Heidelberg Exchange Update (Sept-Oct 2008)

Guten Tag!

Sorry it’s taken me forever to update. It’s not that I’m über busy, but I’ve also been quite lazy. It’s been nearly a month since I last updated! Oh dear! So I’m going to try to give a brief summary of what’s happened and what’s going on.

September
Wed. 24. – Our month-long immersion course ended. It was great to finally be done with ‘school’ but that also meant not seeing a lot of our classmates again. :/
Fri. 26. – visited the Catholic Jesuitskirche, as well as the Altes Schloss. Went on a tour inside the castle. Bought an antique book of prayer from the 19th C. for 15 euros.
Sat. 27. – Herbstfest (Autumn festival). My favourite part of it was the medieval fair in Uniplatz. It was also a lovely day and the Altstadt couldn’t have been more festive.
– My friend nd I left for München that evening. Was approached by a teenager who spoke to us in Baierisch (the dialect spoken in Bavaria) but we responded in broken German that we couldn’t understand him. Also found out from my aunt that my remaining Grandpa (in Vancouver) passed away on the 25th.
Sun. 28. – Attended Oktoberfest. Pretty awesome but didn’t have any beer!
Mon. 29. – Visited Schloss Herrenchiemsee (a petit version of Versailles. It’s no wonder King Ludwig II of Bavaria was disposed. He certainly spent a fortune on it!) in Herreninsel (island for men/lords?). Also bought my first dirndl (dark blue)! =)
Tues. 30. – Visited Schloss Neuschwanstein (the castle used in Disney’s Cinderella). Unfortunately, cloudy and chilly that day. Also decided I’ll never join an English tour with a bunch of Americans. Too many dumb comments/questions. Not to mention horrid accent.

Oktober
Wed. 1. – Shopped in the morning. Bought a Baierisch phrasebook and an English novel. Also bought my 2nd dirndl (light blue) at C&A! =) Returned to Heidelberg that evening. Met my flatmate from USA.
Thur. 2. – language placement test (easier than the first one taken a month ago; found out that I was put into Oberstufe A – advanced!). My friends and I went to Vetter’s for dinner. I had a Vetter 33 (tasted like cough syrup)… but having that with Sauerkraut didn’t go so well… I felt like fainting afterwards but my friend made me tea. Watched Fawlty Towers and Blackadder and felt better.
Fri. 3. – Ill (soar throat turned to runny nose) – think water with calk(sp?) irritated my throat. :(Visited several churches/cathedrals in Speyer, Rhineland-Pfalz, one of which was built before the Crusades!
Sat. 4. – My friends and I went to Düsseldorf, Nordrhein-Westphalen and attended Celtic Woman: A New Journey European tour.
Sun. 5. – walked around Düsseldorf. Not much; returned home.
Mon. 6. – Uni begins; had no classes – went to counsellor/signed up for courses. A Mitbewohner (flatmate – and the only guy) moves in.
Tues. 7. – First day of class for me. I attend my first Stammtisch at the Brass Monkey pub.
Thur. 9.-Fri. 10. – DAAD meeting for North American scholarship holders in Bonn, NW. Visited a museum of German history (mainly from 1945-present). Managed to meet other non-Americans (No really, I’m sorry, not everyone in the world comes from the States). Had dinner at a Chinese restaurant in a boat with fellow Canadians. Ate so much (must’ve been in my hungry phase).
Sat. 11. – Excursion down to Freiburg, Baden-Württemberg and the Schwarzwald (Black Forrest). Schwarzwald reminded me so much of Vancouver! =) Very warm in southern Germany. Watched Deutschland vs. Russland (World Cup qualification) at the Brass Monkey.
Sun 12. – Attended 1st church service at the Evangelical-Lutheran Heiligeistskirche in the Altstadt. All hymns were very old but beautiful. Only 1/3 of pews were filled. Had Communion in the ‘traditional’ way. An exhibition on life/death in the church; read one about a 21-y-o girl with cancer… very touched and burst into tears. :/ Attended Puccini’s La Boheme opera in Mannheim. Very good for an extremely cheap student price (we sat in the middle too!).
Mon 13. – Canadian Thanksgiving dinner party at a classmate’s, where I offered to wash her dishes after dinner.
Thur. 16. – Had a house meeting with my 2 flatmates (3rd flatmate may still be at home writing her thesis). Attended a friend’s birthday party.
Fri. 17. – My best friend came to visit me!
Sat. 18. – Excursion to Weimar, Thüringen (really EARLY in the morning). Attended a friend’s party ’til 4am.
Sun. 19. – walked up to the Schloss with my best friend.

Das ist alles! (That’s all!)
V