As my work permit application makes its long journey through the German bureaucracy, I’ve been working on some projects to keep myself busy and productive.
Learning German. PC have been trying to study on our own at home. With German podcasts, phrasebooks, flashcards and the odd Disney channel show dubbed in Deutsch. Additionally, PC’s club has arranged for the non-German speaking players (and me) to do a weekly German lesson. The first lesson occurred on Tuesday. Five attended: a Slovak, an Australian, a Frenchman, an American and a Brazilian. The French and Slovakian guys are already more advanced in their Deutsch knowledge. In my neurotic brain, I immediately began having feelings of anxiety knowing that I could never be the best in class, and that I might possibly be the worst. Yes, yes, I know, I’ve chilled out since then. During the first lesson, we were learning how to state activities we are good at. Our teacher threw out the first example, “I play volleyball very well”. Then he turned to me and said, “you might say, I cook very well”. He followed this up by looking at the black, Brazilian and saying, “And you might say, I dance very well”. Holding in my laughter was quite difficult at that point. I’m sure that this sweet, older German man meant no disrespect using such cute stereotypes, but it truly tickled me.
Buying a new couch is out of the question. Buying a slipcover for this couch is expensive, and difficult given it’s non-standard shape. Generally, all household expenditures made whilst in Germany are simply money down the drain given the fact that neither myself nor PC hail from this continent. Therefore, cheap homewares are a must for us. Unfortunately, there is a distinct lack of Target and HomeGoods style stores. Although, I have discovered that a TKMaxx (yes that’s TK not TJ-it’s the Euro version) allegedly exists some forty minutes from Unterhaching. When/if we get a car, I’ll soon be making a trip. But to the point, my cheapo fix for the couch was simply some chocolate brown sheets and pins. It’ll do. I’m hoping to score some nicer accent pillows soon.
In other news, PC’s team dropped a tough one to Berlin the other night, but they are looking forward to a rigorous schedule with 2 games a week for the next several weeks including some champions league action. In fact, PC will be in Russia for a few days to play Kazan right around Thanksgiving. Seeing the potential for a lonely, boring and depressing Thanksgiving day I’ve made some exciting arrangements. I’ll be traveling to Greece to spend the holiday with the Jaimie-Rose and Jonathan Winder who have graciously allowed me to invade their home. They are also living the professional volleyball, ping-ponging around the world life. I’m really looking forward to seeing some familiar faces, and celebrating a holiday that nobody else on the continent cares about. So, if you have any go-to, never fail Thanksgiving recipes please send them my way!
Now here’s some other stuff that has made me smile in the past few days
A trip to McDonald’s for McFlurries. Ich liebe es. You only got to McDonald’s for two meals: breakfast and dessert. Dessert did not disappoint. Additionally, McDonald’s outside of the US is a fairly classy establishment, so the atmosphere was quite enjoyable. Foreigners must be quite repulsed if they go to an American mickey d’s.