'And now, let us step out into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure'

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Guten tag!

Ok, so technically that is Good Afternoon, and since it is evening here is should say Guten Abend, but it doesn’t have the same ring to it does it?

As you can see, my 3 hours of German class have really paid off. I am obviously now a German-speaking genius! Haha yeah right. Fortunately, the classes have been helpful and I have learned some useful words and phrases, like Hi How are you, My name is, how to count, and names of foods. I am already feeling a little more comfortable living in Germany, now that I can read the menu a little better and understand a few more things. 

Things have been busy since my last post. There were many orientation sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday, and even a city tour, which was very helpful. Classes started on Friday, but I only have one class per day so I’ve only had one session of my International Relations class. I am looking forward to my religion class, which is on Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

On Thursday, we were supposed to go hiking in the Black Forest, but it has been so rainy  for the past two weeks (every day that I have been here has been cold and wet. ugh) that we didn’t hike because the trails would have been too muddy and slippery. We did go to a Black Forest town called Titisee, which was a charming little village on a lake, with shops and restaurants. It was very cute and nice, and it only rained a little. 

It has been fun getting to know people here. The other Americans in my group are all very nice and easy to talk to. We have spent a lot of time together since we don’t know too many other people. We went to a karaoke bar on Wednesday night, we all went to a cafe on Wednesday and hung out for a couple hours, and we went out again last night. 

It’s also been cool talking to my flatmates. I have 5 flatmates, 3 girls and 2 guys. One of the girls is from China, one of the guys is from Lithuania, and all the others are from Germany. I’ve talked to all of them and they are really interesting. The German guy, Akardi, has been teaching the Chinese girl, Shuang Shuang, how to bake. She’s been practicing making a Black Forest Cake, which is a specialty of this region. It’s a chocolate layer cake filled with cherries and whipped cream, and the cake is soaked in liqueur. I like that she bakes, because she always shares! 

Today has been pretty chill. It’s still cold and rainy, so not the best weather for wandering around Freiburg. Because of the late night last night, I woke up kind of late and then just hung around the flat until about 4:00. I went into the city with one of my friends for dinner and am now back in my flat. I may go out tonight, but I might just spend the night in. This week has been so fun and so exciting, but also pretty intense; it might be nice to spend some time with my flatmates away from all my fellow Americans. 

So that’s it for now! I’ll post some pictures with this post! Gute Nacht!

The lake in the Black Forest town of Titisee

A hotel in Titisee

A shot in Freiburg. I was walking through a little alleyway that connects to the Munsterplatz, where the big cathedral is and saw this cool view. 

A Swiss chocolatier in Frieburg. Yum!

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Greetings from Freiburg!

Hello! After an exhausting voyage, I am finally in Freiburg, Germany! The trip was long, the red-eye incredibly tiring, but I can already tell that it’s all worth it. 

I arrived in Zurich this morning, around 8:30 local time. I managed to find the train from the airport to the downtown Zurich train station. I had a few awkward moments, specifically when the train came to an abrupt stop that I wasn’t expecting but apparently everybody else was. I went flying, accosting the man in front of me as I struggled to keep my balance. All the Swiss people looked at me like, yikes what a hot mess. Oh well! Made it to the Zurich train station and found my train to Freiburg pretty easily. Hopped on board and 20 minutes later I was off!

Getting from the Freiburg train station to the IES Center was a little more difficult. They had given us a map and told us to show it to the cab drivers so we could get a ride. But the cap driver I talked to told me that it was only a 10 minute walk away and he wouldn’t drive me. Oh no! It’s a beautiful day, though so I decided a walk would be cheaper and I’d get to see some of the city. Since it was going to take me a while to get to IES, I figured I should use the restroom. You have to pay to use them! What!?!? .80 Euros. So it’s pretty cheap, but still I thought it was crazy. I don’t know if that’s just the train station or all over Freiburg but I was totally shocked. 

Got to IES and checked in. Met a girl in my program, who is from Indiana and seems nice. Then they sent us to our respective dorms. Mine is about 2.5 miles from IES, so they called a cab for me. I showed up at my dorm and was greeted by the Housing Tutor, an IES person sort of in charge of us at the dorms. I was shown to my room, which is in a flat of 6 people. We all have our own rooms and there are 2 bathrooms and a shared kitchen. I was surprised because I assumed I would be living with the other American students in my program, but actually I’m living with 5 German students. I think it will be cool, though. Since they live here, I’m sure they’ll be able to tell me where the cool places are to go, or even bring me along!

After unpacking and wrestling with the duvet cover they gave me, I went downtown to do some shopping. I needed to buy shampoo, toothpaste, a hairdryer, and towels. I was able to figure out the tram system (yay me!) and made it downtown without much trouble at all. I did my shopping in the main downtown area of Freiburg. Then I came across the Munster Cathedral, which was pretty awesome! And there are little restaurants and a bratwurst cart around the cathedral, so I grabbed some lunch while I was there (a brockwurst, and ice cream for dessert). 

Now I’m back in my dorm. We have an IES dinner tonight at 7, so I have about an hour and I think I’m just going to chill for a little bit. I need to not fall asleep though! That’s why I’m writing this post now. I’ve been up for so long, over 24 hours with minimal sleep on the plane. I’m excited to meet everyone tonight, but even more excited for bed!  

Munster Cathedral 

A little cafe in the Munster plaza 

And behind that lady is the bratwurst cart where I had my first German meal!

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“We did a screen test and so, they brought in cameras, and then there were four Jims and four Pams, and we got mix-and-matched. Every time I was matched with John, it was so easy and it just was so natural. On the second day of auditions he leaned over to me and he said, ‘You’re my favorite Pam.’ And I said, ‘You’re my favorite Jim! Oh my gosh! I hope we both get it!’ So, when they called me and said that I got the role, I said, ‘Who’s Jim? Please say John Krasinski.’ They said, ‘Yes, it’s John Krasinski.’ And I knew. I started to cry and I knew that the two of us together… I couldn’t be Pam without him. He’s my Jim. He just is.” - Jenna Fischer

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Dove hired a forensic artist to draw how women see themselves versus how others see them - the results are moving.

I fell in love with each of these women. And even more in love with the person whose idea this was.

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This amazing, and so thought-provoking.