The answer is always the same: “I can’t sing”. When people ask me what I’m bad at, it always winds up to this. So when the Karaoke started after the Bandnight in Huize Maas, I was practically forced by our group to show them that my singing voice indeed sucks. But that was okay, because I wasn’t the only one. Turns out group 27 does have great performing skills, but our version of ‘I will survive’ probably was the worst out of tune song I’ve ever heard ánd sung. But luckily we did that together, and I guess we can call it some kind of teambuilding. ESN Introduction Week. Day 3. Group 27.
And teambuilding was exactly the idea of the third day of the introweek. Because before we’d put on our dancing shoes for the Bandnight and the Karaoke, we had an awesome sportsday at the ACLO. And by ‘we’, I mean everyone who wasn’t still sleeping. And by ‘we’, I also mean everybody who could actually find the ACLO and did not get lost in the maze which we call Zernike. Anyway, we competed in teams, in handball, basketball, volleyball, table tennis, squash and so on. And funny as it seems, when you all just try and hit a volleyball into the right direction, you bond with each other.
There was one sport that I, as a former practitioner and Dutchman, actually missed. During one of our breaks, we talked about one of the most popular sports in the Netherlands which is also a huge part of Dutch culture – speedskating, or as we call it: ‘schaatsen’ (see the video at the end). It’s like rollerblading, but then on ice. That’s why we obviously couldn’t do it at the ACLO, because the icetrack in Groningen is at the sportscentre of Kardinge. When the group asked me about the famous ‘Elfstedentocht’ – the eleven cities tour – I could only tell them about things I had read and a couple of memories from my childhood. You see, the 200 km long Elfstedentocht crosses the entire province of Friesland and can only be held when lady winter’s done her job. The last one was in 1997. Until then the only thing we Dutch people in Groningen can do, is train at Kardinge. Or you could just go there with your ESN group… Maybe I’ll see you guys at the icetrack!
By Rients Verschoor