Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Portuguese university / FEUP== Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto

Romy and her friends in Coimbra had already told me that to eat in the uni's dining hall (German: Mensa) costs only 1,85€ including a main plate, a soup, water, a bread (Brötchen) and a dessert. Still I was a bit confused when I first went to eat at the student's dining hall at the faculty of Engineering in Porto. In Porto a full meal costs 1,90€ (who wants 5cents of change every day anyways?). But I wasn't so sure of it's „make-up“ so I missed on my dessert the first day. You get a soup, a glass of very diluted orange lemonade non-carbonated (ohne Kohlensäure) a main plate consisting of meat, fish or vegetables (that's the vegetarian plate) together w/ either rice, home-made French fries, potatoes or noodles and a salad. They put the fork, knife, spoon in a small plastic bag, same for the bread. But the funniest thing that happened to me when I ate in the uni dining hall for the first time and that made me feel as if I was in an American movie... One of the students let something drop that then broke w/ a shrieking sound. Then... synchronously all the other students shouted something. Unfortunately I didn't understand what they were shouting. But I was amazed by their timing and by the phenomenom itself. I felt like bursting out in laughter but I surpressed that feeling. Mark (the half-German) told me that the dining hall of the economics faculty (which is next to the engineering faculty, in the next building) is the best. So the next days we mostly ate there. FEUP has more girls than I've ever seen in TUB (Technical University Berlin)... and it's ONLY an engineering faculty. Mark said most of them are in their first yrs and that back then there weren't too many girls either. Also most of them are in civil engineering (Bauingenieurwesen). I was quite surprised about that... I don't think there are too many girls in civil engineering in Berlin. Most of the girls in engineering take courses that are somehow related to the environment (Energie- und Verfahrenstechnik, Technischer Umweltschutz). To be honest it's a weird feeling to have so many girls at the faculty. Mark presented me to one of them (she's in mechanics I think) cos she likes German and Germans. She was so sweet. She so wanted us to visit the Portuguese island of Madeira (Nelly Furtado's home) and said she'd show us around. She showed me some pictures of the island on her cell phone. Her cute laughter was refreshing. In fact there are few girls in the classes I take (automation, 4th and 5th yr).


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