I guess the thing about regular updating is to regularly update, eh...
Since I'm a nut, I'll tell you in a nutshell:
Last Friday, Germany:
After successfully completing a five - hour trajectory on S - train, ICE train and metro from Berlin to Nürnberg, I missed a bus stop going from Nürnberg to Wendelstein. Just one. The GPS needs the initial contact with internet, so no GPS. It's 6pm, stores are closed or closing. No one seems to live here? Finally, I came to a store which had the store address written on it so that I could call a taxi and tell them where I was. I texted the host to ask for a taxi number, bitte. I had not explained where I was properly, so she gave me one for Nürnberg. In Nürnberg, after playing lots of nice and relaxing classical music sponsored by my roaming charges, they gave me another number for local taxis. I called and the gentleman said that the address I was giving them was more than 150km from where I wanted to go. I cannot helping you, lady! I tried to explain that I had just missed one bus stop, but started crying so he hung up, lol. I looked at the door to the store again and above the address it said "our partners".
All the while, two Deutschers were sipping beer at a table a few feet away. One of them had a sac of Roggenbrot sitting on his lap, no joke! So I asked them (phonetic spelling to follow since I mostly just listened to a German CD and have had little contact with text):
"Ednschuldigung? Bitte, wie heisst erste strasse?"
They briefly discussed amongst themselves and came up with the correct answer. Then they asked me several extended questions which I did not understand so I said
"Es tut mir leid, aber ich sprehe nicht sehr gut Deutsch. Ich brauche nämlich einen Taxi, aber ich weise nicht wo ich bin".
They asked where I want to go and tried to explain to me that they were going to anrufen ein taxi for me. I felt like an Indian lady from work, smiling and shaking my head until miming with props made me understand that "anrufen" means "telefonieren". So nice!! They looked like they knew everybody in town including the taxi driver, the store verkauferins and the people who waved at them from every second car that passed by. They didn't hesitate to ask for help from the audience as well as call a friend and waited for the taxi with me. When the taxi got there, I shook their hands and said "Danke schön für ihre zeit" and "zehr erfreut". When I got to my destination, the extremely nice landlady and landlord didn't seem to mind that thanks to my Deutsch immersion precedent, I arrived more than an hour late. The landlady and I laughed a lot because she didn't understand where I was because I had spelled the store's name - REWE - in English. However, she understood at once when I mentioned the two guys trinking beer (aaaah! Rivi!)
. They do it every day there, apparently. Knowing your alphabet is important. I've already learned that in France trying to spell my email ( j = "ji" oder "je"?). The German couple speaks ziemlich gut Englisch, aber she showed me the house in Deutsch and surprisingly, I understood! Including "Rauchen Sie?"
Today, Newcastle: every tenant - landlord - hooking - up network seems to want to leave me homeless in this country. However, I finally moved in today. Here's a riddle for ya:
Who looks like a landlady, sounds like a landlady, sits like a landlady, laughs like a landlady, dresses like a landlady, cooks like a landlady, has a hairdo like a landlady and nails like a landlady but is not a landlady?
(Answer: a landlord - crossdresser).
Vegan and a music teacher, comes complete with a cat. Perfect. I've moved in today :). I'd wash the whole place in a giant dishwasher with lots of fresh - smelling soap, but never mind me, that's just me! I am far from being as artistically inclined. This extremely welcoming person lost all three sets of keys, but made me juice. With ginder! I'd been craving carrot juice all week.
I'm not even mentioning tea. Tea just runs in the background, like a waterfall. Luvleyh!
Thought I'd already been homeless for a small lifetime, but this morning I was surprised to realise it was a Monday, and still Septmeber. Which means that I have only left France two weeks ago in a hurry, hiding an extra suitcase stuffed with extra stuff under the stairwell where someone else had previously hidden a cardboard box because the person who was supposed to transfer it over to the less fortunate never showed up and, having forgotten to defrost the fridge the night before, I left it still drippng. I would like to think that it's all evaporated by now and the floor is nice an shiny and ready for the dry socks of the new assistants who don't yet suspect what they'd signed up for.