Sunday, October 9

Minor crisis...

Ummm... my computer won't work :( I don`t know whats wrong, when i turn it on it sounds like its starting up and the Compaq screen comes up, and then it blinks and shuts off. Everyone told me that I didn`t need to use a transformer because its built into the laptop... so it shouldn't be that. I wasn't using a surge protector though, because I didn't have one yet, in fact i was out shopping and I bought one and then I got back and it didn't work. Boo. I found the number of a repair shop here, so I guess i'll have to call and bring it in.... I hope its not too expensive. So I'm back in an internet cafe. sigh.

Anyway... my week of visitors... Grant and I picked up Caroline on Wednesday and then we all went out for some bavarian food. Grant didn't seem too impressed, though I don't blame him. Grant left sometime Thursday morning while I was at school and Caroline did some sight seeing on her own. School was fun, I showed my discussion group my high school yearbook. They all said "it's just like the movies!" Which Wayzata high school kind of is I suppose. I feel almost guilty showing them my high school. It so rediculously huge and wealthy, its not exactly representative of all american schools, but then I dont know what school would be. It's hard to explain to German students that our schools are funded based on property taxes so there are huge gaps between the suburbs and the inner city. The schools I work in here are both in wealthy suburbs, but they still only have a couple computer labs that are working half the time and just a few televisions to share among all the classes. Every school in Bavaria gets the same amount of government money. Its also hard for them to understand school pride. They don't have school sports here. Many of them are in sports, but its always city groups or private clubs. There's no competition between schools here, they are all the same. Thats socialism for ya. Anyway. I have a few teaching assignments for next week! One class is studying the american south and I said I could prepare something about debutant balls and southern society for them... including some Ring Dance pics :) I warned them that my perspective on the south is probably not accurate, being a midwesterner, but the teacher was interested in hearing what other americans think about the south. And in another class I'm going to teach them how to write American resumés, which is really different from the German or Brittish Cirriculum Vitae which is written as a narrative in paragraphs.

So... Thursday night, Caroline and I walked around a while and went up to Schwabing, the 'trendy' area near the university. The Bavarians would say it is 'Shicki Micki' meaning something like yuppie or preppie. We found somewhere for dinner and some drinks and went to another bar later closer to the city center. Fridays I don't have school so we had the whole day to be tourists. We slept quite late and then decided to go to Victuellenmarkt for lunch. Victuellenmarkt is a big permanent market place in the city center with butchers and bakers and fruit and wine and cheese and anything you could ever want. It took us quite a while to wonder around and find what we wanted and utensils to eat it with, but it was yummy! Then we went to the Deutsches Museum which is supposed to be a very famouse museum of science and technology. We were rather dissapointed. It is really big and there is tons of stuff in it, some of which is very cool and interesting. But it is badly in need of an update. Everything looks like it was set up in the 70s and there was just too many different topics and no flow to anything. There wasn't very much interactive stuff, and the few things that were interactive were not working. Boo. If you are really really into mechanics or ships or planes or textiles or printing or flying then you might like it more than I did. So, after that we consulted Lonely planet for some suggestions of what to do in the area we were in which is called Heidhausen. We found a great cafe and a really cool little movie theater that shows english movies. We walked around alittle too, I really like the Heidhousen area, more more than Schwabing I think. the buildings are all pretty and there are lots of cafes and resturants. the theater we went to had a world record for the longest running movie ever!! It's been showing the Rocky Horror Picture show for 29 years! How cool is that? I think I'm going to have to go back and see it sometime :) Caroline and I saw Broken Flowers, I enjoyed it in an artsy realism open ending kind of way.

Caroline left Saturday morning. I went to meet another family who wants me to baby sit probably at least once a week for them. I stayed and whatched the two boys for an hour while their parents did some arrands. They were very sweet, 5 and 7 years old. Their mom is American and their dad is Swiss and works for Microsoft and was transfered here a couple months ago, which seems to be a theme among families who have contacted me. Their house, it turns out, is quite close to the Walmart here in Munich so I decided it would be a good time to make a trip there. Yay Walmart! If you think Walmarts in the states are a little crazy and disorganized then you should have seen this one. It was still nice to see a somewhat familiar store though. I ended up spending a few hours there and buying a ton of stuff. I'm still trying to figure out how I spent so much money with out buying anything over 15 euros. When I got back my coputer was dead... but I had lots of time to set up my room! It's very pretty and gemütlich now. I haven't met many people in my building, just one spanish girl who is nice but doesn't speak very good english or german...

Today I decided I should find a church. I heard some bells ringing earlier, so I figured I'd just leave before ten and walk around until I found a church service. This may sound crazy, but this is Bavaria we're talking about, extreamly catholic and a church on every courner. Sure enough, I found one just in time for mass. Its just couple blocks away and is a pretty Rococo kind of style builing (I think) The average age of the congregation was probably 60 or so, but thats allright, I'll probably go back next week. While walking I saw a bit more of Großhaden, the area I live it. There's more there than I thought, a couple resturants and bars, a few big beer halls with beer gardens, naturally, no street corner would be complete without a beer garden in Munich. This afternoon I went for a run and ended up running into part of the huge cemetary near me before realizing what it was, is it disrespectful to run in a cemetary? I'm not really sure, I guess I should stick to the paths through the adjecent forest . It is a really pretty and really really big cemetary though, perhaps a better place for rambling, if I can manage to not get lost.

I really really hope I can get my computer fixed soon :-/

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