or two because they would not see their kids for a week. The drive from Kronberg-Gymnasium to the French Border went by without any special occurance. At the border we learned that we need our original ID-card or at least our passport. Bottom line, you can't cross the border with a fotocopy with the original safely stored in your suitcase. Thanks to this incident we missed our ferry and were stuck at the border for one and a half hours. As we finally were on the ferry, some of us were fascinated by the Indian passengers who were dancing and singing on deck.  As we got close to the British coast, the landscape was amazing, with its chalk cliffs and the little harbour. After what felt like forever we finally arrived at our guest families. After a small dinner we dropped dead in our beds and slept.
The next day we were off to London. We went by bus to Greenwich and then boarded the river cruise at Greenwich Pier. On the way from Greenwich Pier to Westminster Pier, we saw London Bridge, Tower Bridge, the Cheesegrate and some other impressive buildings. After we left the boat at Westminster Pier, we went for a walk through London. We walked along the Westminster Bridge, passed the Royal Guards on their horses. It is astonishing how they are able to stay in that position for so long without moving a single limb. We stopped again at Covent Garden Market where we got two hours to do what we wanted. Some of us went shopping, others enjoyed the entertainment program displayed at the Market, a small part of the group went to get food and the remaining part of the group just sat at the meeting point and got some sun. Two hours later we met up again and walked to the Underground Station, where we took the Tube to the Tower of London. Since our huge group was so big, we split up into smaller groups and went off exploring the Tower. In the tower there were many different exhibits, for example the Crown Jewels or the Line of Kings. Sadly we only had a limited amount of time that we could spend in the tower due to the fact that we still needed to get home to our guest families before nine thirty. So after an hour spent in the Tower, we left to get back to Greenwich Pier where our bus driver was waiting for us. This time, though, we didn't take the boat, but took the Tube and then walked, and like that we even ended up walking through a tunnel which lies underneath the River Thames. It took us half an hour to get from the Tower to Greenwich, and after this long walk, everyone was glad to get on the bus and rest their feet.
On April 3rd we went to Eastbourne. The moment we arrived, our teacher gave us ralley forms and we took off in groups of three to six. Every group had their own way of filling out their forms. Some actually went from station to station and tried their best to complete it, others did a few stops and then started asking Google and last but not least there were the people who went shopping and then ended up sitting in a coffee shop and their ralley forms were just copied from others. After we met up with the teachers again to turn in the forms, we hopped on the bus and got a guided bus tour through Eastbourne and then to the cliffs. The group had fun walking on the chalk rocks. After half an hour spent at the beach, we went back to Eastbourne and got free time to go out for lunch and then be lazy at the pier. At 5:30 we drove back to our guest families and learned more about English way of life.
On Tuesday we went to Brighton. After a short stroll through the famous Lanes we got an audio guided tour through the Royal Pavilion, which looks from the outside like an Indian Temple but inside the guests feel like being in China, because of the decorations of dragons and bamboo. The audio tour took around two hours, which left us with one hour to walk through the Lanes or the North Laine. At 3:30 we went to the cliffs again, but this time we actually hiked all the way up and our bus driver picked us up a few miles later. During the hike the cliffs went on and on, so it was a constant up and down. You can get spectacular views, though. Like on the first day in London, however, everyone was glad to sit down after this hike and everyone just wanted to get home and rest.
On our last day before departure on Thursday we went to London again, this time by train. Having arrived at Victoria Station, we walked to the Globe Theatre also known as Shakespeare’s Globe. An actor who works at the theatre showed us around and explained a few things about it. After the tour, the group had free time and many from our group went to Oxford Street to shop. At around five we met our teachers again. We walked through Green Park to Buckingham Palace and saw the Royal Guards standing at their posts, not moving. Back at Victoria Station we took our train back to Eastbourne, where our bus driver was expecting us, so he could take us to our guest families one last time. As we arrived, we all started packing since we had to be at the meeting point at 7:30 on Thursday, so we would have enough time to check that everyone was there and all suitcases to be stored. At eight we left Eastbourne and started our journey back to Germany. On the way home we didn't miss the ferry like on the way to England, because this time the teachers triplechecked that everyone had their original ID with them in the bus and not in their luggage. The relief was big, but the joy of finally getting home after this exciting, but busy trip, was huge.
Jessica Reymann, 10d

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