Tag Archives: bernie

FOUR MONTHS, zusammengefasst

It’s been an extremely long time since I’ve written on here, but I will not apologize for this absence. Frankly, my dears, I have been having a damn good time and couldn’t be bothered with updating! No offense, or anything, but life is for living, is it not?

The weather has been INSANE and beautiful as of late. Today, it got up to 33 degrees Celsius!

(91 degrees Fahrenheit, I know you were wondering.)

(91 degrees Fahrenheit, I know you were wondering.)

It’s June, time is almost up here in the great D-Land of my heart, but the past few months have not been wasted, and the coming 24 days shall not be, either.

Since we last spoke, I’ve had many things happen, but I will only detail a few of them here.

I went to Berlin and met up with the OU Salzburg group! ‘Twas a delight, truly, and I think I showed them a bit of what Army Chelsea of 2011 was like on all those group excursions. At a time in my life, I was, indeed, a badass.

Bernie & Marianne came to visit in Leipzig! That was pretty sweet, they shared their intimate knowledge of our collective city and I got to find some hidden gems that I’d not yet stumbled upon. Shout out to Substanz, the most delishhhh place in Reudnitz, probably (possibly).

I had the beautiful privilege of visiting my roommate Vanessa in her hometown, Wittenburg! Saw that 95 Theses door, hellooooo Martin Luther! HISTORY COMES TO LIFE SOMETIMES, GUYS.

At times more literally than others.

At times more literally than others.

Another pastime of mine became what I’m now referring to in my head as STADTWALKS, just long, often aimless walks around Leipzig for hours at a time. I’ve come upon some pretty cool things. One day I took a train out to a tiny village 15 minutes away from Leipzig and decided to walk all the way back to my house, a trek that Google maps correctly estimated to be 4 and a half hours. Why would I do this, you might ask, why on earth would I do this!? Well friends, out in the tiny town of Beucha, one finds a truly delightful sight.

MY HAIR IS SO RED

MY HAIR IS SO RED

THIS IS THE BERGKIRCHE BEUCHA! So pretty. So so pretty. I couldn’t deal I almost lost my shit marbles.

On the way walking back from Beucha, I got yelled at by a scary German farmer man for taking a picture of his crumbling barn. He chased me down the street and wouldn’t believe that my intentions were anything but malicious, and told me that you just can’t DO that, this isn’t AMERICA after all.

Preach.

I explored the Sächsische Schweiz! I was treated to homemade, traditional cuisine at my lovely mentor teacher’s house! I went back to Salzburg! Because I love Salzburg. And I can’t not be in Salzburg for very long, apparently.

Stiegl for life.

Stiegl for life.

Luke was here! We went to the zoo! Kat was here! We went to Berlin! Maddy was here! We stayed out until six in the morning really enjoyed catching up!

Goth Week came and went, Leipzig filled up with the darkest of souls for a long weekend and oh my, so many heimliche pictures were taken. I sort of wish that was what Leipzig was like ALL the time, like 1/3 of the city just always walked around in period Victorian wear with dog leashes around their necks, painted from head to toe as a skeleton.

What a world, you guys.

What a world, you guys.

And now, we are in the throws of Stadtfest, what has been a wonderful week-long celebration of Leipzig’s 1000th birthday.

That’s right. ONE THOUSANDTH BIRTHDAY. Leipzig has been around for ONE. THOUSAND. YEARS. Take a moment and try to fathom that, because seriously, you cannot.

The coming days of June promise to be warm, sunny, and delightful. WHO CAN SAY what is yet to come, but I’m going to Berlin tomorrow (again) with Layla and Nathan (not again), so that’s already a good sign.

Perhaps I’ll update you on that trip once it happens, and perhaps not. Holding a grudge is a sign of weakness,

LOVE YOU, CHELS

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España, muy bien, gatos y pantalones, por favor

In case you were curious as to what my post’s title is all about (no, I’m not crazy, yes, I’m very bad at Spanish)… I’m going to Spain! You might have guessed. But I’m going, like, really really soon.

THIS IS WHERE I AM GOING TO BE.

THIS IS WHERE I AM GOING TO BE.

Woaaaaah, you might say. When the hell did that happen? Well, my friends, it happened like, five days ago. I said to my pal Layla, “Hey, Layla– Barcelona?”

And then Layla was like, “You know what? Yeah, yeah I think so.”

And that’s the story of how Layla and I ended up traveling to Spain.

But really though, it’s not much more in-depth than that. I’ve been really hoping to go to Spain ever since last year, when it seemed like everyone I knew in Germany had either 1) already been or 2) somehow already finalized plans for a trip without me. I KNOW, RIGHT? I got over it, but I thought my hopes and dreams of attaining Spain were far off, drifting even farther, away from me… Until one night, when I got so preoccupied by the idea that I posted on Facebook and Layla was all “SPAIN INDEED.”

And, to be as prepared as I possibly can me, I’ve just suddenly had a brilliant idea of how to spend the next hour or so of my life. It makes complete sense, in order to become aware of the ins and outs of Barcelona, that I proceed to watch the Cheetah Girls movie, the one where they hit up Spain and sing and dance all around the city (thank you very much NETTTTFLIXXXX, holla).

CAUSE WE ARE SISTERS WE STAND TOGETHER

CAUSE WE ARE SISTERS WE STAND TOGETHER

And seriously, I am gonna mean it.

I am so excited though. 5 days in Barcelona, what a beautiful way to spend my break from school. Oh joy! And then, if you wanna really get into the details, I’m pretty pretty pretty positive I’ll be in Berlin almost immediately after that reuniting with some cool kids and cool cats, like Bernie and Luke and Professor Nik and Babz and all those Salzburg kiddos I met down in Österreich a few weeks ago.

LIFE IS KIND OF NICE, YOU GUYS.

I’ve got some cool Barcelona recommendations from cool people like my brother, Colin, my home girls Ashley and Maria, my singing-as-talking partner, Paul… all is well, all is lookin’ good.

So, until next time, friends, when I tell you ALL ABOUT my magical time at the beach, eating tapas, drinking copious amounts of sangria, and basically just being a badass who can up and decide to head over to Barcelona a week ahead of time.

TO THE  CURRENT AND VERY TEMPORARY NATURE OF MY LIFE!

TO THE CURRENT AND VERY TEMPORARY NATURE OF MY LIFE!

Prost!

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This Post is Basically Just About Food

So I concede, it’s been quite a while since I’ve last detailed the intricacies of my absolutely fascinating life on the internet for all (Mom) to see. Please excuse me, but like, really guys. I’ve been a little busy, you know, doing totally cool stuff and being a badass.

Just to clarify.

Well, a lot has happened since, what, November? Things like Christmas and my 24th birthday and the apocalypse I joined a gym. These are just a few examples.

All of December here was truly amazing, as you might expect. If you remember correctly, December is the time of CHRISTMAS here in the Vaterland. Weihnachten, that is. And Christmas markets. I cannot tell you how much I love the Weihnachtsmärkte. It’s probably my favorite thing about being in this country– for a month in what might otherwise be a dreary time, weather-wise, you can almost certainly be brought into a sort of fairy-tale like world of delicious food stuffs, lights, singing, overpriced handicrafts and, oh you thought I’d forgotten, Glühwein.

Glühwein

Ahh, Glühwein. That most sultry and cinnamony of winter-time beverages.

I do declare that from here on out, never a Christmas season shall pass that I do not sip on this most delectable of treats. As per the usual, I made sure to bring some along to my Christmas festivities at home, because yes, once again, I was most warmly welcomed back into Ohio for two beautiful weeks of family and friends and far too much alcohol.

It was great being home, as one might think. I have a tendency to forget that being around people you’ve known for years and years is pretty cool, and I like that my time spent away (so much time) has allowed me that perspective. Here’s to keeping that idea fresh and fancy forever (we’d hope).

Returning to Leipzig was bittersweet, of course. I’d come to really be used to a steadily stocked fridge and the cozy comfortableness of having absolutely nothing to do all day. Yet I was happy to get back here, see my beautiful roommates, hand out the few little things I’d brought back from my time in the crazy place that is the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (exotisch), and begin preparations for what would be the day that marked my 24th year of life.

For my birthday, I decided we’d cook fajitas.

Fajitas? You might ask. But Chelsea, really, fajitas? Didn’t you just return from America, the magical land that allowed you to eat Mexican food for six straight days in a row while you were home?

Yes, I’d answer. Yes, I did, but get ahold of yourselves. There is no such thing as too much Mexican food.

So! The effort began to bring the delight of fajitas to Germany. It’s not exactly an easy task, since what Germans lack in the Mexican food department they make up in, basically, just sausages. We toiled and shopped and spent a while at the grocery store, but eventually emerged with appropriate supplies. I made guacamole, we had some sort of strange taco-seasoning to add to the mix (in the hopes that it’d impart some of that flavor food around here sometimes seems to be missing), and a whole lot of peppers. Cause fajitas means peppers.

This is not a picture of the fajitas we made.

This is not a picture of the fajitas we made.

And lo– we did it! Fajitas were created. I managed to even find some black beans, cause I love black beans, though they were drenched in some strange chili sauce so I washed them off and they were actually pretty good. Gotta buy me some more of those, mental note. I was pleased, not only by the fajitas, but by the three different kinds of sangria I also purchased as a taste-test to go along with the meal (Spanish/Mexican/whatever, it worked).

Muy bien!

The week after my birthday, dear Eva, my roommate, celebrated hers. We threw a big ol’ party on that Thursday that we got sponsored (??? still confused) and therefore had like 6 cases of free beers and a bunch of free Bacardi to offer our guests. Pretty fly. Good times had by all, and the following day, I departed for a grand adventure to my most favorite of European locations…

If you've ever met me, you  know how stupid happy this sight would make me.

If you’ve ever met me, you know how stupid happy this sight would make me.

Salzburg! My homie Bernie just got there a few weeks ago for his last semester of college, so I traveled on down, aboard a bus, mind you, and spent the weekend in my European hometown. I love getting to continue visiting that place. I made so many of my best friends there.

To top it all off, we got to spend the day in Maria Alm, a little village surrounded by Alps (that were obscured entirely by some kinda wonderful snowstorm) just a few hours away from Salzburg, with my former German professors and their crazy cute adorable bilingual children. And we went to lunch with them at this wonderful little restaurant place named after a Farmer’s Cabinet (no time to explain, the dog’s on fire!) and I ate some Käsespätzle and my life was complete.

You guys, I almost couldn’t leave.

But then I did, because Leipzig, and I reminded myself that I love it here too, in different ways and for different reasons. I got back here at like 5 AM on last Tuesday morning and I was so happy to see that Hauptbahnhof, you guys– this place is fabulous.

Also, while in Salzburg, Bernie and I made the important discovery that my target audience for everything I write/do/say lately is really American people (or people who have a vast familiarity with Americanness) who speak/study German. So, if nothing I write/do/say comes off as funny to you, that’s not my fault. It’s all on you, for refusing to partake in the joy that is the German language.

See like it's your own fault if you don't get that.

See like it’s your own fault if you don’t get that. YOUR SCHULD. Sorry.

Since then, life’s been sailing along pretty smoothly still. Friday night I went with Kim and Vanessa to a party thrown by the university’s sport-department. The theme was Fasching, aka Karneval, aka German Halloween, and I dressed up as Little Red Riding Hood (or Rotkäppchen, if you wanna be authentic) in a cape I sewed myself, out of a 2 Euro red fleece blanket (bargain, eh Madre?), along with a little wicker basket I used to hold my purse.

That was, shall I say, preeeetty fun. Just affirming my belief that Leipzig belongs on the list right next to Salzburg of Chelsea’s Favorite Places on this Earth.

I also finished my graduate school applications! 9 schools, all submitted, almost late just in the nick of time. Just all send out positive thoughts that I don’t suck so much that I can’t even get into one of them. Oh god oh god, why did I even just put that out there.

Oh, and yeah, I joined a gym. Crazy stuff, but shut up. I’ve got a wedding to be in this summer, and I better be lookin’ damn good. No more Schnitzel hips for me, kids.

Dude I've been fighting you for like four years. GET OUT.

Dude I’ve been fighting you for like four years. GET OUT.

We’ll see. Cause really, sometimes that stuff is kind of delicious.

BABY STEPS.

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My Leben in Leipzig, Part 1

Greetings, meine Lieben!

I write to you today from LEIPZIG, my brand new German home. Surprise, surprise, we’re all surprised, but we all think it’s possibly the coolest thing to ever happen, so hurrah for me.

My update is a bit delayed, I got here on Monday, but until today, the wifi at my apartment has been out, on the fritz, what have you. Then, magically, just a few hours ago, I discovered it was BACK, which is great news because my new lovely wonderful roommates are unfortunately out of town for the weekend…

Hello, Netflix!

BAE <3

BAE ❤

It’s cool, though. This will, to be fair, give me a bit of time to explore this fantastic city and get lost get to know the place all on my very own! I sure hope so, at least.

Yesterday was an interesting day. First of all, I’m at two schools this year. A Grundschule (1-4th grades) and an Oberschule (5-12th grades) that caters to sports. Interesting placement for me, you might be thinking, if you know me, or have ever heard anything about me, but I’m up for it! Maybe it’ll inspire me to buy those workout clothes, after all.

But yeah, anyway. Yesterday, I went to the Grundschule for the first time. Unfortunately, I’ve been suffering from jet lag a bit more than I usually do and, deswegen, I was late getting up. I didn’t have time to shower before running out the door with a nectarine in purse and no real idea of where I was going, aside from the name of the tram stop near the school. But hey I made it.

My Betreuungslehrerin at the Grundschule is, let’s say, delightful. The school is adorable, the Schulleiterin was super friendly, too, and everybody there was just like… nice. Like super nice. It was a really happy day.

Maybe I'll get to have my own crayons. You know, standard ETA supplies.

Maybe I’ll get to have my own crayons. You know, standard ETA supplies.

BUT THEN, the chaos came. My dear pal, Bernie, who spent last semester in Leipzig himself, took it upon his wonderful being to organize a bike for me before he left. I arranged to pick up said bike from his old apartment on Thursday, and, lucky me, I’d even been there before when I visited him in March. So, smart Chelsea, I figured I knew where I was going. And I did!

For a while.

After successfully picking the bike up, I began the process of getting the bike home. Now, Bernie’s old apartment was located, I believe, in the part of the city known as Lindenau. My apartment, however, is not located there. It is, actually, located at least 25 minutes away from Lindenau when you’re riding the convenient (and yet sometimes terrifying) Straßenbahns.

Seeing as how I wasn’t entirely sure where I was going, I decided to walk the bike home rather than ride it. This idea, I thought, was logical, and might only take about an hour at most. I wasn’t too worried about it, since I hadn’t showered that morning anyway, and, what’s an hour’s walk, really?

GUESS WHAT. I was mistaken about everything.

May as well just have gone down this street.

May as well just have gone down this street.

I got lost A LOT. I used up all the data on my phone because of our lack-of-internet at home, so Google Maps was super slow and little help. At one point, I walked past this park and continued my journey for 25 minutes or so only to SUDDENLY REALIZE that I was walking past the exact same park on the exact same side of the street somehow. So that was super fun. And then I almost got hit by a Straßenbahn. It was ringing its little bells at me all angry and everything, and I still managed to almost let it kill me. Whaddayaknow, eh?

Finally, though, FINALLY, looking a hot mess and having to walk directly through the center of the city, I found my way back to my happy, not sweaty apartment. Two hours after beginning my trek. And mind you, it was very hot outside. The weather here’s been pretty mild this week, but it was really warm that afternoon, I swear.

Anyway, that’s been the only rough patch in my life thus far. So, I’d say I’m doing a-okay.

Then today! I went to the Sportoberschule. It was also great! I met the Schulleiterin there, got a little tour from my other Betreuungslehrerin (who is also amazing, and bought me a flower on Wednesday–so sweet!), and met some of the other teachers.

So, yeah. My outlook is positive.

And my Friday-night plans are firmly in place!

And my Friday-night plans are firmly in place!

I can tell this will be a lovely experience, a lovely year, in a lovely city, with lovely roommates in a lovely apartment.

And on this LOVELY note, I leave you, dears. I’ve got a super hot Netflix date and some 2-Euro Austrian wine calling out my name…

Tschüssi!

[Side note: I just went and checked my website statistics, and it appears that my blog has been found twice thanks to searching “lederhosen for little boys.” So. Progress?]

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All the World’s a Fish Mouth

Guten Tag, meine Damen und Herren! März is upon us, and I have successfully made it back in one piece from my Skiurlaub! I thoroughly enjoyed my one-week in Tulfes, Austria with the lovely 8th grade from my Gymnasium and 7 other teachers. We skied, we ate, we played dice games, I lost, we moved on. It really was quite magical, and the fact that Tulfes is a little town situated on a mountain in the Alps, well, that only helped.

View from my window. Not bragging or anything.

View from my window. Not bragging or anything.

So, after arriving home yesterday morning, I proceeded to not actually relax and unwind from six successive days of skiing, but to have a full-on day, packed to the brim with activities and friends and celebration.

It all began with Alice coming over to my humble abode, looking at picture of mountains with me, and deciding we would head out to Bad Zwischenahn with her roommate, Anka, and her brother, who was borrowing the family convertible so we could prove to the German people of the world just how cool we really are. We had a lovely time exploring, there’s a nice lake over there with sailboats and everything, and I also sat in a giant fish mouth.

So, yeah.

Later! I went to a basketball game with my Betreuungslehrerin, Kristin, and some of her friends. The team in Oldenburg is called the EWE Baskets (it appears that every second basketball team in Germany is called the “Baskets” – original, I know) and they were playing the team from Berlin. They won, of course, what else could they do with a gal like me in attendance? And fun was had by all.

Check it.

Check it.

I really am having a hard time believing it’s March. What kind of world do we live in where I only have like four more months left living in Germany? A sick world, that’s what. I’m working on applying for a second year now, so let’s all just keep our fingers crossed, shall we?

I was pretty productive yesterday, too, and got a lot of housekeeping-type-shit done. Bought my plane ticket to Dublin, finally, and paid my Uni Bremen Sommersemester fees, also finally, so I can get the second installment of my SemesterTicket for April-July. I also watched the latest episode of Pretty Little Liars a not-trashy-at-all television program, so, yeah, I’d say it was a pretty good day.

Some things I’ve noticed are that the weather is exponentially better than it was two weeks ago, I don’t have a lot of money to spare, and I need to travel more.

So, on the list of places to visit for the next few months…

  • Berlin, for certain, Fulbright conference in a few weeks!
  • Dublin, happening for sure, April
  • London, with the parents, possibly, in April
  • Paris, for sure, with Ashley, in May (just gotta figure out how to get there…)
  • Hannover, day trip with Alice, sometime hopefully
  • Leipzig, to visit my FAVORITE Bernie, who just got to Germany a few days ago!!
  • Groningen, in the Netherlands, which is just a short distance from here, so maybe a day trip in the future
  • Amsterdam, possibly, cause that’d also be awesome
  • Osnabrück, because it’s there, and I haven’t been yet, and why the hell not?
  • Copenhagen, Denmark, because I WANT TO, DAMN IT

Basically I’m gonna make every effort to enjoy this lovely place, this lovely weather, and the meager earnings of a Fremdsprachenassistentin. PLEASE FRIENDS, JOIN ME ON THIS QUEST. Who wants to accompany me on any of these journeys? 🙂 Legitimate question. Answer me.

Please be my friend.

Please, answer me.

Ahh, it’s good to be back in Oldenburg. I’ve come to really love this place, and this apartment, and these people, and this life here.

In just a few short months, I’ll be forced by security into an airplane in Berlin and told to head back to the USA (I’m hoping to avoid that, but I might get a little clingy).I’ve got precious little time left! It hurts to think about! Let’s not squander it away, okay? As far as morals of the story go–

WHEN ASKED, RIDE IN A CONVERTIBLE TO BAD ZWISCHENAHN – you will not be disappointed.

Get into a fish every now and then, yeah?

But you will have to get inside the fish.

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