Friday, September 9, 2011

Big Long Update

we drove about an hour and 20 minutes to Erding to go to the disneyland of waterparks! I was so impressed. They had a ton of huge waterslides (including the longest one in Europe) and a kind of oasis with a bar in the water and really good food. I had vegetable and cheese Spätzle and it was amazing. The weather wasn't too great and therefore the place was really, really crowded. We only had 4 hours there, but I definitely could have stayed longer cuz it was so cool. We went on this one slide where there's two slides next to each other and you race the other person down. I hit both of my elbows on the sides of the slide as I started down the slide. That hurt. We drove back and Michi went to Dany's. I stayed at the house and hung out with Cezanne and talked to Luke and Andy on facebook.

Michi and I were gonna bake cinnamon rolls but out of no where he had to go see Dany because she was having an emotional issue. But when he came back we went outside to play with Cezanne and Sandra (Michi's mom) and I had a beer. There were a lot of bugs outside that day and I got bit several times on my neck. Then we got ready to go to Munich to go to a club called Nox for hardstyle (at type of hard techno music). There were very few people there, but Michi told me it would be that way. It was fun tho. We went with Michi's coworker, Bela. And when we went outside for a breather, I ran into couple of australians who i think were drunk and looking for their next club/bar. They tried to get into Nox but after a few minutes of conversing with the bouncer, they weren't allowed in because they told me he said they were too drunk. Earlier I had a big beer and for the rest of the night my stomach felt a little weird. I think drinking a large amount of alcoholic liquid and then moving around a lot isn't exactly a combination for well-being.

Can't exactly remember when we went to sleep the night before, but we woke up around 2 pm. Sandra made this awesome apple strudel thing which we ate some of before going to the store because I needed shampoo and toothpaste and stuff. Later that evening we went to an all-you-can-eat joint called the Nudelbar in Augsburg with Dany and Andy. It wasn't a buffet but rather a menu with numbered items and you just said what number you wanted and they bring it to you each time. Each item is pretty small, and I was scared that after we ordered 1, that's all everyone would eat except me, and I didn't want to look like a fatass and keep ordering more stuff when everyone else wasn't. But that wasn't the case. Andy ordered 4 different things. When I tried ordering something myself, the waitress thought I said 210 when I said 215 or something like that. So they brought the mistake before what I actually wanted and it turned out I liked the mistake better than the one I originally wanted. Then Andy and I went to Rockfabrik while Michi went to Dany's. I brought my stuff beforehand and stayed the night at Andy's after we went to Rofa.

Michi picked me up in the afternoon from Andy's house and Michi's sister Silvia and her boyfriend came over. Michi and I went on a lovely walk with his parents, Silvia and her boyfriend, their little dog, and Cezanne in the fields behind their house. When we came back we had ice cream and more apple cake that Sandra made a few days earlier and chatted. In the evening Michi and I went to the bowling alley with Dany, Andy, Bela and his girlfriend. Then Michi drove me back to his house and went to Dany's.

I called Gloria, my homestay mom from 2005 and had a nice conversation. She told me to give her a call in the next week when I knew more of my plans so we could arrange a visit. We then figured out the ingredients we would need to make cinnamon rolls and went to the grocery store. We came home and made the rolls which turned out pretty well considering it was my first time baking with the metric system. Michi's parents liked the rolls, but thought they were really sweet, which is very true. But they went pretty quickly haha Then we went to free pool night again with everyone from bowling the night before. I learned a new german phrase Bela made up: Hammergeilscheisse :D And i learned to play snooker, although I don't really like it because you constantly have to remember which color ball you need to hit: either red or colored, and I easily forget.

This day was Neuschwanstein day! We woke up a lot earlier than usual and stopped in Landsberg at a grocery store so we could pick up a few snack things. The weather was so gorgeous and it was warm until about right before we left. Plus the drive out there was beautiful as well. We decided to do both castles (until recently I thought there was only Neuschwanstein) but I thought I should see both. So we saw Schloss Hohenschwangau first. We first bought the tickets down the road and made the walk to the castle. By the time we got to the gate, we had about 45 minutes before our tour, so we just hung around. Fortunately for me we took the tour in english but Michi said he could understand pretty much everything. After that tour we made the long walk to Neuschwanstein. First we thought we'd take the bus up to the castle, and now I wish we would have, but we read that it was only a 15 minute walk. It felt longer than that, and it was quite uphill. Not to mention that there was horse poop all over the road with tons of flies (which i despise) and Michi would get embarrassed everytime we would be walking and i would make a B-line to the other side of the road, away from the mass swarm of flies around a huge pile of poop. I told Michi that he could get friendly with the poop but I'm getting as far away as possible. We finally got to the castle and there were (unsurprisingly) many tourists but it wasn't as bad as I could imagine it being on a weekend or during summer (because this day was the first day of school). There was a man up there in lederhosen which I thought pretty awesome. We waited for 30-45 minutes for our tour, and I bought a small book of pictures from inside Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau because photos inside weren't allowed due to copyright. The castle was pretty sweet, but the tour was only 30 minutes, and I think they could show you so much more of the castle if they wanted to. Michi wasn't too impressed with it and liked Hohenschwangau much more. Then we made the walk back down the hill/mountain, again avoiding horse poop.

This day was pretty chill. I went with Michi to his work and met his co-workers again and they had a little meeting to discuss when they would start having their once-a-week english discussion to practice english. They made their planning decisions and then they asked me to speak about myself. It was pretty fun, but I tried my hardest not to speak too fast or use weird/uncommon vocabulary. I think I was pretty well understood for the most part. After the meeting, I stayed at the office waiting for Andy to finish work while Michi went to Dany's. Then Andy and I went to the grocery store to get ingredients to make chili sin carne from scratch. It was delicious and very healthy. Practically nothing but veggies, tomato juice/base, and a couscous-type wheat product (can't remember the name). We ended up making an entire huge pot full. When we were done Michi came to get me.

We went to Sealife, an aquarium in Munich. There was a card you got when you entered that was a quiz with answers you scratch off, because inside there was plaques with questions. For some reason I didn't see them all as we walked through, but I got most of the ones I did see wrong. After sealife, we walked around the Oplympia Park and saw a guy on a nearby lake wakeboarding, although there was no boat. Instead he was being pulled by a kind of zipline. Definitely something I wanna do next time I'm in Munich and it's warm. We almost went up the giant "Fernsehturm" (TV tower) for a great view of Munich, but it cost something ridiculous like 4 euros. So we just looked at the gift shop. Then we went to the BMW showroom that was nearby. I was in heaven. We saw some people getting in the cars and taking pics, and I wanted to have one taken in a yellow convertible. Michi asked an associate and they said they had to get the keys to open it because at the moment no one was watching it. I had to do it quickly because they didn't really want everyone to see me in it and then have them all want a picture in it. I felt special :) Now if I only could have discreetly driven it away... They even had floor cleaning robots. It was crazy. You can rent a BMW at 40 euros an hour lol. I just want to rent one for a little while so I can drive it on the autobahn at 200+ mph. But I don't nearly trust my driving skills for that. Then we hit a little bit of a traffic jam (a "stau" as you commonly see displayed on signs in Munich during rush hour). On the way home we went through Fürstenfeldbruck, and Michi showed where he used to live and grew up, and we stopped to buy some pizzas for dinner. When we got back home we chilled out and watched "Remember Me".

In the afternoon Michi and I went out again to practice snakeboarding. I really feel like I could do it if I had a decent amount of practice. I never even fell on my butt!! (Although I almost did a few times, and I did fall on my palms once, but I didn't hurt myself). Then we picked up Andy and Dany and went to the mall in Augsburg because Michi and Dany needed to get a birthday present for Dany's dad. We went back home and got ready to go to Rockfabrik. This night was pretty sick because it was hosted by Captain Morgan (got a couple free Captain and Cokes). Once I had to sing something to get one, and then the next one I had to talk in a low man-voice, as guys had to speak in a high voice. The bartender guy asked me what I wanted and I had to say "Captain Coke" nearly like a sailor lol. It was hilarious. Not to mention that it was also buy 1 drink, get 2. Michi was in a corner with Dany somewhere most of the time so I didn't get to hang out with him there as much as I wanted, and at one point Andy had to meet with a girl (and ended up having to drive her home, so I didn't see him for a while) so I thought what the hell, and ended up drinking something like 4 jager shots, and 2 beers, in addition to the captain cokes i got for free. It helped pass the time while Andy was away... When we were on the dancefloor, at one point I got a face-full of someone's dreads, which was pretty gross, but being drunk helped me deal with it. Then Captain Morgan came on the stage and they were doing a limbo game to get a free captain morgan hat. I went up there but didn't do the limbo, but Andy did. One of the captain morgan guys gave me an awesome flashlight shaped like a captain morgan bottle, and on the dancefloor we ended up taking a picture with Captain Morgan and he gave me a dog tag with a key on it. I guess it was for some treasure chest but I think it was gone before we realized the key was for it. Then Captain Morgan threw out the rest of the hats into the crowd and I caught one. When we left, I went with Michi and had to say goodbye to Andy. I may or may not get to see him again before I leave, which is sad because we had a lot of fun together and he was a good source of support for me.

We got home around 5 am from Rofa and crashed. The next day I said goodbye to Michi's parents and gave them the cheese board made from oregon red alder. Sandra cried a little. Earlier she said she was sad because I became kind of like another child to her :) But she said we'll see each other on skype. Then Michi brought me to the other Andy's house and we said goodbye for now. I'm hoping to see him again before I leave. Andy was at handball so just Heidi was home. She's so adorable, and I was surprised at how much I can understand her. Either that or my German has somehow magically improved since last year. But she's also used to speaking to people who don't speak German well. So we went out to do some grocery shopping and we stopped by a couple of dirndl stores and I tried a few on. There was this black and pink one I absolutely fell in love with at a clothing store we went to, but it was 130 euros (not including with blouse that goes underneath... generally another 25-30 euros) and Heidi and Andy said that because it's a clothes chain that doesn't specialize in dirndls, the quality isn't as good. But I didn't buy one because Andy wasn't with us and I promised him he could take me dirndl shopping. Later on we went to the sports center where Andy had finished training/hand ball game. We had dinner with his teammates in the sports center restaurant and I had schnitzel and spätzle (which i absolutely adore), and a weissbier. When we left I asked the waitress lady if I could have my schnitzel to go, and she kinda scoffed, but gave it to me wrapped in tin foil. I guess asking for food to go in Germany is as bad as in France. When we left we went to Andy's friends apartment and had a little get-together and played a soccer game on xbox. Then we took a taxi back to Andy's.

In the morning we had Weißwurstfrühstück, which is white sausage (I have no idea why it's white, and that scares me a little) with pretzels and white beer (typically), but they had no beer. Then Andy's friend picked us up to take us back into Landsberg to get the car. Then we drove to Kempten, where Andy studies. When we got to Andy's little flat, we hung around a little while then we went to a handball game a little bit outside Kempten. In the past, Andy had played for both teams so he wasn't really cheering for one or the other. Then we went back home and had pizza and I hung out while he went to meet a friend to give him some stuff.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Zoo in Munich!

Tuesday we went to the zoo in Munich. It was a perfect day to go too. We took the autobahn to get there too and that's always interesting. I think at one point we were driving 111 miles an hour. Spent the day at the zoo and hit a bad traffic jam leaving Munich on our way back to Michi's. Then a little later on Michi went to Dany's and I hung out.

Today we woke up around noon and the weather wasn't great so great and we thought about going rock wall climbing but decided against it. Instead we had a kinda lazy day and played video games. Then I finally showered and got ready to go to Rockfabrik, a rock club in Augsburg, with Andy while Michi went to see Dany. It was gothic night so we danced with the goths, which was kinda funny. And I tried a special beer that's only made in Augsburg by "goblins". I think we'll go there on a normal night next friday.

Sunday, September 4, 2011


Friday morning I thought waking up 3 hours before my train departure would be enough time. I was so wrong. I didn't get myself organized nearly soon enough and we left Sev's place at about 12:10 when my train was supposed to leave at 12:26. And we had traffic on the way to the train station. Needless to say I was freaking out. Sev helped me run my suitcases to the elevator and said goodbye. Thank god that my train was 10 minutes late. It really ended up being about 20 I think. I wanted to see a friend at the train station and she was trying to call me but at this time my french phone decided to quit working and I couldn't answer her calls or read her texts. And I couldn't find her once I was on the platform. I felt really bad about that because she made the effort to come say hi/bye to me. The train ride to Strasbourg was pretty pleasant and I was surprised that we didn't even go through Paris. In Strasbourg I could hear french, german, and english. I wish I could have been able to see more of the city. Fortunately my second train left from the same platform that my first train arrived at. Shortly after the train left the station I got my meal of some kind of sliced beef, potato salad, a shrimp cocktail, and beer. I still can't even believe paying $40 more for my train ticket from Poitiers to Augsburg got me 1st class all the way, absolutely no hassle in Paris, and a meal. Michi picked me up and we went to McDonald's. When we got to his house, I met his parents and his german sheppard, Cezanne. I was too excited to give Michi his late birthday/thank you presents. One present of which I've waited 4 years to give him.

Saturday: We went to Augsburg and first picked up Dany. We walked through the mall and went into a dindl store because Michi needed shoes for his lederhosen. I took a look at the dirndls and most all of them would have been 100 euros or more with all the pieces you need. Then we walked around the streets some more and went to a cafe where I drank a Becks. We went to the city hall, a nearby church, and the tower of the church where we had a great view of Augsburg. Later that night we went to a mini-oktoberfest and walked around and sat in a beer tent. Then we went to a night club which was super great. 11 euros entry with 5 drink tickets (most drinks being 1 ticket).

Sunday: My eating habits in Germany are terrible. Actually it's fantastic... but I feel like I eat the whole farm everytime. Eggs, meat, milk, cheese... Michi had to take Dany's ID back to her from the night before, so I stayed at the house and got ready for the day while he was away. When he got back we went out to ride his snakeboard and I got a little lesson. I still suck at it but I think we'll try again in the next few days. Then we had dinner of amazing Spaetzel that Sandra (Michi's mom) made. I gave them my oregon picture book and showed them some of my videos from college on youtube. I also played their piano some and there was a ginormous storm outside. Sandra is hilarious. She kept offering me more beer :D and said "you could tell your parents we made you drunk" hahaa Then we watched a couple movies before bedtime.

Monday: Today we went to Michi's work because he needed to talk with some colleague and I got to meet them. Then we came back home and had lunch of leftover Spaetzel and talked with Sandra. Then we had a great drum lesson :) Around 7:15 we left to pick up Dany and Andy and we went to a pool hall where we had a beer and played a lot of pool games, because it's free on Mondays. Then Andy and I split a pizza. Andy and I won most of the games against Michi and Dany.