Mom: “Hah, okay tell me again in a week. Then I’ll know your serious.”
I’m quite sad now. I finally got around to doing a long, updated post. And then, like every writer does at some point or another, I accidentally deleted it when I meant to save it. Simply awesome. So here we go again (though I have to work tomorrow so this will probably be much shorter!)
I feel like being a college student is an ever going cycle. Because I am in college I have no time to travel, but if I didn’t go to college, I wouldn’t be able to get a job; therefore, while I might have the time, I wouldn't have the money to travel! I know college will help me in the long run, but being stuck back in my home town while sick with the travel bug stinks!
I love the reaction I get whenever I tell people I fluently speak German. They ask me to say something in it and their response is always, “But you’re a sweet, innocent girl! How could something so scary sounding be coming from you!?” Maybe it’s because I’m a linguistics person, but German has never really sounded scary to me… though I will say I do sometimes think Germans decided how to spell words by randomly choosing 31 letters out of a hat. A perfect example would be words like
Believe it or not, this means ‘maximum speed limit,’ and I actually have used it in a normal conversation (and conveniently enough it has exactly 31 letters).
Random Person: What you speak German!? Say ‘Hello!’
Never gets old.
So let’s see, what’s new!? I have somehow managed to get straight A’s so far this semester (for all you Germans out there,that means I’ve gotten 13, 14, or 15 on all of my Prüfungen so far), and I’m also the German tutor. I absolutely love doing this because not only do I (apparently) get to help people improve their German grades (I’m quite altruistic at heart), but I get to teach people about strange German words and expressions such as ‘geil.’ While the Germans may be EXTREAMLY efficient in both their language and the way they run their country, they somehow made the mistake of making the word for ‘awesome’ and ‘horny’ be the same thing. After answering a difficult question correctly, one of my German students said, “Ich bin so geil,” and while he intended to tell me “I am extremely awesome,” he actually informed me that he is, in fact, extremely horny. After correcting him, he thanked me for my ‘kindheartedness,’ rather than me allowing him to walk up to a group of Germans this summer during his internships and inform them of his ‘horny-ness.’
*Explaining a topic in math*
Angie: Ach ja! Das stimmt!
Ali: What does stimmt mean…?
Angie: It’s like… ‘agreed’ in German.
I’m also an active member of the Political Science Club at my college (this would be a great time for me to post photos, but my camera has still not been located ), and I would encourage everyone (whether you are American or not) to keep updated on the presidential election happening this November!
Conveniently enough, one of my managers (at my second job) speaks some German. The only downside to this is if I’m ever upset around him, he can usually understand the (inappropriate) things I’m saying under my breath. And I should really get out of the habit of answering the phone in German while at work too…
Despite going to school for 19 hours a week ( a college student is considered to be a “full time student” at 12 hours a week) and working 25-30 hours a week, I still manage to have time for fun with my best friend… even if we are a little strange at times.
Hope you all have a nice week, und Deutschland, ich vermisse dich so unglaublich sehr!
Seeing as I still write this blog, the previous subtitle, “A California Girl in Germany” now seems inappropriate… while I may always be a Californian girl…. I won’t always live in Germany, so the title has officially been modified from
and let me assure you, I have most certainly been Germanized in multiple regards. Even now, after I have been in California for two and a half months, I still start conversations with people I don’t know in German and eat ‘the German way.’
I promise I’ll write soon, I started a new job this week (on top of already tutoring German and going to school full time) and most of my friends have been leaving this week to go off to school, so I’ve been busy saying goodbye and with work, but I just had to share this with you all, I miss moments like this so much! Yaaay language barriers!
My younger brother has been sick the past few days, so in my free time (or rather, in time I could be doing productive things but choose not too) I have been watching television with him to keep him company and today while we were watching Phineas and Ferb, one of the characters randomly starting speaking German. Phineas and Ferb was already an epic show, but the random German simply made it the coolest Disney show ever.
Today I spent a ridiculous amount of time (something like four hours) wandering aimless in downtown Santa Rosa looking for post cards to send my foreign friends. Santa Rosa is the capital of Sonoma County, and Charlie Brown is from, here, so we’re a relatively well-known city, but I couldn’t find the Visitors Center to save my life. Finally after asking a friend to look up the address, and after asking several shop owners I found the Visitors Center. I finally understand why when I asked my German friends to take me to the Visitors Center in Hameln, they had no idea where it was.
People who receive these post cards, please feel extremely special because I put so much effort into finding them for you!
Despite the fact that I have been back in California for over a month now, almost two months at that, I still speak German daily. More importantly, I speak German daily at the least helpful times imaginable, such as during my Spanish course, or in my Speech course. While certain German words try and sneak into my vocabulary, the phrase, “Ach! Achso!” has simply actually become English according to my brain.
Angie: “Ach! Achso!”
Daniel: “Angie, what does ‘Achso’ mean?”
Angie: “It’s like… ‘Oh, I understand’ for lack of better wording…”
Daniel: “Oh. It sounds like a**hole. “
School has really gotten into full force, hence the extreme lack of writing here on this blog, I’m taking 19 units this semester. For all of you who aren’t familiar with the American University System, that means I am in school for 19 hours every week (a ‘full time student’ is someone with 12 units) and the ratio is 1:2 so for every hour in class, I’m supposed to have two hours of homework. It takes up a lot of my time. Not to mention I’m a German tutor this semester and I have a second job at a retail sports store on the side. If only there were Germans coming in, though conveniently enough my manager (at both of my jobs actually) is in fact German.
(This is my best friend Rita and myself… if there is one nice thing about being back, it’s getting to see Rita again.)
I’m currently pursuing an International Relations degree (isn’t every ex-exchange student? ) with a major/minor (I have yet to decide) in German and/or Spanish. I also joined the Political Science Club, the Honors Society, and the Rotaract club at my college today, so I’ll (hopefully!) be able to stay up to date on events around the world and I’ll be staying up to date with Rotary projects through Rotaract!
Summer could not come sooner… if everything goes as planned, I’ll be headed back to Germany!
Deutschland, ich liebe dich!
P.S. My camera has mysteriously disappeared… it’s quite sad.
I’m leaving to catch up with my old sailing crew for Summer Cruise in about an hour, and I’m hoping it will help me get over my homesickness from Germany because I will gone from my ‘actual’ home for 10 days. Even though I have kept up a lot of my German habits such as ‘eating the German way,’ hanging up my clothes on a cloths line outside, and speaking German to everyone (whether or not it be intentional), it’s simply not the same. Merging into biculturalism is difficult, however on the bright side (quite literally!) I have yet to wear pants or tennis shoes sense coming back to California, it’s has been WAY to hot; it’s only been short and sandals for me!
Californized… Germanized… I don’t know what I am anymore. Probably a mixture of both I would guess. But I really need to say, being back… is strange. I should be a ‘good exchange student’ and say it’s different, because nothing is better or worse, it’s all just different. But I don’t know if I can bring myself to saying that. I feel like I traveled back in time after learning valuable life lessons and how to take care of myself.
My three extremely long flights weren’t too bad, and I even made a new friend along the way (typical Angie, right?)… though I did manage to leave my blazer on the second flight… normally I wouldn’t really care, but this blazer has pins, tickets and other memories of trinkets from hundreds of exchange students and memories. It’s disappointing how the only thing I left/lost/forgot is probably the most valuable.
German has magically integrated itself in my English (as have German customs into my actions)… which would be fine if 1) people here actually spoke German or 2) it actually made sense… but sadly neither of the two conditions fit my current situation. I often going around saying “no thing” instead of “no problem” as well as “think you?” instead of sarcastically saying “you think?”. Not to mention several other… inappropriate things that tend to slip out of my mouth.
Angie: Mom, can we please hurry if we stop at home so it doesn’t dauer?
Angie: …Is dauer a word in English?
Mom: Not to my current knowledge.
Conversations like this happen quite often as well, seriously “dauern” should just be made an English word though, it’s so much faster than saying “to take a long time.” There’s also the frequent occurrence when I say, “achso!” or “stimmt” mixed in with English. “Genau” comes up quite a lot as well, simply commonly used German words. “Stimmt” almost got me in trouble with one of my more conservative friends though, he thought that was my way of not swearing and simply saying a bunch of consonants together, when really I was simply agreeing with him in German.
I have also brought a lot of the things I learned in Germany back to California with me, whether I meant to or not. For example, I have not used a dryer since coming back and rather made my dad set up a clothes line and have been hang-drying and ironing my clothes, just like in German. I find it silly how Germany has very little sun in comparison to California yet it’s rare to own a dryer in Germany, whereas in California it’s rare to hang dry our clothes.
People keep asking me if I’m happy to be back, and yeah it’s nice to gain some pigment in my skin and see my old friends and family again, but I guess I’ll always be a German-girl at heart.
Hah, talk about the fastest year of my life.