Hang-en cave

Hang-en cave
(credit: National Geographic)

Friday, June 4, 2010

A Breather

It's been pretty crazy busy since yesterday. Last night, right after I posted, I left to go to a running dinner, which I'd never even heard of. It was a blast: we split up into teams of American students from the program and their German buddies, and then each team prepared one part of the meal and went to other teams' houses or apartments for the rest of the meal. So each team had an appetizer, a main course, and a dessert at a different place with a different group of people. Lena (my German buddy) and I biked to the first two places, and then took a bus across the city and the river to a different neighborhood for dessert.

And that was all for last night's activities--it took a long time, though, since we had to bike all across town, and then the host team had to cook the food, and then we all got to eat it. But it was a great way to see more of the city and to get delicious home-cooked food.

This morning I finally got to see my lab. It's about three and a half miles from my dorm, so I have to bike to a bus stop in Poppelsdorf (a neighborhood a bit southeast of where I live) and then take the bus all the way to the university clinics. My lab is a really nice lab--there are three other undergraduates working there, and a whole lot of very nice graduate students and post-docs. I finally start work on Tuesday, after I meet with someone in occupational health. I'm really, really, really excited--it's sounds like it's going to be such an amazing project.

I also went to a chemistry lecture with my German buddy in Poppelsdorfer Schloss this morning before lunch--I didn't understand anything except the equations, but it was cool to see just how well the actual science translated. After lunch in the student cafeteria (called a Mensa), all of the program's participants walked to our German culture class. We have an awesome professor from the university who taught us about famous Germans we should know, like Angela Merkel, Bach, Beethoven, Luther, Joseph Ratzinger, Nietzsche, and the captain of the German soccer team Michael Ballack. He also taught us that we should hate Kevin Prince-Boateng, who injured the captain of the German soccer team, and now Ballack can't play in the World Cup. Soccer is a big deal here, if you didn't know.

After class, I walked around the city and took pictures, and I did a little bit of shopping--I finally got a tiny frying pan and a little pot, so that I can cook not directly on the cooktops, and some dishes so that I don't have to eat off of paper towels anymore.

Life is good

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