Monthly Archives: November 2012

Fun in London: Part 1

I realized upon my arrival in London that I visited Claus in Cologne and Logan in London.  My life is inherently poetic!

So I got home from Germany on Monday evening, then had an evening flight on Wednesday to London.  I was so happy, I figured out the express bus to the airport!  I really wanted to know how to do it so that when my parents came to visit I would be an expert.  This was my first time flying with Easy Jet, a budget airline.  Besides being cheaper, it was different in that seats weren’t assigned–it was first come, first served–and you were only allowed one piece of carryon luggage, not one piece + a personal item (purse or whatever).  That meant I had to severely limit my packing so that my camera bag could fit in my duffel, but it was worth it!  I love that camera bag.  Although I maybe need to invest in a small padded camera wrap or something for future trips.

Logan (a friend from the Quad Cities who attends college in London) greeted me at the airport with a cup of Starbucks tea (woo England!) and then we took a bus and cab to his apartment, a nice 3-story house in southwest London near Wimbledon.  The layout of his house was really cool: two bedrooms and a bathroom on the first floor, kitchen and living/dining room on the second floor, two bedrooms and a bathroom on the third floor.  So it was like two separate apartments with a shared kitchen and living/dining room.

The next day, Logan and I set out to explore London a bit.  Luckily, he has Thursdays off from “uni,” as they call it!

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Best of my apartment

Hello everyone!  I hope you all are having a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend.  I had a great dinner at David’s and my apartment on Thursday night; we invited all of our friends here and ended up having 14 people over!  Everyone brought something to contribute to the meal and it was a really fun time.  I didn’t take many pictures of the evening, but here’s one my friend Sam snapped on my phone:

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Categories: Life in France | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments

Making my way back to Nice

Parts one, two, three, and four of my Germany trip 🙂 this is the last one! PROMISE!

So Claus and I woke up in the hostel and got ready to go.  I was ready first so I packed up all my stuff, then went and sat in the lobby to use the WiFi until he was ready.  At 11 he came down and said he was ready to go, so we started back up to the room to get our stuff and check out.  However, when he tried to use his key card to get into the hallway it didn’t work, and mine didn’t either.  “Claus… when is checkout?”  “11 AM.”  “It’s 11:02!  That’s why our keys don’t work!  Why didn’t you tell me?  Now we’re going to get late checkout!”  I may have overreacted a tiny bit but I was frustrated.  I left him behind and booked it down to the desk and explained what happened.  The guy recharged our keys, we grabbed our stuff from the room, and checked out without any late charges.

A random building I saw that I thought looked cool. Claus did not agree.

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Wandering Around Berlin: Part 2

Posts about Germany so far: one two and three.

The next morning, we got up and got ready, packed, gave the key back to Antje, and took our stuff to the hostel to store for the day.  They locked it in a room for us, we got lunch, and then I believe the first thing we did was hop on a tour bus (it’s only been like a week and a half and I’m already forgetting what we did when!  This is why I’m keeping a blog!).  The tour bus was really cool- it was one of those double-decker ones that you can get on and off however much you want for 24 hours with your ticket.  We rode it for just a few minutes, then decided to get off at the Jewish Memorial.  It was a bunch of pillars increasing in size, meant to symbolize headstones for all those killed in the Holocaust who don’t have graves.

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Wandering Around Berlin: Part 1

Part one and part two of my Germany trip!

The next morning, I had yet another funny experience.  I got up at 5:45 to shower so that Claus could shower at 6, aim to leave for the train station at 7.  Of course when I got up I was the only one awake, and when I went to turn on the light for the bathroom, it just flickered and went out.  OH NO.  It was still dark out so despite the window, it was pretty dark in the bathroom.  I flicked the switch a few times and left it on, but the light stayed off.  Claus’ bedroom door was right next to the bathroom so I lightly knocked on the door and woke him up (he was thrilled, haha).  To summarize our conversation, I told him the light wouldn’t turn on, he said it had been doing that occasionally for about a week, I said I thought the light bulb turned off, he said he didn’t know where the bulbs were and that I should shower in the dark because it would an “experience.”  I think the dude just wanted to go back to sleep.

So that’s how I ended up showering in the dark in Germany!  I showered, got ready, packed up my bag, and went down to have breakfast with Claus’ dad Joseph.  Have I mentioned how amazingly nice he was??  We had a good time chatting.  He really likes the country and wants to visit the US- I told him about how my parents have a farm, and he said if he ever visits Rockridge (he never seemed to get that Rockridge is a school not a town, haha) he wants to see it.

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Cologne: Claus, Cathedral, and Clouds

Part one of my Germany trip!

The next morning (Thursday) we had breakfast at Claus’ house, then headed to Cologne at about lunchtime.  The first thing we did was go to the cathedral (called the Dom) right by the train station.  Claus took some pics of me before we went in; he took a couple of me just standing there, then told me to do something else, so I struck a funny pose!

I borrowed Claus’ mom’s coat for the weekend because my fleece was NOT warm enough. I bought a new coat before I went to London though!

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Cologne: Journey There!

I’m back from London!!  I had a wonderful time but now it’s back to the real world- preparing for classes and private English lessons, doing laundry, cleaning, sorting photos, blog posting… AND I picked up a terrible cold in Germany!  We’ll see how teaching goes this week- I have almost no voice and am super stuffed up.  Should be a good time.

That all being said, here is my first post about my Germany trip!  I actually wrote it before I left for London and I’m not sure when I’ll get around to doing the next installment, since school begins this week, but I promise I’ll get to it soon!  Enjoy 🙂

I learned a few things during my trip to Germany–my first big trip while here in Europe!  I learned that no matter how much you prepare, something unexpected will happen; I learned that sometimes you don’t prepare enough and something unexpected unsurprisingly happens; and I learned that when something unexpected happens, it all works out.  As you can probably guess, a few things happened during the trip that I had to learn to manage, but it wasn’t anything too big and I made it through and I had a great trip!  So without further ado… my trip 🙂

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Mountains with Africans

I’m back from Germany!!  …and I leave for London tomorrow.  I had an AMAZING time in Cologne and Berlin and just got done sorting the nearly 300 photos I took.  At least two, probably three, blog posts will be coming about my time there, but due to my penchant for things being in chronological order, you get this post first!

Last Sunday I went to church in Nice for the first time.  It was an English speaking church that I found through AngloInfo, a site for English-speaking expats all over the world, and I absolutely loved it!!  It reminded me of churches back home and I am definitely planning on going most Sunday evenings (the service is at 6:30).  Everyone there was so welcoming from the moment I walked up to the building and I met a few cool people: Kimberly, who is a New Yorker studying in Nice and who I might go to a women’s Bible study with, and these two guys from Africa who are in the French legion and were just visiting Nice.

The guys (Joubert and Derik) wanted to see Nice, so I met up with them on Monday afternoon.  We walked around Vieux Nice, went up to the Chateau, and got a drink.  It was fun to talk to them about life in Africa (Joubert is from South Africa and Derik is from Namibia) and what it’s like to be in the Legion (basically the French army).

The three of us up at the Chateau.

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Categories: Life in France, Travels | Tags: , , , , , , | 13 Comments

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