Sunday, August 7, 2011


    I believe first off that I have neglected to mention two things. They are #1. Mosquitoes & #2 Humidity. I have lost count of the number of bug bites I have gotten here but it is numerous and my slapping proficiency has doubled in the last four days.
My feet look like I have the chicken pox.  Ugh.

   Humidity and me don't exactly get along very well, my hair is mane like, I'm always sticky and the bug bites don't make the situation much better. Brandenburg doesn't normally get as much rain as it has this year so the river is high and the moisture level with it.
   This morning I was again awake before 7, I don't like this habit I have picked up – I need more sleep before school starts. I enjoyed a very awkward breakfast (one of the boys from last night was drinking coffee with Anna and I, when Anna left to go talk to Clara there was no talking). I decided against partaking in the breakfast rituals of the partiers because I knew they wouldn't speak English and I would just sit in awkward silence listening to them talk (which I suppose might improve my English). Instead I went up stairs and took a wee nap in the hopes of regaining some functionality. After my nap I wandered back downstairs to find that Josi was back, she told me about Brandenburg Bruckenschwimmen, which literally translates to Brandenburg Bridge Swim. [for pictures here is a link: for a short article in German:] People of the town swim from one bridge to another and back again (approx. 800 meters), the person who comes in first is given a trophy (this year there were 135 participants). Josi told asked me if I would like to go watch with her, I immediately said yes and went and ate some cereal for lunch. On the bike ride to the bridge she told me that Willy was going to be participating, as it is open to anyone young and old alike brave the chilly water. After we saw them start swimming we went for ice cream (along with another girl whose name I can't pronounce yet). I felt like I was in a movie that lacked English subtitles. We arrived back at the Havel just in time to see the first person make it back, the second place was a woman (Woot! Woot!). A little while later Willy made it in so we decided to cross the bridge and talk to him. It was funny really – we saw him and talked to him, then we talked to his father (or rather they talked and I listened & nodded). Then we said hello to Josi's sister and cousin.
    Eventually we found Willy again and sat down so he could eat the food he was given. I ended up sitting next to him which was funny because he does not like to speak English because he doesn't think he can. It was fun though, listening to them speak and I learned Lesson #6: German boys have ridiculously long eyelashes – they're so long it should be criminal. Willy got up to see if they had the listing of where people placed but they didn't, however he came back with this very tasty coconut cake stuff. I know this because he offered all of us a bite and so lesson #8 struck home, Lesson #7: Germans share drinks, food and silverware – no germaphobes here. I noticed this at the party but didn't know if it was an everyday occurrence. A small water fight occurred, apparently I am friend enough to be splashed, I took that as a very good thing. We sat there for awhile, then Willy offered us all gum. I said danke shön, he was really surprised and happy (and told Josi that he didn't think I knew any German, which I thought was funny since I was sure I had said thank you around him before). Then he asked me in English (after Josi insisted that he ask) if I knew my way home. I said not really then he asked if he could come with Josi and show me, which I thought was really cute & sweet. We were getting ready to go and Willy decided to put on another shirt, when he put his hat where we were sitting I picked it up and put it on causing them all to laugh. Then we went to our bikes, once there Josi and I discussed the Germans' fondness for hugging people goodbye. It is really common among close friends (though not just acquaintances), Josi gave me 2 weeks before I had lots of friends hugging me goodbye.
    Then we biked home, going by our school. I will be in the same grade as Josi and Willy, which is 11th (they are only 16, which makes me feel really old). Willy was really funny biking on the way home, he would get really close and shake his handlebars like he wasn't in control, I think he didn't know I was such a biking pro. When we got home the rest of the partiers were leaving, which was nice to know that there was going to be peace and quite. Before Josi left she gave me a hug which made me do an internal happy dance and Willy shook my hand (because they always have to do something when they say good bye – at the party last night when people left they shook my hand).
    During dinner my councilor stopped by and we had a nice discussion. She also mentioned some of the classes that I could take so I could start thinking about what I wanted to sign up for. Anna and I went to drop off a tent to Jakob (pronounce the J as a Y) at hockey camp because he didn't have one and he wanted to sleep there with his friends. Also at the swimming I saw the mayor again, not bad 2 out of 4 days of being here. Here is a link to the webcam of the main square


  1. sorry about the bugs, your foot looks awful.
    Hope the rest of your body doesn't look like that.
    I am sending the flag and rosetta stone today. Let me know if you need anything else.

  2. The people you are meeting sound so interesting and delightful!