Today I was looking through old tweets from a few years ago. I do this because I consider myself funny (for the most part) and like to remember what I was thinking about and how I was feeling at that moment in time. Well, about two years ago it was the World Cup and Brazil and Germany were playing in the finals. I was in Europe with all of my friends on our high school trip, I think we were in Italy or Croatia around that time. I was thinking about my schedule for the upcoming year, as I would be starting as a Freshman at USC. We had a foreign language requirement to fill, and I wanted to take advantage of it. I didn’t want to take Spanish, I knew that. Nothing against it, the language just really didn’t resonate with me. Also my accent was beyond terrible. I sounded like a surfer dude ordering something at Taco Bell. My friend dared me to take German if Germany won the world cup. So, two years later, sitting at a working desk in Berlin, Germany, I come across this tweet:
“Blake has dared me to learn German for my foreign language requirement if Germany wins the world cup tonight”
and then, a few hours later:
“Oh my god.”
My time in Germany was inspired by something that can be traced back to a single dare by my best friend. From there, I grudgingly started learning the language and culture, through classes at school. And honestly, it just builds up from there. If I hadn’t really enjoyed my first German class, which had the most amazing, lively Professor I’ve ever had, and not to mention some of the friendliest classmates, all just as confused as me, I don’t think that I would have continued with it. If I didn’t have so much fun pronouncing all of the words, which sound super silly compared to English, I may have dropped. If I had let the hard grammar and complicated conjugations get to me, I would be in a much different place than I am now.
Instead, I continued. And boy, am I really glad that I did.
I had pretty much no understanding or exposure to the language, aside from when my grandparents spoke it (mixed in with Greek, which provided to be very confusing) and when I had been to Munich with the aforementioned class trip. When I got to German III, we started to learn more about the culture of the different cities in Germany. Berlin was described as “culturally diverse” and “home to many government buildings” with “a large nightlife scene.” These are extremely vast understatements. Berlin is a huge hub of city, absolutely teeming with all walks of life and constantly buzzing with energy. There are not enough hours in the day to experience it all, or words to describe it. Berlin has a certain feeling to it, a sort of “vibe” that is hard to pinpoint. Berlin is a sum of its parts.
It’s multicultural, that's for sure. But every single person, tourist, resident, or something in between, has contributed to this “vibe.” When you get to Berlin, you give it a little piece of yourself, and when you leave, you take some of it with you. It’s always changing and evolving because of this. It doesn’t stand still, and that’s why it’s hard to describe, because it won’t stay the same for long, no matter where you are in the city. I’ve certainly taken a huge part of it home with me, but more importantly, I left a little part of my heart back there, and I guarantee, there’s more where that came from.
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<p>Hi! I'm Veronica, and I'm a communications/creative writing major from the University of Southern California. I love comedy, writing, and meeting new people! I'm a self-identified cat person, yet love dogs too.</p>