Auf Wiedersehen und Danke schön!

goodbye

Nuremberg in Numbers:

Twenty-four: the number of weeks I was living in Germany.

Three and a half: the number of months winter lasted.

Eight hundred and sixty-four: the number of hours I worked.

Five: the number of wonderfully dedicated people who came to visit me.

Nine: the number of days I have left.

 

It has been a long journey, but it’s finally coming to an end. I feel like I’ve been here so long at this stage, that I’m pretty much a part of the furniture. However, I feel like a piece of furniture which is living in the wrong house. I have been put there for a while until my old home is ready for me to move back into it again, and every day for the last one hundred and seventy two days I have been looking forward to returning to my proper abode. I’ve been waiting (not always patiently) to come home.

Now, I am on the final stretch. The road before me is smooth and I can just about see the finish line up ahead. It hasn’t always been this way though. There were times along the way when I thought I would never reach the end. I felt tired and alone and I just wanted to sit down in the middle of the path and cry. Cry so hard that my tears formed a river beneath me and carried me the rest of the distance I needed to travel.

But looking back now, I’m glad I walked this route. It wasn’t something I was looking forward to and it definitely isn’t six months I would like to repeat again, but I feel a great sense of accomplishment, knowing that I can do this (and have done it!) on my own.

Despite the fact that winter here lasted what seemed like an eternity and was the coldest in Germany since way back when, I don’t want to paint a picture completed covered with thick, dark clouds, because I feel that would be unfair. Unfair to a city which, I’ll openly admit, is beautiful. The buildings here have been rebuilt and there is a wonderful mix of the old and the new. Riverside cafés, pretzel stands and bakeries filled with assorted glazed pastries on every corner, market stalls specializing in every possible knick-knack, along with an abundance of fountains and statues all contribute to the character of the city.

Of course there will be people and things which I will miss: my work colleagues (i.e my work friends) and the crazy conversations we have together and the uncontrollable laughter which follows, the friends I have made in the apartment complex, the public transport system here (seriously, why can’t there be U-Bahns at home?), the regular restaurants which I frequent and their welcoming staff and last –but by no means least- pretzels! Trying to imagine a world without pretzels is just heartbreaking! Although for the past twenty years I have survived just fine knowing little of their existence, I now find myself wondering “without pretzels, what’s the point?” I figure I’ll just try and stuff as many of them as possible into my case (and face!) before coming home!

So, to sum up, Germany –and Nuremberg in particular- is a very picturesque place. There are some wonderful people here, some great sights and some DELICIOUS breads! This has definitely been an experience to remember, something which has helped me to grow and become independent, and a reminder of how much my home, family and friends mean to me.

Thanks for all the memories, I’ll never forget them.

I guess all that’s left to say now is:

Auf Wiedersehen, Deutschland!

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A Translator’s Daily Prayer (!)

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Lord, help me to relax about insignificant details beginning tomorrow at 7:41:23 am PST.

God help me to consider my customers feelings, even if most of them ARE hypersensitive.

God help me to take responsibility for my own actions, even though they’re usually NOT my fault.

God, help me to not try to run everything. But, if You need some help, please feel free to ask me!

Lord, help me to be more laid back, and help me to do it EXACTLY right.

God, help me to take things more seriously, especially laughter, parties, and dancing.

God, give me patience, and I mean right NOW!

Lord, help me not be a perfectionist. (Did I spell that correctly?)

God, help me to finish everything I sta

God, help me to do only what I can, and trust you for the rest.

(And would you mind putting that in writing?)

Lord, keep me open to others’ ideas, WRONG though they may be.

Lord, help me be less independent, but let me do it my way.

Lord, help me follow established procedures today.

On second thought, I’ll settle for a few minutes.

Lord, help me slow down

andnotrushthroughwhatIdo.

Amen.

“Happy Longest Day of The Year” Day

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June 21st 2013 celebrates the Summer Solstice or the longest day of the year. It also marks the beginning of summer for those in the northern hemisphere. Here’s some information on the event and a few fun things that you can do to honour the occasion!

Firstly, it is important to note that there are two solstices per year- the Summer Solstice and the Winter Solstice. A solstice is an astronomical phenomenon, whereby the sun reaches either its highest or lowest point in the sky relative to the celestial equator. The term comes from the Latin words sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still).

The Summer Solstice takes place during a hemisphere’s summer, which means that Europe, North America, Asia and parts of Africa celebrate the occasion between the 20th and 22nd of June, while those in Australia, South America and Antarctica mark their Summer Solstice between the 20th and 23rd of December each year.

It is also referred to as the longest day of the year (for those in the northern hemisphere), as the event occurs on the day which has the longest period of daylight. For those south of the equator it is simultaneously the shortest day of the year with the least sunlight.

For those of us who thought that winter would never end, June 21st marks a special day: the start of summer! So, as a way to celebrate the date, we’ve compiled a short list of some fun things to do this Summer Solstice. See how many you will do and remember to enjoy the extra daylight (and sunshine!)

1. Cook outside / BBQ

2. Plant a tree

3. Go camping

4. Make a birdfeeder

5. Go swimming

6. Sit outside and read a book

7. Fly a kite

8. Eat some ice-cream

9. Take a trek up a hill / mountain

10. Watch the sun set

The Voice of Seuss

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Raise your hand if you think language is fun? …Seriously guys, I’m the only one with my hand in the air here… This is awkward.

Although he’s no longer with us, I believe that if Theodor Seuss Geisel was here today he would be the first to agree with me. You’re probably wondering who this Mr. Geisel is. Well I’ll give you a clue:

He’s a man who loves Green Eggs and Ham, is friends with the Grinch and Horton, and has a Cat who wears a Hat.

Yes, you’ve guessed it- Theodor Geisel was best known under his pen name, Dr. Seuss.

I’m pretty sure most people have heard of Dr. Seuss and, if you’re anything like me, the first thing you’ll think of when you hear his name is colourful droopy drawings and fun characters. However many of his books also contain much deeper messages and morals on social and political issues (Click on the above picture for some examples).

Here’re just a few of his great sayings and links to some of his poems:

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind”

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple”

“Being crazy ins’t enough”

“Adults are just obsolete children and the hell with them”

“A person’s a person, no matter how small” (I particularly like this one, as I myself am not exactly the tallest!)

http://cat-the-hat.blogspot.de/2009/02/cat-in-hat-poem-on-aging.html

http://papahere.com/about-blog/poetry-of-dr-seuss/

http://bloggingmis.blogspot.de/2009/04/dr-seuss-poems.html

And then she wrote…

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Another very quickly thrown-together poem. I promise I’ll try harder next time.

As always, x

No feeling is greater

Than a pen nestled snuggly between one finger

And the next

Whether its purpose is for doodling

Taking notes

Or simply writing text

A sturdy object

Elegant yet strong

It writes

Takes no notice

Of brightest days

Or darkest nights

Is there to jot down

Ideas, thoughts

And still

Must never be recharged

But works gladly

At your will

The pen is humble

Never asks for much

Is grateful merely

Of its owner’s touch

One day it will stop

Abrupt mid-word

And die

Then to the unassuming pen

We must sign

Our last goodbye.

Poetry smoetry

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As it is currently Poetry Month, I have decided to try my hand at writing verse. This will probably not be the last poem I write, so please feel free to comment and critique. Also, I’m not claiming that this is any good at all, I just like the medium of verse and want to encourage others to give it a go too! Thanks for reading 🙂

That girl

To call me a loner is to be misinformed

You, in your ignorance, have jumped the gun

Like all the others

You have seen this girl and thought

That she prefers it this way

Chooses to be on her own

You, in your ignorance, are so wrong.

This girl is not a loner

She is alone

Not by choice, but by circumstance

She wishes it were not the case

She longs for time spent

With other people

Longs for company, for talk

For someone to ask- how are you?

And actually wait to hear her response

Actually, I’m not so good

This girl goes to and fro

Alone

Eats, alone

Sleeps, alone

Lives, alone

Sometimes it feels as though

She hasn’t opened her mouth

To say a word for weeks

She forgets what her own voice sounds like

She hears others, passing by

Everything is blurry though

She hears the words, but does not stop to listen to them

What is the point? They will not talk to her here

Her feet keep moving beneath her

Bring her where she needs to go and back

The time taunts her

She counts the seconds, every one of them

Knowing it will be a long time, still

Before she is back home again.

You may call me loner

But I, I call myself brave.

The return of the prodigal daughter

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Pandas know what they’re talking about!

Wilkommen zurück! Bentornato! Bienvenue à nouveau! Basically, welcome back! 🙂

Sorry for the lack of posts as of late, but as you know I was back home in Ireland for Easter. And it was GREAT!! I had such a lovely time with my family and boyfriend. I didn’t actually do that much, but that’s kind of what I wanted. Last time I went home with an agenda to do this and meet that person, and it was just too much! I was mad I didn’t just chill out more and enjoy the simple stuff.
So that is exactly what I did for this trip home: nothing! And it was EPIC!!
I mean I did small stuff, like go for walks with my mum and visit my grandparents and go out for dinner and go shopping and get pizza with le boyf, but nothing hectic. Also, I ate Easter eggs, as promised! My goodness, they should sell them the whole year ’round… although I’d be über fat afterwards and probably broke too… On second thought, maybe not!
It was super hard to get me to come back here. Not because Germany’s awful or anything *darting eyes* … but just because I’m a home bird at heart and I’m really only my happiest when I’m at home or with my family. At the start of this stint abroad everyone said “Oh, the experience will do wonders for you” and “You won’t want to come home once you have a taste of freedom and independence”. To these people I say, I have tasted freedom and it made me go:
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That is not to say that I am dependent on other people in order to survive… I’m just saying it makes things a lot easier! I’m obviously managing, because I’ve been here almost 3 months now (is that ALL?!) and I’m still alive, so that’s always a good sign! I’m simply saying that having other people around makes me A.) happier and B.) less likely to die by eating out-of-date foods because I forgot that not all foods last forever …Do you see why I need other people now?
Anyway, that said, I’ll try and veer this post back to the direction in which in started, i.e. my return from the homeland!
And now for social niceties: how was everyone else’s Easter? Do anything much? Eat as many eggs as I did? Tell me all!
I might get to post later today and if not then it’ll be au revoir until Monday (I’m not going away again, I just use the weekends to sleep… a lot! *See the above pandas*). Hope y’all have a nice weekend!
As they say in German- Viel Spaß!

hugs x

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