PART II – Becoming a local
My Erasmus life in Estonia is going pretty well. I met a lot of new people and got to know Estonian culture much better. My favourite activities here are winter swimming, going to the sauna, and hiking in nature. The first time I heard about winter swimming from an Estonian friend, I thought it was a joke because nobody will go swimming in this cold weather, but luckily for me, it was a real thing. We went swimming near Noblessner Port, the air temperature was around -1, and the sea temperature was around 5 degrees. Once you get inside the water, it is very cold and you swim for a very short period of time, but when you get out of the water you feel warm despite the cold temperature. After our swim, we went to a bar for a hot chocolate. I would recommend every Erasmus student to try this because it is a local thing and it is special.
Besides having fun with friends and attending lectures, I am also doing my internship in a FinTech startup. My goal of an Erasmus study was also to get some practical knowledge in the field of my interest. I work in a company that develops software solutions for financial institutions. My job is to talk to potential clients and present our product. My studies at EBS are going great, the only downside is that lectures are online, and students can not do networking and meet other people on the faculty. My favourite lecture is about quantitative and qualitative methods in research. For me, it is very useful because it will help me in writing my Master’s thesis when I get back home. To be honest, I did not try any of the Estonian home cuisines, I only tried delicious Estonian black bread, which I eat almost every day. It is a special type of bread with a lot of grains inside and it has a rich taste when you mix it with butter or jelly if you want to eat something sweet. You can buy it in almost every bigger store like Selver for example. I’m from Croatia and I chose Tallinn because I wanted to go to a place with a different climate and Estonia is perfect, but the thing I miss the most about my country is my friends and summertime on our beautiful coastline of Croatia.
My biggest problem in Estonia was the very icy roads, on which I had to fall a few times before I learned to walk like a true Estonian.
Because of the COVID situation, all the clubs in Estonia were working during the daytime, so my friends and I would go partying during the day, which was at first very unusual, but it is actually even better because then you don’t come home early in the morning and therefore you have more time. The club we visited was Hall, and it is one of the biggest clubs in Tallinn with several dancing floors. It is a great place to party with all the Erasmus people.