Monday, August 31, 2009

It's been (pause) One Week

This is gonna be a long one folks. hang on!
One week. I only have 15.5 of those, and already, one has passed me by. I feel like I filled it with lots of fun stuff, and I have learned a lot (already, i know!), and there is so much more. here are random impressions and thoughts I've had all week.
1. I live in fairy-tale land. Literally. The forest is something straight out of a disney movie. You know how the wizened old owl sits in a knot in a tree? yeah, i thought those were pretend. wrong, they're real. COOL!
2. Where i live is called the Konigstuhl. In the english guidebooks they call it "fairytale paradise", and the path up from the schloss to my place is called the stairway to heaven. Seriously, i have a great life.
3. the forest is a lot like Oregon, but cleaner, and a little redder. it's prettier - i might be romanticizing, but it really is lovely. thick vines grow on the trees, not quite choking them but creeping up the trunks ever so maliciously. sorry, i have this love/hate relationship with ivy.
4. people drive crazy here. Dad would be in heaven. they actually do drive on the correct side of the road! except for buses; they drive wherever they want, and usually at whatever speed suits their desires. it's never dull coming down the mountain.
5. i am ridiculously happy to figure things out on my own. for instance, i was told to go grocery shopping at this one store. it's a little pricy. so, i found one that was cheaper, bigger, better stalked, and had friendlier staff. all. by. myself. i was proud.
6. it was more overwhelming than i thought; that being said, i didn't think it would be at all overwhelming. SO, it's not really that bad, just a little confusing sometimes. THANKFULLY, the people here are super-nice, and i have never felt scared or lost or anxious or anything like that.
7. my ward is super-duper awesome possum! i have already been adopted by an older couple that wants me to marry their son (who just graduated from west point). I'm not complaining. :)
8. the YSAs in my ward are so nice and welcoming. I was worried that things would be awkward, clique-ish, or dull. nope, nope, nope! The YSAs are fun, happy, silly, adventurous, intelligent, and kind. and so many more things - i have made new friends already, and i am so excited to get to know them better.
9. Today was my first day at a professional conference. Not to scare you all, but recently i have wondered if astronomy is my true calling in life... should i be a physicist? a cook? something else? is grad school even for me? after today, i know. It is astronomy. it is grad school. nothing interests me like space does; nothing makes my every sense come alive like astronomy.
10. This morning i had a moment. You know those moments where everything is just so perfect, and you know life is right where it's supposed to be? yeah, it was one of those, and it was one of the best ones of my life. i was coming down the konigstuhl on the bus, and right as we turned a corner, dave struck my favorite chord of my favorite song, bright morning sunlight (my favorite light - yes, i have favorite lights) filled the bus, and i had a sweeping view of the Neckar valley with apple orchards on the hillside. beautiful, wonderful, amazing life.
11. say what you will about catholics, but they sure know how to build a cathedral. i walked into the one just off the main square, and my breath was literally taken away! stunning, beautiful, amazing. words are trite. if it's like this in heidelberg, i don't know how i'll stand italy! plus, it was in the renaissance style (maybe tipping into the baroque).... i'm going to be floored when i hit real baroque and roccoco (oh, heaven help me, roccoco....).
12. I need to figure out this stupid stuff with my bus pass. it's driving me nuts.
13. did i mention that i'm amazingly blessed? cause i am. so so so so so blessed. so blessed.
14. sister missionaries are so nice. i love them oodles. elders are so kind. they deserve chocolate.
15. I'm absolutely exhausted. happily so.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Heidelberg Home

After a long and uneventful flight, i made it to heidelberg, and have settled in nicely. Tomorrow, i head down into town to do more exlporing. maybe i'll make it across the river this time and see the castle!!
random thoughts: HD is BEAUTIFUL. it really is your quintessential german town - dormer windows, curly facades, colorful buildings etc; one word - chocolate!! ; the milk here is DIVINE, i love it so so so much; running in the forest is the best way to run; too many people smoke; missionaries are wonderful people who are very helpful to a girl who doesn't know what she's doing; teaching myself german on the fly is hilarious; jet lag sucks; I'M SO EXCITED TO BE HERE!!!!!!!
below are pictures from my cute little place. i thought i would at least have to share the kitchen with someone... turns out i don't! my apartment is so cool.

I love the orange chairs in my kitchen... they give it such a lively touch. Also, the plant on the far left is the one i named Shana. :)
More kitchen. I wonder if MPIA thought I'd be entertaining... I have enough dishes for a 4 course meal for 8 people!
My living/sleeping area. Notice that the desk is already messy. oh my....

here is a video of the place, in case you miss my voice, or the pictures were not enough. Isn't it adorable??

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Do you feel alive? (imagine, imagine)

This is my "hey! I'm going on a freakishly long flight to GERMANY, and I should have a good playlist" list. I'm so excited people.
Not surprisingly, DMB won for number of songs, but country was the genre of choice. So typical...
Also, I'm taking suggestions, so anything you recommend is appreciated.
See you in December!

Love Like Rockets
-Angels and Airwaves
The Adventure -Angels and Airwaves
Great Big World -Ron Pope
Motorcycle Drive By -Third Eye Blind
Say Goodbye -Dave Matthews Band
One Week -Barenaked Ladies
Ticket To Ride -Beatles
I've Just Seen a Face -Beatles
We Didn't Start the Fire -Billy Joel
Some Mistakes -Brad Paisley
It Did -Brad Paisley
All Or Nothing -Cher
Viva la Vida -Coldplay
Accidentally In Love -Counting Crows
Two Step -Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds
Shake Me Like A Monkey -Dave Matthews Band
Why I Am -Dave Matthews Band
You & Me -Dave Matthews Band
Grey Street -Dave Matthews Band
Granny -Dave Matthews Band
Lie in Our Graves -Dave Matthews Band
Go the Distance -Disney Hits
Hotel California -Eagles
Run and Tell That -Elijah Kelly
Pilgrim -Enya
Beggarman -Gaelic Storm
Over My Head -The Fray
Courtin' in the Kitchen -Gaelic Storm
Gumption -The Holiday
The Star Shines -Ilan Eshkeri
Stupid Boy -Keith Urban
Orange Colored Sky -Natalie Cole
Unwritten -Natasha Bedingfield
Son Of Man -Phil Collins
Here -Rascal Flatts
No Day But Today -Rent
Change -Taylor Swift
Best Day Ever -SpongeBob Squarepants
Smooth -Santana & Rob Thomas
Smoothie Song -Nickel Creek
Send Me On My Way -Rusted Root

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

insert wry grin

It's really happening.
5 days, 21 hours, 10 minutes.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The wise ones

Oh teeth of wisdom
you finicky things!
Can't you see that my
top jaw has room for only one of you
and the bottom, room for a half?

"No!" you cry, and push
your way mercilessly into my mouth.

And YOU, #17.
How dare you rest on
my trigeminal nerve?!?!
Potentially causing
numbness for life.
Shame on you.

But I [almost] got the best of you.
You won't make me get braces.
POOF! you're all gone.

And I am drugged
Like a hippy.
At Woodstock.

Why did everyone tell me
that these drugs were good?
They make me nauseous.
And dizzy. oooo the dizziness....

Don't they know I have
A thesis to write?
They don't care.

This is the kind of poetry I come up with at 2AM. When I'm high on whatever drug they gave me, and yet still in pain... I should be an apprentice to Shel Silverstein.
At least I have pudding and applesauce. That makes the world better.