Auf Wiedersehen Sprachkurs!!

On a quick update from before, I have been saved by the delightful Yemi and her spare phone. The newly bought one still won’t charge and shall be returned from whence it came, hopefully along with a reimbursement.

Now for something completely different… My days of sitting in a room, lost out of my head and panicking about letting everyone else around me down, can now be reserved for English spoken seminars! As the German Intensive Language course has finally ended! I entered the country not knowing a word and one month later… now know a few of them. Finally, no more waking up at 6am or struggling to understand what the teacher is saying (Unless they’re speaking in a welsh accent, then it’s allowed), and no more having to spend ridiculous amounts of money on pointless books and CDs.

What’s that? The English Literature reading list?

…oh

But alas! Never mind for tomorrow we be off to Oktoberfest… for once actually celebrating it during October!! In a group 30 mixed nationalities we are striding our way to the station ready to show Munich why foreigners should never be allowed onto German soil.

Here’s to getting

drunk/wasted/pissed/slizzered/crunked/gazeeboed/michaeljackson’d/applesauced/moist!

Hell-ular, Hoe-bile Phones

Let me tell you a little story. Upon arriving in Germany, I was met with the need to buy a German Sim Card for my mobular telephone, as the roaming charges of using an English sim card would be horrendous and completely unthinkable. So, like any well-mannered individual, I compared prices and rates, shocked at the high prices but continuing before settling on a T-Mobile sim card.

But what’s this? My iPhone is still sim locked for another 3 months? Good heavens, I’ll have to buy a new phone, the cheapest T-mobile offered being €40. So I shelled out this cost, like any well-mannered gentleman. However, a weird occurrence took place; after 3 days, I had no credit left despite topping up €15. I went into T-mobile to discuss this and they told me they would send a letter with all my transactions so I can see what is happening. Understandable. This letter never arrived, so 2 weeks later and no further credit, I entered T-mobile again, asking for it to be sent again. This time, however the lady offered to get it through fax. What was faxed instead was a letter for me to sign that I was who I was. Which never arrived. The next day I returned and signed the fax. A week later, I finally receive the letter! What luck! But hang on… I am being charged 30c for every text and 50c per minute for every phone call. Good lord! This is because T-mobile connected me to the wrong operator. I asked, like any mild-mannered human being, if they would reimburse me for their mistake. They would not.

So off to Vodafone, with their deal of unlimited internet and texting and 9c for calls, which I was not aware of previously. But goodness, my T-mobile phone is simlocked as well, and will cost €100 to unlock. So the iPhone, and see if I can jailbreak it, afterall, Jailbreaking is completely legal and the only downside is voiding your warranty. But hang on, I have the old iPhone, for which the new technology doesn’t work and has now crashed my iPhone, for which only a complete reset, including losing all nostalgic and sentimental texts, will solve this. So like any mild mannered organism, I decide to buy a completely new, cheap phone for €22.

The battery of which is now refusing to charge up.

Phones of Germany, as one mild-mannered civilian once stated… fuck right off.

Down, down, down. The Ring Of Fire.

Such is the tradition of entering a new land, those who are first to arrive seem to destroy whatever they want. Which is why last night we had an impromptu, messy but altogether awesome bonfire. I fear for the park wardens who climbed up the Philosophenweg mountain to find a field littered with bottles, cans, cardboard boxes and the remnants of someone else having a wonderful time that they had to clean up.

At this time, I hasted to add I was merely an attendee, I had little to nothing to do with the organisation of said event. So… point your blame somewhere else, please? Please? No? Well, ok, fine, I accept your blame, hypothetical reader.

In other news, I have put the novel on hold, creativity has struck on an old project, and hopefully such a public announcement won’t act as a curse but we shall see. The novel will continue to be written, but when all the melodramatic research and panics of writer’s block take hold, I’ll indulge in the short story; “My Messy Friend” a Tom’s Midnight Garden sort of fiction that hopefully I won’t find too confusing.

For now however, I am off to an Irish Pub to watch an English football game. But first, there is a German student downstairs playing Johnny Cash, I need to go so I can shake his hand.

Diagnosis please?

Since Friday I’ve been “ill”. A term so broad it can cover anything, not as bad as “sick” but somehow worse than “under the weather”… Though I have to question what being above the weather would pertain. This has caused me to miss classes as I have just been unable to pull myself out of bed, which is the excuse I’m sticking with. It feels like a 24 hour sugar low. Normally I function regardless of illness but this one, I’ve found quite incapacitating. (Just as that word is to pronounce)

Every morning I wake up in pain, each joint hurts and my eyes sting, I feel extremely weak. However, if I lie in bed for a while, this fades. What replaces it is a short time of nausea. I come very close to throwing up each morning. This, erm… “morning sickness” then goes of its own accord and I am absolutely fine. For a few hours. For about 4 hours or so of the day, I have energy, I can do all the normal stuff a 21 year old can do. However, as the evening comes on, I become incredibly drained and tired. Not sleepy, just… heavy, I feel like I’ve aged about 60 years. I go to bed, but am unable to sleep (though this is natural insomnia for me) I then finally do drop off and wake up ready to start this all again.

I think I’m pregnant.

 

Germany is not good for me.

Opening your wallet in the morning after a night out is always a harrowing experience, especially when your memory kindly reminds you two hours later that to add to the empty space that had been a set of notes, you had also taken out numerous cash from an ATM. Which is why waking up on Sunday and realising that somehow I had gotten through…

4 Pints of Beer, 1 Pint of CherryBeer, 1 Glass of Wine, 2 Pints of Strongbow, 1 Bottle of Wine, and half a bottle of Jagermeister

all for under €15, makes you realise that this country is not going to do your health any favours. I can’t, surely, expect to be mature and control myself, can I? Money was the moral voice telling you not to buy any more drinks at the end of the night. I suppose this makes up for everything else being so ridiculously pricey. But good lord.

In other news, I am well and firmly grounded in writer’s block. I’ve become so consumed in research and history that now I can’t see the words for all the facts. Writing a fictional story set during a recent period of history feels too close to home and no sentence I construct can even begin to realise the magnitude of what happened. I write, and then read it back, and then promptly curse ever wanting to be a writer. With plays, I feel comfortable; I enjoy dialogue and feel like I’m actually getting somewhere. But with prose, I become bogged down with the weight of sentence after sentence, trying to create the world, engage the reader and be respectful to the time period from which I’m sourcing. Worst of all is that I find myself looking for distractions because then at least I can pretend that what’s in my head will sound good when on paper, but I’m trying to get over that.

Be right back, there’s a fly in my room and it needs to be killed.

On this day….

2009: I was sat in my room in London, the car had been packed the previous night. My room was missing essential items, my laptop, desk lamp, little tidbits here and there were absent, even my teddy bear/dog Barker had left! All because they were stuffed into the car, ready to travel down south to Surrey University. It was moving in day. After getting into the car, shouting “WAIT!”, leaping out the car, running to the toilet, leaping back into the car, we charged down to what would be my new home, filled with expectations and butterflies.

2010: I was sat in my room in Surrey, having remained in Guildford for most of the summer. My housemates and I were sat with a beer (each, not sharing you fools) listening to the Student radio, GU2’s broadcast about the moving in weekend. We took ourselves outside, realising how much had changed, and toasting a cheer to having met on this day one year previously. This action caused beer to “accidentally” rain down like a fountain. Throwing on a new T-shirt, I headed onto campus, meeting up with some MADSoc friends, we observed the Surrey Angels helping newbies moving, ourselves offering to carry one or two suitcases before going for a drink in the Student’s Union as a reward for all our hard work.

2011: I am sat in my room in Heidelberg, writing this whilst staring out at the mountains before me. Distance is just another game to play with, and right now the only distance I need to worry about is travelling into town to celebrate the Heidelberger Hebst a massive festival that takes over the entire city, consider it the posh man’s Oktoberfest. Lots of beers and sausages later and my home away from home away from home will seem a lot more blurry.

To those back home, it’s the start of a new year. Show those Fresher’s what Surrey can do and just what they have to live up to.

Toasted Philosophies.

Ok, got your brain caps on? Right, I want you to imagine your kitchen. Yes, that’s the one, in all its cooking glory, with hopefully a sink, and maybe a floor if you’re lucky. Now, take that wonderful creation of household convenience and relocate it into the street next to yours. From now on, that is where you will have to go in order to cook anything, ever. You will have to leave your house, and walk down the street to enter your kitchen.

That is what the accommodation in Bonhoefferstrasse tells us to do. The kitchen for all Erasmus students is located elsewhere on the campus. We’ve now made it into a social event; “Cooking dinner at 7, yeah?” and go together, but the convenience is indeed gone. It is for this reason I have bought a toaster!! A kettle and microwave are on the soon-to-be-scavenged list, as soon as I can find cheap enough ones.

That’s about the most exciting thing to have happened to me.

We also, however, made a trip to the famed Philosopher’s Walk. A trip that essentially involved hiking up a mountain. In the blazing sun. Still, was awesome, and I felt very enlightened, I must say. I also got to forget which country I was in, and practise my Japanese when asking for directions to possibly the ONLY Japanese couple in all of Heidelberg. The fact they applauded me for saying that we didn’t know where we were going was a tad disconcerting.

Easy crowd.

 

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