Thursday, November 8, 2012

Classes, Norderney, Amsterdam Oh My!

Beautiful shot of Amsterdam from a boat.

   The past few weeks have been a bit on the hectic side. First with classes starting, my trip to Norderney (Emily briefed over it, but I will go into some details), and my trip to Amsterdam. I know I just let you know what is going on in this post right of the bat, so why read it? I’ll tell you, because I am going to explain what is going on with me, yes that right I am just that important. ;)
  My first three weeks have been amazing. The German university system is different from the States system. The seminars only meet once a week and there is really no homework! It is awesome, but very very strange since the professors have so little time to teach/ lecture us.  Two of my classes had waiting lists (they still let me attend as if I’m not on the waiting list) and that makes me very say. Luckily, I’ve been able to get into one of my classes. I’m still waiting on the other class. The professor lets me attend and participate so all is well for now. My other two classes are with the same professor. She is pretty awesome too.
    She is my German grammar and reading teacher. She speaks clear and if we really don’t understand what  is going on she explains slower, then slower, and finally will find out what word we are not understanding  and say it in quickly in English. I love her! She is strict and doesn’t take any crap, but still understands we are learning and sometimes we don’t understand everything. Not only do I enjoy my professor in these classes, but my classmates. I know over half of them from orientation, but the others have been here for a while.  I get to hear so many different accents and I realize I am not the only one who is learning, and possibly having troubles, German.
On the beach. Such a lovely day.
     I do get a break from my German classes twice a week though. One is my Dialectology and we are studying American dialects! I get to see what Germans think of our dialects and accents. I’m in this class with another American and the professor asks us for our opinion on the dialects. The class is in for a surprise from us. My other class is History of the English language. I love love love this class! We don’t learn too much about our language besides grammar. I can tell you that English has a huge and long history.  I can’t wait to learn more in this class. I am just really sad that the class only meets once a week and only for 90 minutes. This is a class that could meet 4 days a week and I would attend. The professor needs the extra time too. He is like my anthropology professor back home, that’s for you my anthro people.
Told ya I poked one. Also, isn't that a pretty shade of blue?
    Now on to the trip to Norderney! As Emily mentioned in the past post, the trip was postponed to the next day. Miss Emily didn’t go because she was very sick. =( I went and had a blast. I got to know a few more students better. I also got to ride on a boat! Emma, one of the internationals, found this funny because I even played the song to go with it. Once on the island we did a lot of walking. So much that I had to cave to my urges and buy an ice cream cone. The Spanish kids couldn’t believe I was eating ice cream because they thought it was cold. It was about 50, nothin’ big ya know.  After walking around and eating my ice cream we ended up on the beach. On the beach I got to see my first jellyfish. I kicked, poked, flipped, and took pictures of almost every single jelly fish I could see. Again, Emma laughed and yelled at me to stop kicking the bloody things.  It was such a blast. I hope to go back sometime, maybe with Emily.
Stretchin' after a long bus ride. ;)
    The weekend after the trip to Norderney I went to Amsterdam for the day. This trip was so much fun. I went with a bunch of international students, as always. We only went for the day, but that wasn’t enough. I want to go back for the weekend to see more. The city is simply amazing! So many bridges, canals, and people! I hate huge crowds, but I sucked it up for the chance to see so many amazing sights. Most of the girls went to the Ann Frank Museum, while Alex and I just walked around and explored a few things. When we all met up we found this nifty little pancake restaurant. I had some pretty epic pancakes. I think I told Alex that they were “life changing pancakes”. They were that awesome.
     As I said before I want to come back for longer than a day. There is just so much to do that one day doesn’t do it justice. I could go on for hours about Amsterdam, but I won’t. I might go into more detail when I go back.  I will stop here for now. Sorry for the late update and brief descriptions of what I’ve been up to. It has just been really busy and what not. I hope you enjoyed! Have a fun and safe weekend/week. Make good choices. ;)

Tante Ashley  (thanks to Rebecca for calling me this now)

Oh before I forget, my tips:
     Don’t over think what you want to say in your host language. I tend to over think what I want to say, don’t.  Learn from my mistakes. Except today I took my own advice! I ended up using slang without realizing it, because I just let it flow.

As much as home seems awesome take in the beauty that surrounds you. I love Michigan, but Oldenburg/Germany is just as awesome. I think I’m going to have to make room in my heart for another place. 

   Smile. Never forget this. It brightens up the darkest corners. I smile everyday even when I just want to crawl under a blanket and hide from the world. Just. Smile. 

Here are some photos I couldn't make fit into the text! Enjoy!!!
Even though I am tired I am still smilin'. Such a beautiful city.
Any day that isn't a full on down pour is a good day
These leaves are bigger than my face!
Another view from the boat in Amsterdam.
See I am a good student!
The beauty of fall on Wallstra├če, Wall stret, aka Bar street!

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