Monday, March 30, 2009
Berlin is the second most populous city and the eighth most populous urban area in the European Union
German term: Genosse is an important term to know when discussing east Berlin or the GDR; it means “comrade”. It’s easy to presume that Komrad would mean comrade, because it does, but more in the sense of a comrade at arms or a Schulcomrad (a “class comrade” at school- a classmate).
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
On our first day out, we grabbed a two-our bus to the Frankfurt Hahn airport and then skipped over to London Stansted before finally taking bus, this one with an hour ride, into London. We dropped our things off at our hostel, which was actually the upstairs of a nice local pub before heading out to see what we could of the National Gallery. After that we grabbed some dinner at a pub and promptly returned to our lodgings to die before starting our trip in earnest. We had ordered “London Passes”, which help one avoid lines and can result in a hefty amount of savings. The next morning we hopped onto the underground and sped over to St. Paul’s cathedral before popping by the Tower of London, Tower Bridge, the HMS Bismark, AND Southwark Cathedral. We kept ourselves busy. On Saturday we intended to start with seeing Westminster (churches in the morning = PERFECT viewing with the lighting), but underground construction forced us to start with the arch before walking down to Buckingham Palace, where we looked through the Queen’s Gallery (largest collection of unnecessarily gilded things I’ve seen in quite a while! More than a few gorgeous paintings, though) and the changing of the guard. We ended up dropping by Westminster and the British Mueseum before the day was out as well, and I must admit that my feet were beyond dead with aching by the end of it. On the final day of our London Passes (one must use them on consecutive days for however many days one has purchased them for) we headed out to see Windsor Castle, where the queen was hanging out for the weekend. When we came back into the city we walked about and saw the Churchill Museum as well as the Cabinet of War Rooms. The next day, our final true day in the UK, we stopped by the Church of All Hallows before catching our train out to Salisbury. Here we grabbed a tour bus that informs the riders of Salisbury history as well as he history of several other towns and the area before dropping one off at Stonehenge, which I believe is perfectly described by one of OWU’s art history professors- Stonehenge is there on this big field, and right there is the overpass. I did hear that the Heritage Foundation is planning on moving the overpass, though, which would be brilliant. Whose idea was it to put it there in the first place? It was dreadfully windy that day as well, and the cold sliced through everything. We then hopped back onto the bus before stopping off at Old Sarum, another local ruin, before finishing the Salisbury adventures off with Salisbury Cathedral and another local church that has a Medieval doom painting of a uniquely large, complete, and well preserved sort.
German Phrase: Ich bin erledigt! is pretty much saying that you are dead tired and are done for the time being; I definitely was erledigt by the end of my adventures, and now I get to go on the AJY trip to Berlin! I swear the excitement never ends over here.
Some London pics here
and some more here
Saturday, March 14, 2009
The Speyer Dom is, by virtue of its proportions,the largest and the most important; by virtue of the history to which it is linked– the Salic emperors
German term: I don’t believe I’ve taken a moment to explain the German term Dom. A Dom is a big cathedral that’s super special because it’s associated with the Kaiser for various reasons. (He may have had it built or something like that- it depends.) These are not to be confused with a Kirche, a church, which can verbally be confused with Kirsche (cherries), Küche (kitchen), and occasionally something as delicious as Kuchen (cake).
Speyer pics here
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Frankfurt is the financial and transportation centre of Germany and the largest financial centre in continental Europe
Studying off-campus from OWU is a rather simple matter. It involves a few trips to Blake Michael’s office(director of studying abroad), the filling out of not a few seemingly pointless forms, and then some more forms to top it all off and to be sure it has a healthy dose of bureaucracy. Also, a few meetings in there. As well as a lot of other things I’m glossing over for time and interest’s sakes. It’s straight-forward, though, and there are a ton of programs to choose from. Being a language major, it narrowed my choices quite effectively down. There were two that I was looking at by the end of things, namely Munich or Heidelberg, and through some smashing decision making arrived here. It’s a very nice program thus far, and I’m looking forward to the rest of my semester here. There are nigh limitless possibilities for the student in the Heidelberg program; there are a ton of classes to choose from after taking the DSH, which is the German language proficiency test. That’s what the first month of study here is spent preparing for; the group that I am here with gets a go at it on March 12. One can also get a part time job, and internship, or any number of other exciting things. I myself just got an internship at a local elementary school, where I will be herding wee-ones about as a mystical Native Speaker of English. Quite a good time, to be sure.
Heidelberg is a lovely town, and exploring it has been quite a joy. I highly suggest a solo hiking of the Holy Mountain from the very bottom; none of this sissy tourist taking a car to the top stuff!! And please be respectful to the area while you’re at it; some of the tourists were less than understanding of the sights to be seen, and that’s just beyond the tacky Hawaiian button-ups the best of tourists are usually prone to. But more on Heidelberg another day. Recently we spent the day in Frankfurt, saw Goethe’s childhood home (if you honestly have no idea who dear Goethe is, please go Google him at the least; Germany’s Shakespeare disserves at least a vague awareness, don’t you agree? He’s a bit bawdy at times for my tastes, though, to be quite honest. Erlkoenig is a nice poem, though.) as well as some of the most important buildings in the Holy Roman Empire. Important stuff, really. After the DSH we’ll be taking a trip over to Speyer, a city near Heidelberg. We also have a group trip to Berlin as well as another group trip towards the end of our stay that will hit several cities, including Weimar, Goethe’s city of choice, in which not a few very exciting Ginkgo trees will growing, much to my delight.
A slideshow of some pictures from Frankfurt
More pics from Frankfurt
German Word: Germany has many options of public transport. You've got the Busse, S-Bahns, U-Bahns, Zuge, and more. It's fantastic. Bus is clearly "bus", but it's pronounced 'boose' like 'moose'. An S-Bahn is a fast train for traveling within a city, an U-Bahn is an underground, and Zug means "train". There are several types of trains, though, so one has to be careful of which one one uses depending on how quickly one wants to get where!
In an entirely unrelated note, Patrick O’Hearn is working on a new album, which makes me happy in ways that I can not possibly fully articulate.
Enjoy some classic Patrick O’Hearn music while getting excited with me about the new stuff to come!
Monday, February 23, 2009
Heidelberg, Germany is home to the jaw of the "Heidelberg Man", whose jawbone is the earliest evidence of human life in Europe
A slideshow of images in Heidelberg, Germany!
A few more that highlight many of the city's tourist attractions.
Just a couple more, including a shot of the AJY center, wedged between a record shop and a Thai restaurant right on the main street in the old portion of town.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
I feel I could fill this entry with a ranting review of the National Colloquium’s opening and keynote speaker last night, but, in his spirit, I will instead direct my lovely readers to an important website. Please look it over and give it a think.
German Word: Denn die Welt muss es wissen. “Because the world needs to know.”
Friday, September 5, 2008
Dylan Thomas enjoyed frequenting several pubs, including the White Horse Tavern, The Mermaid, the Antelope, amongst others
Other than that, I’ve dipped my hand into many a sinister soup this semester. MARRCA is doing well, and we need to buy more swords for the club already. This will be interesting, as our treasurer is in Spain. I’m joining the Modern Foreign Language Student Board and trying to help out with the horticulture club, too. Trying to keep all of the times straight along with my classes will and has been interesting… beware the troubles of getting into too many things! It seems innocent enough at first, but it soon creeps up on one!
German Word: In my German course, we’re seeing films. We’ve watched Der blaue Engel (The Blue Angel) and will be watching M on Sunday. Ich schaue Filme gern! “I like watching movies!”
The Delaware fair had the annual parade, by the way!