This is the first post on my study abroad blog so it will be entirely in English but hopefully I will be able to transition more and more into German as the semester progresses. I am so excited to have the opportunity to spend the next 3.5 months in Germany studying.
I have actually been here for about 4 days now but I am finally able to access wifi in my apartment so that is why I haven’t posted until now.
These last couple days have been awesome. I left the states on monday afternoon and arrived in the Frankfurt airport at 6am. After waiting there for about 7hrs while the other americans arrived, we finally left for Heidelberg. I tried really hard to stay awake but I eventually crashed on the bus ride here. After getting settled in and unpacked, all of the AJY (American Junior Year, the program I am doing my study abroad with) student met at the AJY center in the Altstadt to have dinner and get to know eachother. A few of us then decided to go out that evening to truly experience German culture (drink beer). We wondered around for a solid hour before we found a bar that we could all sit together in. We got a few pitchers to share and just chatted. Once we finished there, we went out to find another bar. One of the members of our group took the the lead on asking for directions. He was very good about telling everyone we met that “Wir sind Auslanders und wir wollen tanzen.” (We are foreigners and we want to dance). One group of German students took pity on us and brought us with them to a bar. It was great getting to speak with actually Germans about the differences between our two countries. Unfortunately, we never did get to go dancing.
The next morning, I got up early for my first run in Germany. I found a path along the river and followed it until I was about a mile or two away from Mannheim, the next city over. We then met back at the AJY at 10 am to discuss how the course would work and to fill out paper work. After we were done with that for the day, we went out in search of dinner. I knew exactly what I wanted. I had been craving it since the day I left Germany last summer. I am talk of course about Doener. For those of you that don’t know, Doener is a turkish food that you can find all over the place in Germany. It is like if a Taco and a Gyro met, fell in love, got married, found a good neighborhood with a good school system and bought a nice house that was at the very top of their price range but it was completely worth it because it came with a finished basement, a huge backyard, and the closet space that the Gyro just had to have, waited a year to get settled into their new life together and then had a child, and that child grew up to be a top tier athlete, lettering in Football and Track, while at the same time maintaining an outstanding GPA and eventually graduating at the top of his class and going to a very well respected 4 year college where he majored in engineering and philosophy because he wanted to be a well rounded individual. If you understand what I mean, Doener is like a taco made with lamb meat and is amazingly delicious. Later that evening I got to have my first every cocktail, a Sex on the Beach. It was good be a little concerning that it tastes nothing like alcohol.
Thursday, the AJY group went up to Schlossberg (castle on the mountain). The Castle was really cool and I got some great pics but the really cool thing happened on our way down. While we were waiting for the train to take us down to the bottom of the mountain, one of the workers at the station approached me and asked if the shirt I was wearing was a rugby jersey. It was. We started talking and I found out he played for one of the clubs in the city and that they had a practice that night if I wanted to come. This was perfect because I had been looking for a team to play with while I am here. We exchanged info and went our separate ways. later that afternoon, I looked up the team that he played for and found that they practiced and played less than a quarter mile from my apartment. I went to the practice that night and got stuck in right away. Afterwards, I met with the team manager and gave him some info. Once I get my player pass next week, I will be a member of the TSV Handschuhsheim Lions.
Friday, we took a preliminary placement test to see what group we would be in for the intensive language course we take in September. I was placed into the second group out of 3. I think this is a good place for me because I have been studying German for the past two years and I feel I understand the language well but my speaking could use a lot of work. I just need to become more comfortable with the language.
Well thank you for reading my ramblings. I hope to post on here atleast once a week.
At the end of each post I will be giving one or two useful word or phrases for if you ever find yourself in Germany.
German Phrase of the Week(or however often I post on here)
Ordering a drink at a bar
Ein Bier, bitte. (make sure when you indicate the number with your fingers, you start counting with your thumb)