Since orientation has ended and I pulled myself back out of the grave, my week has been nothing but banal. I’ve been on holidays since December 14th, and I’m starting to get antsy for real classes to begin. My German course has just been getting harder and just plain ridiculous. Actual conversation with our professor:
Student: “What is the longest German word?”
Prof: “There is no limit.”
I had to clean my brain off the back wall because it exploded. He explained that in German, they just combine words together to make new words. He then showed us one of his favourite words: “Donaudampfschifffahrtskapitän.” No, that wasn’t a typo, there are actually three f’s in that word. Do you know what it means (roughly speaking)? The captain of the steam boat on the Danube. 8 words in English = 1 word in German. That’sjustlikesayingawholesentenceasoneword. They say English is one of the hardest languages to learn, but after dealing with the sticky mess that is the different German grammatical cases and their Frankenwords, I certainly beg to differ.
BUT, while I was at a bar the other night, someone approached me to say, “Wie heißt du?” (What is your name?) and I nearly yelled “JENNIFER!” back as I was so excited to actually understand what someone was saying to me. My attempts to practice the language must make some Austrians wonder if something’s really wrong with me as I’m a bit too excited to do things like counting out my change aloud and am much too proud to announce, “DREI EURO FÜNFUNDZWANZIG!” (€3,25).
If I were to ask you to think of a Canadian food (that is not poutine), what would it be? Go ahead, take a moment.
…Yeah, I didn’t get anything either. When someone asked me what we typically ate for dinners in Canada, I replied, “Oh the usual stuff, you know: spaghetti, sushi, stir fry, curry…Wait no! Agh! Those are all foreign!” I’m all about diversity, especially in the realm of food, but our cultural/culinary mosaic is making it impossible to think of a traditional meal from home to serve at our international dinner. I considered ginger beef and maybe a Caesar, but I’d get sick of me and my pretentiousness saying, “ACTUALLY, they were invented in Calgary, so…” I think right now I’m pretty much going to serving maple syrup in a cup as roast beaver’s pretty difficult to come by here.
I’m leaving for my first official weekend trip to Prague this weekend. No. Big. Deal. While I don’t really feel like traveling because of the cold, grey weather, I put on my big girl boots and a large group of girls and I are heading to the Czech Republic to see what all the fuss is about. From the sounds of it, it’ll be a great time. I hope the sun comes out, so not all my photos are of us with only our noses poking out from our winter clothes. My mittened fingers are crossed.
P.S. Never tell a Vancouverite she’s going on a party boat if it is NOT, in fact, even going to be leaving the dock/isn’t on the ocean/the boat is made for geriatric cruises/it will not fit the number of people you have invited. For if you do, you will get an endless assault of stories beginning with “Well, when I was on a boat cruise in Vancouver…” and it will make you wish that the next time you just planned the official Buddy Network International Kick-Off Party on very, very dry land.