Fortunately the hangover from the party at Skadi wasn’t too bad. On Monday night, the group all went out for a night on the tiles at the rowing club, but Tom the guide tells us that some were slightly disappointed: “The music was a bit too monotonous for my liking and the partygoers there were a bit superficial.” One participant added that luckily they had had a drink at Tom’s beforehand, which was cool. “It’s a good thing that everything closes at twelve. If I had partied hard, then I would have felt it for the rest of the week.” A tactical move, given that the cantus (i.e. the student sing-along) is still to come.

Gids Anouk krijgt de volle laag na een fout antwoord uit het publiek.
Guide Anouk receives the punishment after a wrong answer from the audience. Image credit: Wouter Sterrenburg

Water pistol

That said, there are a lot of presentations and funny movies to get through in the Erasmus MC lecture rooms before that. Many of the students were familiar with the Medical Faculty Association Rotterdam Student Association (MFVR), but STOLA, IFMSA and Avicenna, not so much. After a while, some heads are starting to spin. To keep them focused, the organisations have come up with medical quizzes and games. The Faculty Introduction Committee, for instance, tested their medical knowledge. If you don’t know how many bones there are in the human body or how much saliva you produce in a day, you get squirted with a water pistol. Spoiler alert: whether on purpose or not, there were few correct answers.

Despite the best efforts of the student organisations, attention slowly waned. “All those talks: they gave me a bit of a headache,” sighed one of the participants. “They’re mainly sales pitches, of which I’m not such a fan.” Having said that, the programme does have its advantages: “It was great that we were in the hospital and could see where we’ll be studying,” reckons Arezo, one of the participants. Salma adds matter-of-factly: “There’re a lot of clubs you can join, and given that enrolment is free, they can count me in. If it’s not my thing, I can always cancel my membership.”

Op het terras van MFVR valt, tussen regenbuien door, genoeg te beleven.
On the terrace of MFVR, there is plenty to do in between the rain showers. Image credit: Wouter Sterrenburg

Booking stress

Enrolment starts at three o’clock in front of the Societas Studiosorum Reformatorum (S.S.R.) student association’s terrace. On the dot of three, the whole group tried to get their hands on a ticket. “Shit,” is the general response: turns out that the tickets were all sold out within seconds, and not everyone managed to get one.

Getting a seat at a restaurant also proved stressful. Other groups have told them that trying to book a table is a waste of time. Something to fret about later, given that there are a hundred free tokens for the MFVR terrace. A great way to get ready for the cantus that everyone is looking forward to. “We’re going to try to get a table at Happy Italy, because it’s going to take a while before we have to check-in at Ahoy. And that queue won’t be for the faint-hearted either, ha ha.”


Group 72 got soaked in the queue, but remains enthusiastic

This year is just a little bit different: QR codes, keeping your distance and long queues…