It seems like a lifetime ago when I was able to watch the palm trees slowly sway from my balcony in beautiful San Diego. As with many places that seem like homes away from home, after arriving in Germany yesterday, I got down to business.
My travel day lasted around 20 hours, and my arrival in Frankfurt was significantly easier this time around because I had good friends waiting for me on the other side of the final customs door! I had originally planned to sleep as much as possible on the flight between Houston and Frankfurt, but it was not meant to be.
Both of my flights went well. As I was taking off from San Diego, I was able to (generally) see the condo complex that B and I live in, and I also had an Economy Plus seat and had plenty of foot room in front of me. I had plenty of time to connect in Houston but spent a decent chunk of time waiting in line to board. With Lufthansa, one does not get boarding groups, but follows a similar model to Southwest, with passengers waiting to get on based on row numbers.
The greatest part of the travel experience was flying on one of the new Airbus 380 planes! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, one of the largest planes in the world! It has two complete levels, shiny new interiors, and three cameras placed on the outside of the plane that passengers can watch during the flight! With all of the plane features and movie choices, I guess I’m not too surprised that I didn’t sleep much. During take-off I was convinced that we weren’t going fast enough to actually become airborne, but obviously it worked out.
After a nice afternoon in Wiesbaden, I took a train to Bonn and moved into the hotel room I will call home until September 12th. One of my BuKa friends accompanied me to see an apartment in the center of town, which went well even though I didn’t get that place, nor was I thinking it was the apartment for me.
|Hotel Acora, in Bonn-Tannenbusch|
I am cultivating an interesting schedule of getting up at 6 am each morning so that I spend a decent amount of time talking to B during his nights. Yesterday the early wake-up call also allowed me to get going to accomplish some of the bureaucratic responsibilities that come with living in a new country. I registered with the city, opened a bank account, and visited two more apartments. I actually got the one I wanted! I will share more details about the place at a later date, once I move in and can take pictures. But, for all of you planning on visiting me, I am renting two rooms, a bedroom and work/living room, so all are invited to sleep in my guestroom!!
Last night some of the BuKas went to an amazing Spanish restaurant that featured a lot of seafood. I am not the biggest seafood eater, having grown up in the Midwest, far from any salty bodies of water. I still tried a lot of things, including shrimp with heads and legs still intact (see below), and little octopi about one inch long. They were very chewy, to say the least.
|Seafood, or Meeresfruechte, in Germany, complete with animal heads!|
The rest of this week will be devoted to working on my German-language presentation on my fellowship project. We’ll see how that goes! Right now I just want a coffee or to take a nap!
I've posted a few more pictures on my shutterfly page, too!