Ryan Eisenbock: Switzerland
Right away, I felt at home here in Olten. Switzerland as a whole has many similarities to Vancouver such as the landscape and the pure beauty of the country. It felt comfortable, almost too comfortable at first however, within the first couple weeks I started to notice many differences. The most obvious is that they speak Swiss German, which might be the most confusing language to get adjusted too. It’s another breed of German, which was very challenging at first, but you pick up on it as you go. The other staggering difference is just the cost of every day things. At this point it’s humorous, but if you don’t know tricks it can be startling. But don’t worry the price is worth the admission.
What can I say about Olten? Well, its small… but has a lot of character and is truly beautiful! Roughly 17000 people is massive change from living in Vancouver, but I really enjoy it. Life has slowed down, there’s no rush, no panic, its perfect. If you feel inclined to feel the rush or need some big city life, Zurich and Basel are only 20 minutes away by train. Both these cities are incredibly cool and absolutely beautiful. Probably my favorite thing about Olten is the location, its located perfectly in Switzerland and also Europe. The first weekend I was here, I trained cross-country to ski with my friend at his place in Davos! Imagine that, 24 hours after landing in Switzerland I was already skiing in the Alps, check that off the bucket list. Our school is amazing as well, with incredibly friendly people. My living situation couldn’t be more ideal; having 20 new roommates is pretty amazing! It is now a home away from home.
Ryan is a third year Bachelor of Business Administration student studying abroad at the University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland in Olten, Switzerland.