So yeah... I've been here for a month. It feels weird saying that. For some reason, it feels as if I've been here longer (but I'm not complaining). On a scale of 1-10 determining how comfortable I feel here, I would have to rank my comfort a 3. Just kidding, I'm saying 10. I love it here! Since being here for a month, I've had the opportunity to try new foods, explore new places, and speak a whole lot of German (well, Dinglish - Deutsch and English).
Everyone's favorite: FOOD. So, Germany is known for it's famous food. I'm such a picky eater that I didn't think I was ever going to dare try their foods nor like them. I thought it was time for me to finally try currywurst 3 weeks in ... and it's amazing. Really life changing. Next up is the falafel. I was very skeptical because to this day I still have no idea what's on the inside, but I didn't like it anyway. If anyone knows, please tell me. I didn't have a döner kebap yet, but I had a chicken kebap if that counts. This is only like a short list of German food I've had but I promise it will get longer!
I don't even know where to begin with traveling. First, as a program, we had the opportunity to travel to Potsdam the weekend of orientation. We spent a day there and there was so much to see and do, I don't know how we managed to do it all in such short time. It was a long time ago, so I don't remember what we saw (sorry, but I'll upload pictures to make up for lack of memory!).
But the next trip I do remember was Dresden. This field trip was optional, so of course I had to do it. We were fortunate to spend a weekend in one of the most beautiful places in Germany. There was so much historical sights to see since the town is divided into the old and new Dresden. Personally, I liked the old Dresden because of the aesthetic, and it had such a grandiose character and charm. My favorite parts were when we were able to go to the top of the churches and overlook Dresden and just be captivated by the views.
Potsdam and Dresden were with my classmates, but for my next trip, I was able to go with a friend. Drum roll please, I went to Prague! My friend and I made an impulse decision to buy a bus ticket to Prague three days before our trip. The whole experience was fun, but the worst part was having to get up at 4:30 in the morning to make it to the bus station for 6:30 am. Tip: most trips cost (surprisingly) less if you book them to leave in the morning to and from!!!! For those who despise waking up that early, it's going to be worth it in the end.
Another annoyance I encountered was exchanging money. It's cool when you go somewhere that accepts Euros because no hassle, but even though a country is in the European Union, doesn't mean they take Euros. Keep in mind that these are all minor problems that aren't a big deal, but I like being dramatic. But back to Prague. I often got myself confused because to me, Prague and Dresden seem so similar. I kept having to do a double take to make sure I was in Prague. Prague is so historical that my friend and I were able to visit the castle and explore different museums. Another tip: have your student ID with you when you travel and go into museums because likely they'll have student discounts!!! I highly recommend going to Prague for anyone stuck on where to travel.
Sprichst du Deutsch? Ja, aber mein Deutsch ist nicht gut. (Do you speak German? Yes, but my German is not good.) That's a lie. My German is good, but I don't have the confidence to string together a full sentence to a local. Like if I mess up, my cover will be blown. They'll know that I'm a foreigner. When I go to the supermarket, I say the classic "Hallo" and then at the end say "Danke", but those are two common words that anyone can really communicate. I've tried a couple of times to order in German, but there's always one word that I need that I do not know so I just got to work around it or just talk in English. The worst is when the waiter says something (in German) that I guess is important but I just don't know what they're saying so I have to say "what?" six times. I can talk to my host in German, but sometimes she naturally talks too fast and I have to say "huh?", but I understand for the most part. The best is when people ask me for directions in German, but I have no idea where anything really is so I just tell them I don't speak German. Maybe next month I'll be able to write a blog post in German (don't panic, it won't happen, but goals you know?)
More updates to come! For now, Tschüss!