By Robyn, exchange student from South Africa to Germany
Nearly sixteen months ago I was given the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of an exchange to Germany. Before I tell a story of an amazing day with the perfect (host) family and the best of friends, I would just like to say that this exchange was the most spectacular experience I have had so far in my life and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity!
Now. On July thirteenth of 2014, it was the Soccer World Cup finals. Germany versus Argentina. I won’t lie and say that I happen to be a huge soccer fan, because I’m not. But this was the day that I really began to understand how amazing the Germans truly are.
At 4:30pm that day, my sister, my brother and I left the house to catch a train with a few of our friends into the city. We were on our way to what they called a “public viewing”. This is when I became a temporary soccer fan. I had never seen so any supporters for anything in a single place before. It was truly breathtaking. As I stood in the stadium with at least a thousand other people waiting for the match that would be projected onto a large screen to start, I became excited for the game to begin.
I was excited to watch Germany play Argentina, and I was excited to be a part of the support group that the public viewing was for that final match.
Watching Germany win the World Cup
As the game started I cheered, and screamed, and booed about what was happening in the match along with those around me. And as the game was coming to an end with a score of 0-0, I was among those holding their breaths and praying for that winning goal. That goal for Germany came during overtime. Our prayers were answered and Germany was the 2014 FIFA World Cup Champions.
Celebrations started almost spontaneously. People were dancing. They were singing. They were cheering. These celebrations happened all over the city- in the stadium, on the streets, in people’s houses. The pride that was visible from the Germans for their country was undeniably present, and it was beautiful.
It was something that I believe all people should strive to have in their own countries. It was a blessing to be able to be a part of those celebrations. To be a part of a German family, to be in Germany with some of the best people I know- at such an important milestone for the country. This was Germany’s fourth world cup win.
And now, almost sixteen months later, I can look back at that day. I can take out my soccer shirt, the tickets used to get into the stadium, and all of the pictures. I can look at all of this stuff and remember how amazing that experience was for me and I know that this is a story that will stay with me for the rest of my life.