Saturday, April 28, 2012

London Chronicles: English Dr. Pepper

I bought a Dr. Pepper today hoping to get a little taste of home. I am desperately trying to save money, which makes eating difficult. I am contemplating living off Digestives and creamy English yogurt for the next six weeks. I thought a taste of home would be comforting during my difficult London diet. Unfortunately,  English Dr. Pepper does not taste like home: it has a very "coke-ish" aftertaste. It does win some points in advertisements. On the label it says "Win Pants or Prizes." Remember, pants in England means underwear, so next to this there are pictures of boys underwear (red and yellow diamond and green zebra print). Now that is what I call an advertisement. Who doesn't want to win their underwear from a soda label? 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

London Chronicles: In Search of a Moleskin

 I cannot find a blasted moleskin.

This is a problem because moleskins are essential for traveling excursions.

The most important reason: they make me feel artistic

It strikes a Romantic chord to carry around a small booklet that you sketch in, compose poems in, and write down your innermost thoughts. Even if my drawings are elementary, my poems lack ingenuity, and my innermost thoughts are least I feel artistic. It is a magic notebook of creative entitlement. Even when you buy a moleskin, it has a blurb talking about the creative geniuses that used it. I guess you could say that it is like a kid wearing Michael Jordan shoes because he thinks they make him more like Mike: jump a little higher, etc.

So today I made the two other girls with me halt our excursion to the Tate Modern because I thought I spotted a moleskin. One was a deceptive decoy. It was some London book that had information already in it. What desecration of the creativity of the moleskin! You use a moleskin to write down your own notes about London, not to have them already filled out. The nerve. The second time, it I found it had lines. can I draw when there are lines. Lines refrain artistic expression!

I must find a moleskin soon. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Welcome to Germany

Germany: welcome to the land of castles, green rolling hills, and charming villages. I felt like an inarticulate idiot the whole trip because I continued to repeat phrases like "this is so cool/awesome/brilliant/fantastic" and "this is so beautiful/gorgeous/etc." It was true every time I said it, and that is really how I felt. I just could not find the words to really do the landscape justice. Now I am going to embarrass myself by failing to find an eloquent way of relating my feelings on a public blog. Fail.


After layovers and writing a seminar paper in the air for eight hours, I landed in Frankfurt. The lovely family of my friend's in-laws came and picked me up, and we went to the neighboring town of Heidelberg. Technically it is on what is called the "Unromantic Rhine," but it epitomizes Romanticism as its castle inspired many German Romantics--even Goethe walked around these grounds. As far as the university goes, it is a Philosophy powerhouse. It boasts of many famous philosophers including Hegel and Gadamer. Impressive. Perhaps the most impressive fact about Heidelberg is that it was the birthplace of the gorgeous Michael Fassbender; we are forever in the debt of this German city.

 Here is the castle that inspired those German Romantics. 

This bridge is famous because Mark Twain used to sit and write on it. I'm sure all of those writings were witty and scathing. 

A view of the bridge from up above

The houses along the river

Awkward statue? Check. 

We returned to the village that my hosts live in. It is a farming community with fields full of cows, horses and a few chickens. As you walk around, you find these gloriously antiquated barn walls housing old and modern farming equipment. Similarly, the houses have walls that date back hundreds of years ago, add on walls from about a hundred years ago, and solar panels on their roofs. The yards and houses are impeccably kept houses and gardens. It makes for a colorful and gorgeous walk around the village streets. Among the town occupants is the "Bee Lady": a local women that keeps bees and sells candles and honey to her neighbors. Of course, I had to buy a few jars. Outside the village, there are innumerable nature walks--complete with foxes and deer. Unfortunately I only got to go on one walk through the village. If I had a few more days, I would have spent it just exploring this charming village.

The town pride and joy are these 12th century--I think they are 12th century--ruins, tucked behind one of the barns. 

 Every town in Germany has one of these poles. Mittelbrunn has flags for chickens, golfing, soccer, hiking, etc. If I had to join one of these clubs, it most defiantly would be the chicken one.

After getting gelato, we went to the top the hills around Mittelbrunn when the sun was setting. 

These yellow fields are blooming everywhere in Germany right now; they are used to produce oil.

Remember how I said I couldn't find the right words to express myself? Well I hope you get the reason why. Thank goodness for photos and artists to express what we commoners fail in expressing. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Downton Abbey Texts

Preface: This conversation takes place after finding out T--- watched three episodes of Downton Abbey and did not like it. T---'s way of characterizing the show and the actors made me fall in love with a little more.

Aside: Am I the only one that reads Downton Abbey in my head like Andy Samberg for this digital short?

H: don't be surprised if you guys are t-peed and it says "downton hater" in baked beans on your lawn

T: Hahaha actually, I am planning on watching an episode tonight. I'm still trying it out. K--- said she didn't really get into it until after 6 episodes.

H: I was hooked from the opening credits. My favorite character is Mary and the dog

T: Is mary the fiance who never grieved?

H: Lol

H: That is the funniest description ever

T: Hahaha, you would like her. She is also the one who killed the man during sex, and it gave him like a heart attack?

H: Yeah well it was a smart pun on the Elizabethan "to die" which also meant to have an orgasm. So it was a smart Shakespearean death.

H: But seriously, Isis is the coolest dog ever.

T: Indeed.

A few days later....

T: PS Did I tell you I fell in love with downton abbey and now I CAN'T WATCH THE second season because it's not streaming on netflix???

H: Bahaha that is your punishment for taking so long to like it. Whose your favorite character?

T: Not sure. Maybe the mom. CUZ SHE'S SO WEIRD WHEN SHE TALKS HAHA