Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
05 April 2011 @ 12:39 pm
Okay... I really suck at this whole updating regularly thing. >.> I seem to lack motivation when I have no structured schedule, and now that I'm actually up before 10 AM and am getting myself back on track for the new semester, I have discovered a bit of motivation again.

So. This weekend a friend of mine from high school came to visit. She is studying in Utrecht in the Netherlands, which is about 5 hours away from Bremen by train. She arrived Friday night, left Saturday night-- a short visit, but we had a lot of fun. It was her first time in Germany, so it was fun to watch her reactions. There didn't seem to be anything about Bremen that she didn't like. She kept repeating what an amazing city it was.

Friday night, after she arrived and we'd dropped off her bags, we went to Hofbräu München, which is an imitation of the Hofbräuhaus in Munich, so the waiters there wear Lederhösen and Dirndls and you can order liter mugs of beer, called a Maß. We had somewhat more traditional Bavarian food rather than northern German food, but it was good. It was our intention to go out after dinner, but we were both tired and decided it would be best to just go back to my apartment and watch a movie. It was nice to just hang out-- it was like the old sleepovers in high school that we used to have.

After a late start on Saturday (my fault, since I've become a little nocturnal with my break behind me), I showed her around the city, mostly just the old section: the marketplace with the Cathedral, Town Hall, and Roland; the Schnoor, the old fishermen village; the Schlachte, the walkway along the Weser river; and the Viertel, which is a more artsy and liberal part of the city just outside of the old city. We had lunch at a very delicious Italian place, since we were both pining for good Italian-- By chance, we were both in Venice just a week apart from one another (still haven't written about that *wince*). The whole day was absolutely gorgeous; it was the first day in months that I could walk around without a coat, and I actually got a little sunburned.

My friend and I capped off her visit by sitting by the Weser, people-watching. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect day for her to see the city because there was a Werder Bremen game that afternoon, so people in the streets were decked out with their white and green fan gear. On top of that, people were a little tipsy, somewhat drunk on both beer and the gorgeous weather. We watched a group of college kids playing with a soccer ball on a dock, which is just asking for trouble-- they lost it in the water several times. Almost every time, it landed between the dock and the shore, but once it fell in on the far side of the dock and the current threatened to carry it away completely. So one of the guys jumped into the river to fish it out, to much applause from the onlookers when he made it. Not to be outdone, a few of his friends decided to jump off the pedestrian bridge over the river, and then two girls jumped in off the dock, making more of a fuss about jumping than the guys on the bridge did.

It was just nice to sit and talk and people-watch with someone who's known me since high school. We both agreed that we would punch our high school selves in the face if we ever got a chance to meet them, and yet somehow we've managed to tolerate one another this long. :P I was sad to see her go, but I have another visit to look forward to in... wow, two weeks. Another friend from high school is coming and we'll be traveling to Berlin together. That will be my third Berlin trip this year. Kinda crazy. Then a month after that my sister comes, which will be OMG AWESOME. :D Things are looking promising this semester.
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
18 March 2011 @ 09:10 pm
I realize that I haven’t been keeping up with this journal as I said I would, and for that I apologize. I’ve been traveling and working essentially nonstop since… February 14? Maybe? And on top of that, I’ve had a few personal issues to deal with, namely the death of my paternal grandfather—that put me off writing for quite some time, I’ll admit.

Currently, I’m sitting in a hostel in London with aggiebishop, who I met up with in Venice on Sunday. We’ve been traveling together since then, and it has been most enjoyable. Unfortunately, I don’t have time to detail all of my adventures of the past month. I am going back to Bremen on Saturday, and I have a paper due the following Monday.

I suppose my compromise for failing to maintain this journal will be to write a new entry every weekend about somewhere I’ve been and not yet written about. I haven’t written much about my excursion to Berlin, nor the visit to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp (as I said earlier, cheery stuff), and then the adventures of the past month: Vienna with my program, Salzburg, Munich, Bavaria, Venice, and London (happening right now! ^_^ ). This weekend won’t have an entry thanks to the paper that’s due Monday, but I’ll do my best for the weekend after that. I’ll also be able to write about my new classes, which (finally!) start in April.
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
16 January 2011 @ 11:30 pm
Well I seem to have failed miserably at keeping up with LJ comments. Do forgive the more-than-a-week late responses. >_<

I've been rather busy lately, with a presentation last week (in English, so a piece of cake, but I still had to research for it), a presentation coming up on Tuesday, and a seminar day on Saturday. 6 hours devoted to the economic status of Germany during the Weimar Republic on a Saturday, which just doesn't seem fair to inflict on students. I'm also starting to gear up for all the final papers I've got ahead of me. Yippee~

I'm quite ready for classes to be done so I can go have Many Adventures in Europe. I keep looking forward to all the visits I'm going to get, and not to mention the visits I'm going to make. And it's all going so fast-- it's hard to believe that in a month I'm going to be in Vienna again. And in slightly more than a month my mom comes, along with my aunt. That will be nice.

This entry had little to no purpose aside from me saying that I'm sorry about the fail response time. I'm going to work on that one.
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
Hey everyone! I probably shouldn't have left this journal to sit like this over Christmas, but I was traveling, and had homework, and *excuse, excuse, excuse* Long story short, I did end up writing an entry for the Dickinson in Bremen blog about our Berlin trip from Dec. 9 to 13, but that entry was about the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp in Oranienburg and I decided that Christmas wasn't the best time to be posting something like that. So I'll add that entry here later.

Now, this is my Christmas in Germany entry! I had an excellent time, and since I've got quite a bit of time on my hands right now, this post will be decently long, with a few pictures. Also, this entry has a lot about food. :)

Von Nord- bis Sud- bis Zentraldeutschland und zurück...Collapse )

I'm looking forward to 2011. I turn 21, though that doesn't mean much in Germany. It's the year when three of my friends are coming to study in three different countries in Europe, giving me new visiting opportunities, and when a few more friends might drop by good ol' Germany to visit me. My mom and my aunt are coming at the end of February, my sister might visit in May or June, and my brother and dad might come together in the summer. I will be going to Vienna, Rome, Paris, Utrecht, Amsterdam, and possibly London, Venice, and Salzburg if all goes well. I go home in 2011, and possibly go straight from home to Otakon the next weekend-- if mom will let me out of her sight for a weekend after a year from home. :P 2011 is also the year I become a senior, which is just freaking scary. I'm going to try to make 2011 the best year I've ever had so far, and I hope it treats you all well too.
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
04 December 2010 @ 11:04 pm
It's been a very busy couple of weeks for me, hence no journal entries. And over the past couple weeks I did nothing more interesting than work, so I figured this week I could do a picture post.

Pictures beneath the cut.Collapse )

No pictures of Bremen yet, sadly. I'll have to go get pictures of the Christmas market before it closes down at the end of the month.

Next weekend: Berlin again! This time for four days or so, Thursday night to Monday afternoon.
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
14 November 2010 @ 04:00 pm
I wrote this for the Dickinson in Bremen blog, so I figured I'd be lazy and copy/paste it here. :P

Read more...Collapse )

Anyhow, I think that a picture update some time this week is in order-- if I have time. Tuesday night I go bowling with the Study Buddy program, basically trying to make some more friends. Wednesday I have a meeting with a self-learning program in an attempt to better my academic German. Thursday is an excursion to the Immigrant Museum in Bremerhaven, which was one of the main ports where people left Germany to the US. And Friday, lady_tigerlily comes! So excite!
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
07 November 2010 @ 12:26 am
Sorry this post is coming so late after my trip-- this has been a very, very busy week school-wise for me, and I only just got free time to sit down and unwind enough to post today.

I arrived in Vienna last Friday, and through a series of various attempts at communicating with lady_tigerlily I eventually managed to get on the correct train to get to the center of the city and meet her there. From there we went to her apartment and spent most of the night talking and being the generally nerdy/awesome/fantastic people that we are.

Saturday we went to Baden to the thermal springs, and I discovered that I had, in fact, managed to bring what I thought was my one piece bathing suit but was in reality a long top of one of my sister's two piece suits. >_< So I ended up buying something new so I could still swim. It was a pretty cool setup-- a normal pool with a bunch of different jets and fountains to play around with, a hot tub, and then two separate heated pools outside that let off clouds of steam in the cooler air. After getting back into the city, we had dinner at Der Liebe Augustin, and then we went back to the apartment and talked and marathoned stupid YouTube videos until 3 in the morning-- and that was after setting the clocks back for Daylight Savings. XD

Sunday, Halloween, was the day for the Magic Flute. We got to the opera house about three hours before the opera actually started to wait in line for tickets and get decent standing places. The opera house was beautiful, and I got really excited just thinking about how parts of Amadeus were filmed there. And I loved the opera itself, too-- really gorgeous and complex music, whimsical, and also pretty goofy. I think I offended some dumb Americans behind us by telling them off when one of them tried to take lady_tigerlily's place, but they deserved it. :P Afterwards, we had coffee, picked up some convenience store food, and went back to the apartment to marathon Durarara!! which was loads of fun.

Monday was my last day. My flight was in the evening, so we spent the afternoon in Zentralfriedhof, the largest cemetery in Vienna. I saw the graves of Beethoven, Schubert, Johann Strauss, and Brahms, as well as a memorial to Mozart. lady_tigerlily and I spent a lot of time taking interesting pictures of the graves, poking fun at many, many things, making awful jokes about Mozart, and trying to use the phrase "German sparkle party" as often as possible. And she's coming to visit in a couple weeks! :D Fun times will be had.

I think I'll use a separate entry to talk about school and so on. Bis dann!
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
28 October 2010 @ 12:47 am
Woooow, quite a bit's happened between my last update and now. First things first: Amsterdam.

Amsterdam is... something else, to put it simply. The whole city is built around a rather carefully planned canals-- and then as for the rest of it, it's as if all the effort in organization went into the canals, so they just kind of dumped a mishmash of roads and buildings everywhere. And many of the roads--not so much the major ones-- are places where cars, trams, bicycles, and pedestrians just kind of mingle. It's a little frustrating to get around, since a fair number of the roads curve along with the canals, so it's never quite a straight shot anywhere. And bikes, bikes everywhere. I think the statistic was 750,000 people living in Amsterdam, with 600,000 bikes. Sometimes there wasn't room to walk on the sidewalk because of all the bikes chained up.

We didn't have much time in Amsterdam, since we arrived Tuesday night and left Thursday afternoon. Wednesday we went to the Van Gogh museum and the Anne Frank house, and spent a good deal of time wandering around the city trying to figure out where the museum was. That was an interesting day, because apparently October-November is the worst time to visit Amsterdam due to the unpredictable weather. Over the course of the day it was sun, rain, sun, rain, sun, hail, torrential downpour, sun, sleet, sun, drizzle, nighttime mist. Extremely weird. The morning before leaving the city, I went with the other girl on the trip to one of the largest open-air markets in the city, the Albert Cuypmarkt. It took up an entire street on the outskirts.

I had Friday to relax and take care of a few house-keeping things, and then Saturday was a day trip to Hamburg, where all the students in our program went (all 6 of us :P ). It was interesting-- Hamburg, as the program coordinator told us, is always more extreme than Bremen. Both are old, Hanseatic harbor cities, and also rivals in pretty much anything. Hamburg is much larger, with a grander and more ornate town hall, a bigger harbor, and is the second largest city in Germany. Bremen's town hall is smaller, but far older, has a smaller harbor, and is (I think) the tenth largest. Hamburg says it's the gate of the world, referencing how many ships from different places in the world stopped in Hamburg, and so its crest is the gate. Bremen, rather smaller, says that Hamburg may be the gate of the world, but Bremen holds the key-- and its crest is the key. Personally, I like Bremen better than Hamburg, but I am also unfairly biased. :P

Monday, classes finally started. I have 5 classes, but will only receive credit for 4, so I need to choose which one I drop. I think I'll write more about my classes when I get a better feel for them.

And this weekend I'm going to visit lady_tigerlily in Vienna! Soooo excited! :D

PS: I feel like since I'm traveling so much I should be required to do the jumpy dance in this video.

PPS: Scooter's coming to Bremen. Think I should go to his concert~?
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
Ohhhh boy, what a week. Where to start? Let's start with Tuesday.

My first week in Bremen.Collapse )

All right, so look for my Amsterdam post some time next week! :)
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Sand Dream: Princess of the wandering Village
11 October 2010 @ 10:37 pm
Why is it that whenever I have ample time to update LJ, I don't, and when all of a sudden things start picking up, I have a major urge to post? Thank you for being counter-productive, work ethic. :P

Anyhow, I had a very lovely week in Kassel with my former roommate exchange student (although she really was my former roommate). We would take excursions during the day, whether they were little things like going into town because she needed something for her apartment near her university, or we'd go to various attractions in the area, like the Sleeping Beauty castle in Reinhardswald. In the evenings I would bum around on the internet... and not post. Go me.

But yes, anyhow, I arrived in Bremen on Friday and was overcome with glee at finally being here, finally knowing that I won't have to live out of my suitcase anymore. That was getting really old. And I quite like my room. It's not too small-- a comfortable size for one person, and I have my own bathroom and a kitchenette.



WhatCollapse )

Anyhow, Saturday night the whole group of Americans from my school (all 6 of us) went to see the Bonn Philharmonic and went out afterwards. I got to see a bit of the city, although not much because it was nighttime and I was more focused on staying with the group than gawking around. Sunday I mostly fought against the weird smell in the bathroom until I figured out it was the shower curtain, since the person who lived here before me was apparently really gross. Chucked that thing out, got a new one, and everything was good. I like being able to control my surroundings like this, as well as what food there is, what everything looks like-- it's really, really nice. The only thing I have to be conscious of here is sound levels, and that's easy since I'm usually pretty quiet.

Tomorrow's a city tour, the rest of the week is filled up, next week I'm going to Amsterdam with some Dickinson students-- I've got a lot to look forward to!
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