Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Freiburg, Germany

Freiburg, Germany

In retrospect, my 10 hour bus ride from Prague, Czech Republic to Freiburg, Germany wasn’t so bad. I munched on my pre-made nutella + raspberry jam sandwiches, listened to my iTouch (Mr. Touchy-feely) read some Harry Potter et la coupe de feu, and managed to fit in a nap or two. In fact, all went quite well until I watched a man drop off his daughter and her friends: he came onto the bus, talked to them a few minutes, waited outside next to the bus for another 15 minutes, and watched and waved goodbye as the bus pulled away from Nürnberg. I immediately could picture my dad doing it. In fact, he has done it several times at airports. Anyway, in my growing homesickness, the whole scene made me miss my dad something awful and my eyes began to water. I decided to just go in for the kill and listen to Ben Fold’s “Gracie” and cry for 3 minutes. Afterwards, I felt a bit better. Right. Anyway, I got to Freiburg around 7pm Friday. Trev came to pick me up and head back to his residence, coincidentally located in an area of the city named after a French general who designed Lille’s Citadelle. I was too sleepy to be very exciting, so we mainly ended up watching “Goldeneye” (my third James Bond movie!) and falling asleep. We started Saturday off right with eggs + toast for breakfast. Trev took me on a tour of the city, complete with the market outside the Münster, the Münster itself, the Haribo store (!!), a stone alligator, Erasmus’ house, the 2 towers of the city, ad a sweet lookout point from a mountain. Oh, and bratwurst from a vendor at the market. Delicious! We walked to his friend’s residence, located just next to a really awesome park. We had a small cookout, hamburgers included! I met more of Trev’s friends and I’m very pleased to report that they are all very friendly, funny, and likeable. After sitting in the park for hours, we ended up switching between apartments for hanging out, chatting, and general fun. Until 5:30am. Yep.
We took the tram home to crash and woke up late (read: I took too long getting ready) so had to runt o the tram stop to go have Easter Brunch at Ashley’s apartment. Ashley happens to be a linguistics major at Iowa as well, so we talked a bit about courses and spent the day watching movies (Zodic and Quantum of Solac (in German)). When Trev and I got back to his place that night, I was able to skype with my family!

On Monday, Trev, Alyssa and I hopped onto a train to go to Schluchsee, a beautiful lake in the black forest. We attempted to get some schoolwork done, but I mainly watched other people and ate the cookies that I had brought for our picnic. Following Alyssa’s dramatic recapturing of my notes as they blew away, we went back to Freiburg. Later on, we went to O’Kelley’s Irish Pub, had some beer, and participated in the pub quiz, which I found to be loads of fun.

Trev has class on Tuesdays, so I did some preparation for my takehome exam while he was gone. After I made potato wedges and we watched a few Law and Order episodes, Trev took me back into the city to get ice cream. I had a cone of chocolate hazelnut and Bailey’s. Mmmmmmmmmmm. We walked a bit, returned home for a strange variation on schnitzel (that was yummy all the same, I assure you), then went to David’s. Or we tried to. He wasn’t checking his phone, nor buzzing us up, and the park was fairly empty. Trev and I walked most of the way home and realed. We unsuccessfully tried to watch Dr. No, but gave up and went to sleep instead. Now, as I write, I am on my train from Strasbourg to Lille. TGV are fast. I mean, that’s the point: train à grande vitesse. High speed train. But seriously,it’s amazing to watch the scenery go by once the train really starts chugging along. We actually slowed to a stop earlier and waited 5-10 minutes due to a security threat of some sort. There’s still about 2.5 hours left of my trip and it appears we’re just now arriving at Lorraine station. Mmm, quiche Lorraine… And mmm, Mumford and Sons on Mr. Touchyfeely… My window is starting to be splattered with rain and it’s nice. My plan is to continue working/studying/planning. I do believe an academic update is in order for this blog…

A plus tard!

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