Friday, May 24, 2019

Five on Friday #196

EINS - This Week

Monday: School, Doner with Teh Deutsch Asien for lunch, then home for homework and flashcard creation.


Tuesday: School, ramen for lunch (it was disappointing), then dinner was out since I needed to go to the grocery store for my breakfast cheese (livin' like a real German up in here).  I picked Tuesday as my "GoPro" day.  I recorded my commute to/from school.  I wanted to record some stuff during class, but didn't have anywhere to place the camera and the teacher/school is crazy strict about permission forms for showing people in videos.. so it just wasn't worth it.  The video isn't compiled and edited/created yet, but maybe I'll share it where when it's done.  IDK.  We'll see.  It's not like a fantastic work of art because I'm carrying around an action camera with a selfie stick and the camera bobs around like crazy.. but if you are interested in what it looks like to take the train in Germany, it's probably interesting to you.


When the stove takes too fucking long, so you use the instant boiler to make ramen.

Kölsch with dinner.

In case you want to know what delicious looks like (and tastes like):
THIS IS IT.
Translation: pan fried potatoes with white asparagus with ham, hollandaise sauce, and a metric ton of cheese.
I'll be going back there for dinner before I leave.

After dinner, I stopped by the Eiscafe for ice cream...
It was right by the grocery store.
I have no will power.
#SorryNotSorry

Wednesday: School, tried to get boba tea during our 1200 break, but the line was out the door and I made it there at 12:03 and they opened at 12.  FML.  Had legit Chinese food for lunch with some schoolmates (who were Chinese and Japanese (which was great), so after I explained that I couldn't eat spicy food, but I trusted them, they ordered several dishes which we shared family style = wise life choice by me (self high-five)).  Then, my worst fucking nightmare happened.  I asked Googly to get me home and when I went to the platform to the subway, IT WAS CLOSED.  I tried other platforms nearby and THEY WERE ALL CLOSED AND WTFFFF?!?!?!  I was messaging Teh German and Teh Running Bestie and Teh German did some searching and learned that there had been a fire in an electrical room and they closed the platforms because of smoke.  FUCKING CHAOS.  Police and fire vehicles were all over the streets, so vehicle traffic was fucked up, AND SO WAS public transit.  I ended up finding a bus that would get me a 10 minute walk from the flat, so that's what I did.  I was so overwhelmed I didn't even get a photo of what my worst nightmare looks like.  That's a blogger fail, but trust me, it happened.  Of course it happened while I am here.  Why wouldn't some sort of public transit fail happen while I'm around?

After I finally got home, it was time for work/homework and a nap because I've been soooooo exhausted, and then up and out again for the final Stammtisch, where we had to wait over an hour for our food, a.fucking.gin.  Me = pissed.  We have one last dinner gathering and I asked if it was at the brewery we went to for Stammtisch because if I was told yes, I wouldn't have been going.  Nopeeeeeee.  Not gonna wait an hour on my food for 3 weeks in row.  Not happening.

Teh Deutsch Asien likes to try new dark chocolates.
While this wasn't dark chocolate, it was PINK chocolate from ruby cocoa beans, so she tried this pink KitKat with me.

#FoodPornLife
We killed some food.
#NOTSORRY

May 2020 cannot come soon enough.

#WhenInGermany #RadlerLife

Thursday: School, finally obtained a boba tea (it was a fail), then I met Auntie P at Kö, the extremely upscale shopping area in Düsseldorf.  And by extremely upscale I mean... Tiffany's, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, etc.  Like, places my cheap ass doesn't shop at.  Our first stop was lunch.  We ate at an Italian place.  After lunch we did some window shopping, then we went on a hunt for boba tea that wasn't disgusting and was unsuccessful because they only had tapioca boba and i was NOT suffering through that shit again.  NO.  Instead, we found a cafe and ordered dessert and chatted for a while.  Eventually, we decided it was time to go home.  I managed to get back to the flat with zero issues, Auntie P did walk with me part of the way to the platform just in case, which I appreciated.. what with my public transit issues.

I tried a new boba tea from the place by the school and this was their "special" with tapioca.
Coincidentally, this is the day I learned that I fucking hate tapioca boba and anything that is supposed to taste like brown sugar/caramel.  Strawberry boba pearls or NO BOBA TEA.

When I got home, I was feeling motivated, so I decided to take care of my laundry situation.  Aka, the Laundry Fairy made an appearance for the first time since the end of April.  I had to search the entire flat to find where my host put the laundry pods I purchased, but I finally found them.  I borrowed a large bag she'd left out (lucky me), and headed to the Waschsalon (laundromat).  I managed the washer and dryer without too much #LanguageBarrier issues.  While the laundry washed and dried, I worked on homework, to include recording a video for the 10 "vlogs" I have to turn in for my Citadel credit for my German study abroad.  These videos have been very difficult for me to start doing because ... I'm camera shy.  I don't mind photos, but video is another story... PLUS in German?  Kill me now.  I also had grand hopes of doing awesome videos with edits and showing cool shit, but those days have passed.  Now, I'm just talking to my cell phone and describing my days or why I was at the Waschsalon recording a video (because my Host didn't want me to use the washing machine).  Whatever.  I don't think these videos are going down in a history book.


Anyways, after I got home and put my laundry away I worked on homework until it was time to talk to Teh German and then bedtime.

Friday: School, then I went out with Teh Deutsch Asien for lunch and exploring.  First, we stopped at the boba tea place so I could get some boba that wasn't fucking disgusting and THEN we went exploring.  We wanted to check out a market, but it was rather disappointing and very small.  There was only one stand selling food, so we didn't even bother.  Instead, she led us to a restaurant she had seen and we had lunch.  It said it was a mexican/tapas restaurant, but it really wasn't very mexican-ish at all.  We both had fish dishes, which were pretty good.


I love these little Bücherei (book store/place) around town.
Granted, all the books are in German, but the concept brings me joy.

A radler with lunch.

Fish with risotto with tiny shrimps in it.

After lunch, we hit up an ice cream place.


After ice cream, we stopped at a few shops, to include a super adorable chocolate shop.

Translation: Everything is good as long as there is chocolate.

Translation: Life is to short for bad chocolate.

Translation: made with love and sweetly packed.

Everything looked delicious.

After the chocolate store, we headed to the Rheinturm (the Düsseldorf Media Tower).  Teh Deutsch Asien hadn't been there before and I was willing to go again.  Unfortunately, a screaming kid really ruined the experience for me, but I survived.  After the tower, we headed to the Ghery buildings, which are famous for their weird architecture... annndd it sprinkled on us, despite being a gorgeous day.  Because, why wouldn't it rain every day in May when I'm here?

Translation: Welcome to the Rhine Tower

Look, a photo of me!

We are adults.

OBVIOUSLY.







After a quick photo shoot, we headed back to the Rheinuferpromenade (Rhine Promenade (aka the boardwalk)) and walked to my favorite selfie wall.


This interesting contraption told about energy use and some other sciency stuff that I didn't feel like reading.

The Rhine is a HUGE shipping river for Germany.

The house fronts never get old.

Favorite selfie wall!!!
It's too bad I look so fucking tired...
Because I am so fucking tired.

Adults.
We.are.adults.

After selfies, we headed back to our respective flats.  I had some work I wanted to accomplish and plenty of never ending fucking homework to do.  Instead, I gave myself a pass on homework, tried to do my work stuff, unsuccessfully because slow internet, then decided to take some time to blog.  I did take a blogging break to record a vlog while I was feeling motivated and before it got dark.  I must do these when I have motivation because I need like 7 more freaking videos and that annoys me.

I will talk to Teh German when he gets off work and then it will be my bedtime.  FUN!




ZWEI - Random Shit

-When I arrived in Germany I feared that I'd have so much free time and I would be bored.  Far, far from it.  At this point, I feel like I have no time to do anything else.  I try to make time to go out and do things since my time here is limited and I ensure that my homework is complete (although not always as soon as it's due).  I didn't even have time to work on this post all week, that's where I'm at in life.. and I imagine the schedule will not get back to normal until we get back to America.  My computer isn't used to the lack of action it's getting!

-I have a favorite selfie spot in Düsseldorf.  #NotSorry

-My host lady didn't want me using her washing machine.. to the point that SHE told ME that I had enough to clothes to last until she got back from her trip, and I'd be fine.  Rather than deal with that, I just said if I need to wash clothes, I'd figure it out myself, and told her ok whatever.  After realizing that I definitely did not have enough bras or socks or underwear, I was on the hunt for a laundromat.  I found one and washed my laundry all by myself (gasp!) on Thurs evening.  I didn't have any struggles and it was kinda surreal.

-But the universal balance is that when I was searching for the delicates bags, I broke one of the latches on an outside closet door.  Soooo I have to fess up to that when she returns.  Oops.

-I learned on Thursday or Wednesday (I can't remember, it's been that kind of week) that our last day of class is Tuesday.  I didn't realize this when I scheduled my exam for a fucking Friday 2 months ago.  Because the information I got said the class went to the 30th.  Except that the actual last day is for people taking the exam after a class.. meaning I could have taken my exam on Wednesday, but since I didn't know until a week prior, there was no way to change it.  I asked.  They said the test was full.  Also, the fact that I cried about this in the office after I asked and was told no was probably a little irrational, but it was a 100% PMS reaction, which makes sense because I've been tired AF and bloated AF.

-My water bottle dropped slid out of my backpack pocket and then fell out of the train as I was getting off so now it's got 2 dents in the bottle.  Thankfully, it's not super wobbly.  Or rather, unfortunately it's not super wobbly, which means I have no reason to buy a new one... lol

-I talked to Teh German for the last time tonight before I GET TO SEE HIM!!! YYYAAYYY and boo.  When he said that he wouldn't talk to me on Saturday, I actually was super disappointed.  Like, I know it's for a good reason, he's on his way here.. but dayum yo.. I have needs.  Husband needs.  Need to talk to Husband needs.

-There is no microwave here and the shower head is not mounted to the wall.  I know there are people who actually use a head connected via tube or pipe or whatever you want to call it from the tub facuet to shower with and not a wall mounted shower head, but it annoys the fuck out of me.  It's exhausting.  I just want to wash myself and not be touched by anything.

-I'm also over feeling like a failure because I'm not doing well in the class.  I'm over having and doing homework.  I'm over missing my Husband and my dogs and my friends and my bed and a shower where the shower head is mounted to the wall. 

I enjoyed some of the adventures and getting to speak German when I could, but honestly.. I'm fucking over it and I'm ready to be on vacation and not having to think about things I MUST DO for 2 weeks and then being home.


DREI - From My Phone Shit


Food uncovered in the fridge makes me rationally angry.
And it fucking smells.
I hate it.
This is why I have a countdown.

Those sparkly shoes.

Cocaine and Caviar..
DAFUQ?

This has been my favorite graffiti of all the street I've seen.

Also, I've shared some interesting shit on Snapchat as well, so ya know, follow me there if you're interested in more things.

VIER - From the Internet Shit






Oh, you think you can beat me internet?
NO.  I will show you my super powers...
AKA, I can use TeamViewer like a motherfucking boss.
Sooo to get around this, I signed into TeamViewer on my work computer and ordered dog meds.
#LikeABoss



FÜNF - Things that made me happy this week


  1. Teh Deutsch Asien sharing her chocolate with me.  This was especially important on Thursday when I had a meltdown.  It was literally like the Dementors came and I was super sad then I had chocolate and everything was better.  Ironically, after telling Teh Running Bestie about my woes, she suggested I have some chocolate and I explained that was exactly the solution I employed.
  2. The host lady being on vacation this week, which means that my shit stayed plugged in ALL WEEK LONG.  DO NOT CURR.
  3. Getting my flashcards completed.. even if I didn't use them a single time all week long....
  4. Adventures and new places and trusting other people to made food choices for me.
  5. The very ghetto painters tape keeping the T key in place on my keyboard.  It's not coming off anymore and I will be sending in my laptop for repairs when I return to Charleston. Boo/Yay.
  6. Getting the laundry washed without problems.  I always assume there will be problems when I do new things.  I am always pleasantly surprised when there are none.  #ExpectTheWorst
  7. 2 more days of class.  
  8. Planning activities next week with Teh German.
  9. A medal this weekend.  :)
  10. GETTING A HUG FROM TEH GERMAN IN 1 DAY 11 HOURS.



Happy Friday, Gentle Readers.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Three Things

Three things I lost my shit over this week
  1. Missing my train from Amsterdam
  2. The underground train stations being closed because of a fire in a tunnel
  3. Not being able to find where my Host put the laundry pods I bought

Three signs I'll never hang in my house
  1. Eat Pray Love/any variation of this
  2. Bible verses
  3. Popular Renaissance artist prints

Three things I neglected this week
  1. Following my Host's rules about unplugging everything when I leave
  2. Photo editing
  3. Sleep

Three things I've tried recently
  1. Boba tea
  2. Beers
  3. Traveling all alone


Three house things I hate doing
  1. Cleaning the hair monster from the drain
  2. Emptying stinky trash
  3. Cleaning the bathroom, but especially the shower/tub.

Three things I wear all the time
  1. Jeans
  2. A hair tie
  3. My earrings and wedding band

Three things I never wear
  1. Hats
  2. Scarves
  3. Costume jewelry

Three books on my kindle waiting to be read
  1. Every Kindle First book ever
  2. The Art of Racing in the Rain (a reread)
  3. Maybe in Another Life

Three things I have to do but don't feel like doing
  1. Go the German laundromat to do laundry
  2. German homework
  3. Study for the B1 exam


Three things I'm looking forward to
  1. Seeing Teh German in a few days!
  2. Going to Italy
  3. Laying in my bed at home, home AND snuggling with the dogs.


Sunday, May 19, 2019

Weekend Review {05/20}

FRIDAY

I actually shared what I did on Friday on Friday's blog.
An upside of being in Germany is that my evening is US daytime, which means if I post a blog "late", it's not really late.  Downside is that when I write Friday posts at the end of the day, I usually include the day's activities in the post.  Yolo, bitches.

If you don't remember:

  • I went to school.
  • I got my conch earring switched out since the new earring (from last month) was infected.

  • Teh Deutsch Asien came home with me for Reibekuchen, it was greasy and delicious.
  • We went to the hookah bar down the street.
  • We had Spaghetti Eis
After that, I came home and got ready for bed.  I videoed with Teh German and kinda Teh Running Bestie and then it was bedtime since adventures were coming!



SATURDAY

Up at normal time on Saturday to get started on Amsterdam adventures.  No issues getting ready and catching the train to the main station to catch my bus.  I picked up McDonald's for breakfast, and then searched for my bus.  After having to ask, I found it.  When I had walked by the first time, it wasn't there.. sooo I give myself a pass on this.

The bus took me half way, then we hiked to the train station and caught a train into Amsterdam.  Along the train ride, I saw two cows having sex.. so I mean, seems like a pretty Amsterdam thing to see.  I arrived in Amsterdam shortly after noon and spent a few hours wandering around.



I visited several markets, grabbed lunch, and eventually navigated myself to my AirBnB.

Welcome to Amsterdam.

There was some sort of Asian festival going on.

My hot dog was nearly as burnt as this photo would suggest.
In fact, it was quite perfect.

DAT ASSSSSSS.

#BookHunter

Left: Mini pancakes
Right: Stroopwaffle (w/ caramel)
Made fresh right in front of my face.
THEY WERE BOTH DELICIOUS.

I was very confused about what that thing was in the middle, then I realized it was for bikes!
#AmsterdamLife

These stairs up to the AirBnB had me paranoid I was going to break my leg.

At the AirBnB, I relished in a bed that was extremely comfortable.


I even took a nap with the door open!
Despite a nearby neighbor who was LOUD AF.

My AirBnB wasn't far from the Anne Frank House, but I had searched for tickets earlier in the week and they were already sold out.  Nonetheless, I wanted to go by and at least say I'd been by.  As I was assessing the situation at the house, a man approached me and asked if I wanted to buy a ticket from him, that he had an extra because his friend wasn't able to make it.  I asked how much and he said 10€ and I said, YES PLEASE.

I'm gonna be honest.  Visiting the Anne Frank house was never on my bucket list.  In fact, it wasn't until last week that I even connected Anne Frank to Amsterdam.  But I wasn't going to pass up the opportunity if it fell in my lap like that.

Many years ago, I read that parts of the published book had been edited (a merging of her 2 different versions by her father) and it made me suspicious of what else had been changed.  I'm pretty sure I read the book in middle school, but remember nothing other than the fact that her family lived in a "closet" for 2 years. 

Fun fact, it was not a closet.  It was actually a pretty large space, in my opinion.  They could move around freely and had furniture and kinda lived like normal except for the part where they had to be super quiet and never leave the house.  There was more than just the Frank family (4 persons) in the attic, so I'd imagine it was cramped, but they had a bathroom and a kitchen and a fully functional living space, just on a super small scale. 

But, for sure, the worst part is that they survived in hiding for almost the entire war and then almost everyone died shortly before the war actually ended.


After Anne's house, I headed to dinner.  Everywhere was slammed, so I ended up eating a burger from a place where I could find a seat at the bar, and then went somewhere else for dessert, also sitting at the bar.  I wasn't impressed with my dessert at first, but when I put it in my mouth, the hassle of not getting a menu for half my life and then waiting the other half of my life to order was forgotten.  I wanted to lick the plate... I did not.  But I wanted to. 


After foods, I headed back to the AirBnB.  I watched a few episodes of Friends From College on Netflix, which I don't think I'll continue on with.  I struggle with the over-dramaticness of Keegan-Michael Key.  Maybe 2 episodes isn't enough, but I just learned they cancelled the show, so apparently it wasn't so great anyways?

Since it was GEGR Picnic day, Teh German was occupied, so I went to bed fairly early since I had an early wake up the next morning.


SUNDAY

For all of my photography loving life, I've wanted to visit the tulip fields of Holland.
Quick education:
Holland is the name of the province where most of the tulips are grown.
Holland is located in the country: The Netherlands.

I dreamed of their spectacular glory and ALL THE PHOTOS I could take.

More education:
Tulip farmers DGAF about the flowers.  In fact, they remove the flower right after it blooms, which makes the bulb (in the ground) healthier or bigger or something beneficial for selling them.  Soooo all the fast fields of tulips aren't really a thing for very long.  When the bulbs are harvested, the plants are used a fertilizer (kinda) for the fields.  It's like a whole process.  Anyways.

I went to Keukenhof (a popular flower garden) on the last day of the season.  I didn't know what this meant.  The tour guide said, "Despite being the last day, there will be still be plenty of flowers to see!"  I imagined my fields of glory.

There were no fields of tulips.  There were a lot of beds with tulips (and some other related varieties of flowers), but a LOT of the beds were just green, with no flowers, because the blooming season is over, despite how cold it has been there.  That's not to say I didn't take 500 photos, I did, but I expected something different.

I had scheduled an Uber the night before, because I didn't want to deal with the train and getting a ticket and blah blah blah that early.  Annoyingly, you have no idea if the Uber you've scheduled will actually show up or not, it depends on if a driver accepts it, which you don't know of until a driver accepts it, which is generally when they are on the way.... Soooooo, that was stressful.  But the Uber driver did come, dropped me off at the meeting point for the tour, I found the tour office, checked in, got my ticket, and we were loaded and on the bus in due time.

100% glad that no one was with me for my flower garden session.  At first I was like, "Meh, 4 hours is going to be way too much time."  We had to be back at the bus by 1.  At 12:30 I had to tell myself that I was not allowed to stop for ANY.MORE.DETOURS.MEGAN.LYNN.  It was difficult.  I kept finding flowers and I'd ask myself if I'd already shot that variety or not.. but maybe not, so maybe I should get another, just in case?  Yes, I know I'm ridiculous.  If someone had been with me, I would have felt guilty for all the time I was spending with different angles and focusing on different flowers and taking both landscape and portrait oriented photos.  I know that flower/macro photography is not as interesting for others as it is for me, which makes me feel like I need to just skip some stuff so I don't torture the person I'm with.

Shitty breakfast to start the day:
Cold dutch apple pie (it would have been INFINITELY better if it was warm) and hot chocolate.



I won't lie.  I didn't really enjoy the smells.
Also, there was a LOT of lilies in one of the buildings I was in and I could feel my head start to hurt.

Top: Expectation
Bottom: Reality

x250ish on my camera.

I did make sure to take a few selfies, because.. why the fuck not?

A nice couple offered to take a photo of me in my new kicks.

I made it back in time. 

We made it back to the city before 2, which meant I had time to go into the Central area and grab something for lunch... and by something, I mean fries.. and then head back to the train station to catch my train and get back to Düsseldorf.

Fries w/ "garlic sauce" are officially my new favorite thing.
And "garlic sauce" seems like the European version of ranch dressing.

I was at the correct platform waiting on the train about 25 minutes prior to it's arrival.  And then.. a train came early and left before the time that my train was supposed to arrive (per the board)... and I missed my train because I thought it wasn't the right train.

Which meant I also missed my bus back to Düsseldorf, since there was only an 11 minute "layover" between.  I almost called Teh German in tears.  But I knew he couldn't do anything and I knew the longer I waited to solve this problem, the longer it would be before I was back in Düsseldorf.  So I used Google Maps to find the way home... and only proceeded to get more frustrated after I went to a different station to look for the Flixbus and couldn't find it after walking around the station 2 times.

Finally, I went into the station and asked for help.  I explained what had happen and a super cool dude hooked me up with new train tickets to get back to Düsseldorf and he even printed out the route and reviewed the platforms the trains would be at for me.  Like, I wanted to hug him, but I'm not a hugger and he was a stranger, but I was just relieved that someone helped me and that I would get back Sunday night.

As I'm walking around trying to find a particular bus stand, I spotted this #TooSoon sign.

When I boarded the train, as directed, I looked over and saw the fucking bus stand that I had been looking for.  Soooo, overall, I paid for 2 trips to/from Amsterdam.  You're welcome DE Bahn system for my monies.  It didn't take much longer to get back via train and while I was relieved to be at the Düsseldorf Hbf, finally getting off the train at my stop was like a weight had been lifted.

My host lady had already left for her vacation week, which meant I had the flat all to myself.  That meant setting up Alexa and jamming and putting my shit away and getting settled in.. and writing this post.  Then it was chat with Teh German time, and sleepy time.

______________________________________________

My trip was SUPER great... until I missed my train.  Teh German tried talking me down (I did start texting him after I got on the train to the 2nd station to look for the bus stop) and telling me not to be so hard on myself, but I'm my own worst enemy.  I finally broke and there were tears.  But it was also a relief.  I've been frustrated so many times over public transportation and I've not let it get to me.  I've quickly moved on from being frustrated and got shit done.. But this time, it cost me 50€ (if you don't include the 30€ that I paid for the original ticket back).  Obviously, I'm ok, but sooo much build-up finally cracked me and I had some leaky eyes on the train back.  I even posted my crying pic on FB, because it is part of the journey.  I was really appreciative of all the encouragement/cheerleading from my friends. 

There are now 500+ more photos to edit.. sooo that's a fun "one day" adventure.

So far this week is kinda quiet:
-School, duh.
-Meet with Auntie P on Tuesday for hanging out and dinners.
-Sunday: Run with Teh German Runner ANNNNDDDD TEH GERMAN ARRIVES!!!!