One month. That’s all the time I was allowed to stay here in Germany. Eight Kentucky girls set off to live with a new family in a new country and now we have become a sort of family. I could not see them for a couple of hours but run into them at the market and still have the same level of excitement that I would if I had not seen them in months. What am I going to do when I look out my window and don’t see beautifully colored house on the edge of town? What about my bike? Did I really just say I would miss my bike? And the school and the kids. I could sit here and tell you every little thing that I will miss about Germany but in reality, it is not just one thing, but the entire experience altogether. I have already lived through this once. I worked at Disney for seven months and worked with the best people and lived with my soulmates. However, I keep returning to find out that it never quite the same. I picture that this will be the same. I only hope that I am blessed to come back to this place and see the people that I have come to love. It just doesn’t seem fair that I did not get to spend more time here.
Like I mentioned before, this will be my last post. No, I am not leaving Europe quite yet, but my time student teaching is over. Tomorrow is my last full day here and I want to spend every second of it living up life to the fullest. My mom will come on Thursday and we will be off to Paris and London until Christmas. I am not sure what type of wifi I will have which just lets me think that I should end now. However, I will continue to post pictures on Facebook and will make a movie of my adventure and will try to post the link to either Facebook or this blog.
I have never blogged before, and honestly would never thought that people would read it. I can’t wait to look back and remember my adventures and remember the time I spent here. As my main man Walt once said, “it’s not goodbye… “It’s see you later”
Three more days. That’s all I have. How is that possible? Has it already been a month? It seems like just yesterday I was packing my stuff up to come here… How can I already be leaving? This experience really isn’t that fair. It just throws you into an experience and make you fall in love with people and then you have to leave… How am I supposed to leave my host family now? We’re family?!? I don’t want it to end quite yet? Can we just rewind time?
In other news. I was back at the high school today. It was great. These kids are so awesome to teach and they love to just talk to you. I have been so blessed just by everything that I have gotten to do this far in Germany. One month just isn’t enough.
From the place that inspires movies such as The Fault In Our Stars and song artist such as Imagine Dragons…. I give you Amsterdam! Amsterdam is a beautiful, great place full of exciting things to see. You got Madame T’s wax museum, Van Gogh museum, Rembrandt memorial, Anne Frank house, a huge shopping district, a beautiful river, bikes everywhere, and even a very uncomfortable to see red light district. Unfortunately today it was raining and cold and crowded so we didn’t get to go to all of the places I originally wanted to go to but that just gives me another reason to come back and visit! Amsterdam is BEAUTIFUL. Again… Pictures do not do it justice! I could spend all day just walking up and down the river!!! Just add it on my list of places I have been to!!
LOTTI AND I ON THE FAMOUS CROWN BRIDGE
TYPICAL HOLLAND WOODEN SHOES
I just want to start this post by saying that I am a very fortunate person. I have had the opportunity to witness so many beautiful and wonderful things. I have see the sunrise and sunset on the beach more times than I could count. I have sat in front of the ocean and taken in all the vastness of it. I have witnessed those sparkling glow in the dark parasites that sparkle at night along the shoreline. I have been hiking up beautiful trails and have witnessed a waterfall. Actually, I have drank from that waterfall and played under it and took in life from a natural approach. I have been whale watching and really made myself realize how small we humans really are. I seen sites such as Times Square, the Empire State Building, and Ground Zero. Sites that I could probably sit for hours and never fully take in everything that I see. And no one could deny that Disney’s “the Osborne Festival of Lights” or the Cinderella Castle at Christmas time is not absolutely breath taking the first time you see it.
I have also been to many places in Germany so far. I’ve been to Werne, Lünen, Dortmund, Berlin, Müenster, and now Köln (Cologne for us english folks). I have seen truly amazing things in every place I have been. However, stepping off the train and walking out of the station, I never imagined myself experiencing what I did. I don’t know if it was because I did not expect it so soon or if it was my ignorance about the dome, but I have never in my life had an experience such as this. There is a church called, the Dom, and it is the MOST BEAUTIFUL thing I have ever seen in my entire 22 years of living. I took one step and as soon as I saw it stopped dead in my tracks, gasped, jaw ajar, and I think I lost my breath. The five of us girls just stared at each other for a couple of minutes whispering oh my god, over and over. We didn’t even move for ten minutes , because of the rawness we felt with it, all we did was stand and look at it dumbfounded. I took thousands of pictures, but really… None of these pictures could do it justice. Even google images cannot do this building justice. Trust me, I have already looked to compare. The building started being built in the 1200s…. 1200s!!! And wasn’t completed until the 1800s. 600 years to build this church. It is a gothic style building which may make it more beautiful. And for 1.5€ you can take the thirty minute climb of 533 perfectly spiral the entire way up stairs to the viewing platform. No, not 533 total. 533 stairs up and 533 stairs down. 1066 beautifully small stairs altogether. I’m talking itty bitty, the walls are so close together I can reach my hands out and touch both walls at the same time with just my elbows being bent, sharing with the people coming down, half dipped stairs in from millions of people going up and down all the time, only lit from the windows… Staircase. Thank god I ride my bike every day and have to walk up four flights of stairs or I would have never made it. I actually found it quite easy for the long climb. And it would’ve been worth it even id it wasn’t. The view was unbelievable. Spectacular. Breathtaking. I could’ve stayed up there for hours. This building was truly a beautiful place to see.
We also got to see more of Köln. We walked up and down the Rhine river and got to see the historic district…. Absolutely beautiful. The building are all different colors and the ground is cobblestone and everyone has lights everywhere. We even got to tour the chocolate factory/museum! SO COOL!!!
Though I spent 44€ on a train ticket I later realized that I could’ve spent 10€ on… It was the most appreciated and awe inspiring place I have ever been to. Tschüss Köln, I hope to
see you again one day.
The dome lit up!
The view, 533 stairs up!
Historical old town on the Rhine!
The dome up close!
Today was a FANTASTIC DAY. Absolutely great! First of all, today was my final day at the Grottsfieldschule, which was the elementary school I was working at. It was very bittersweet. The entire experience was very hard. Teaching a foreign language is not easy work when you don’t know the primary language. However, I am still happy about the experience and the impact it has made on my teaching career. When I got home, I got to relax and have some me time while my family went to Dortmund for their grandmothers birthday and finish up Sinterklauss shopping. Today we got to celebrate!!! I got three gifts from my family!! A pair of comfy socks, a new black scarf, and get this…. A HARRY POTTER WAND!!!! Neville Longbottom’s wand to be exact. I literally eeped with excitement. It is probably my favorite Christmas gift yet!!! Next, my family opened up gifts for my mother. My host mom read a card and started crying my host family started crying and then started devising ways for me to stay. It was very emotional. Next week must not come. After presents, dinner was served. We had a small grill in the center of the table where we all grilled things that we wanted! DINNER WAS SO MUCH FUN! Seriously, I love this place!
My class on my last day at the elementary school!!
Lotti in her new Christmas dress. Seriously, she’s adorable. I’m such a proud older sister.
Lotti giving me dance lessons!
Good friends. Good home. Good family. Good food. Good time. I like to think of life as a book that is currently being written. Yes, there are bad parts and bad people in your “book” but where would the fun be if you only read the same story over and over. As the pages turn, people change and although change has been one of my biggest fears growing up, it is something that I have realized is so important. How many people can read a book and stop to think that “this is the moment” “this is the moment that something good and wonderful and beautiful will happen to my character” No one votes for anything bad to happen to the protagonist when reading their book. Everyone roots for you. But it is always exciting to know that you have no idea what is written on the next page and once you finally get there, it was worth it. Everything that lead up to that point. My chapter in Germany will unfortunately be ending in one short week. But for now, this experience, will hopefully be one that I can look back on and say… That was the moment.
It is sometimes a struggle teaching students who don’t speak English. First of all, I like to say jokes and tell stories and overall be friendly… But that doesn’t work when kids just stare at you blankly and have no idea what you say. However, today, I finally had my I love these kids moments. I unfortunately have to say that almost all german kids are absolutely adorable. I want to take some home with me. Seriously they could almost all be catalog models…. So so so cute. My funny story today is about a little boy. Jessica was explaining directions on how to do something….which in itself is a complicated task. You have to do a lot of work. You need examples, student examples, everything read, actions, a blood sample and maybe a kidney. Okay, joking on the last two, but it’s hard work to make sure they understand. Anyways, she asked if they got it and most kids nodded or gave a thumbs up, except for one kid in the back. Keep in mind these are non english speakers in the third grade…8 years old. He took a breath, smoothed out his shirt, and then calmly said.. “Thank you for the information.” It was so quiet and Jessica, the cooperating teacher and I just lost it. Tears rolling down my face, he just looked so proud and didn’t understand why we were laughing. Oh man do kids say the darnedest things.