Sullivan, Kelsey

Name: Kelsey Sullivan
Location of Study: Germany
Program of Study:
Sponsors: Frank Annese

5 thoughts on “Sullivan, Kelsey

  1. Sorry it took so long to post my first post, it has been a crazy few days and I do not get very good internet in my hotel. After a long 24 hours of traveling, I finally made it to Berlin on Sunday, but my bag did not. I was so tired and having to talk to the lady at the lost baggage station was a struggle. Luckily, my bag arrived later Sunday night. My first day of school we had a test to see which class we would enter-I was placed in B1.2. However, on Monday we did not actually have to go to class, so I just went back to my hotel and slept. Tuesday was the first day for me and I am the only American in my regular class, but in my intensive class there are three other Americans. Something that I have found very interesting so far is hearing everyone’s accents while speaking German. For example, there is an Italian in my class, and you can tell he is Italian when he speaks German. I am used to taking German with all Americans, so we all have the same basic German accent. On Tuesday I had class until 6:00 so afterwards I just walked around the city and explored by myself. So far I really have not had that many problems navigating the U-Bahn and the S-Bahn. Wednesday I only had class until 12, so me and some classmates walked to Checkpoint Charlie. If you ever want to find ALL of the tourists in Berlin, just go to Checkpoint Charlie. At night on one of the channels on my TV it plays popular American sitcoms dubbed in German, so I have been watching some of those. I have seen most of the episodes before back home, so it helps to understand a bit better. However, I have been able to understand most of the dialogue. Well our break is almost over so I have to get back to class, but I promise it will not take so long to post again!

  2. So the past couple of days have been very interesting. I have been to many museums, the zoo, on a boat tour of the city, and I also have done some shopping. One museum I went to with a classmate was Legoland. It was very cool-they had a mini-Berlin made of all Legos. They also had a 4-D movie that we saw. It was a short kids movie but all in German with no subtitles and I was very excited because I understood all of it. One night I was with two classmates in a park and we met some Germans and were hanging out with them. I asked them what they thought about America. Their response was very interesting. There were three guys, I would say mid to late 20’s. One of them said that in all of the movies and stuff America is portrayed as the land of freedom, but in reality it is not at all. He said he did not understand a lot of our “little rules” –for example, one cannot casually walk down the street drinking a beer. He also thinks that Obama is no different that George W. Bush. He thinks nothing has changed—his biggest problem with the American Government is that Guantanamo Bay is still open. My German teacher also mentioned this as one of his problems with America, and then when Obama spoke in Berlin today; his loudest applause came when he said he plans to close Guantanamo. However, both my German teacher and the guys in the park like American music. They think the food and beer are terrible. Also interesting, is that my German teacher thinks that Germany and all of Europe in general are influenced too much by America. I found all of the answers I got very interesting. Tomorrow I will go to Goslar, Germany to visit my friends. I am very excited and need to pack. Bis bald!

  3. So this past weekend I went to visit my friends in Goslar. It was so much fun, but I had a bit of trouble getting there. I got to the Train station and the board said that my train was not stopping in Braunschweig, where I needed to make my transfer. So I had to find another train that was going there. Then that train was 30 minutes late so I missed my connection to Goslar. I made it there in the end, and only about and hour or so after I was supposed to. On Friday I went to a high ropes course with two friends. I am scared of heights, but I did it. It was very interesting because I don’t think that this course would have passed restrictions in the US. First of all, we did not have helmets, and second of all, the obstacles were not very safe. Nevertheless, it was fun. On Saturday morning I went to their Graduation Ceremony. It was very interesting to compare it to my Graduation. The family and friends were very calm throughout, whereas at my Graduation we had blowhorns and everything. That may just be my school though. I understood 2 of the 4 speeches. One of the ones I did not understand was the Principal’s speech. It was about politics and such, which is harder for me to understand. My friends said, however, that the speech was dumb and that I did not miss anything. The other speech that I did not understand was by a student. He talked really really fast, which is why I could not follow it. That night was Abiball, the German version of Prom. It was also interesting to compare this to Prom. There were many differences. The first one was that the parents and siblings come to Abiball-I can’t imagine what my prom would have been like with my parents there. Another difference is the presence of alcohol-rather legal alcohol. Something I have noticed about the Germans is that they will not drive even if they have had one drink, even adults who have been driving for years. To get to Abiball my whole family took a cab, as did everyone else’s. Abiball was great and it lasted about 12 hours and to my surprise I was not tired when it was over. However, as soon as I sat down in the cab, I was exhausted. I came back to Berlin on Sunday around midnight and got up for school on Monday-that was a struggle. Tonight I will go to see a musical, called Hinterm Horizont. It is a story about Berlin in the time of the wall. I am looking forward to seeing this musical and comparing it to my experiences in New York and Cleveland.