Monday, 28 November 2005
Well it didn't actually snow on my birthday, but on Sunday there was SOOOOOO much snow!! Apparently it's the coldenst November on record! I think it's jsut for me because I was going to miss out by not being here for Christmas...!!!
Ok, birthday... Well woke up in time for breakfast (for once, I usually sleep too long then find they're just finishing or something...) got up and had a birthday brekkie. I got a Manner cake.. Manner are these really yummy wafers (I'm bringin back a fair number, hopefully they'll be allowed into the country!) and Bibi had laid them out on a plate, with a candle, and then 6 other packets (about 8cm by 8cm) on the table, and confetti, and a glass of orange juice with a straw and a bread dough man thing (I can't remember what they're called, but is the anti-St Nicholas or something) which was yummy... From the family I got all that Manner, a really nice Guardian Angel necklace (tradition here that everyone has one) and the cassette tape of Die Monster AG (monsters inc), for german listening practice!!
Then my host parents went out, and Bibi and I got ready for the surprise lunch for my host mother (her birthday was on wednesday!). We all met up at hte local Gasthaus, including heaps of other family and ate deer for lunch... Can'T say I really liked it all that much, largley jsut because it was a little too rare for my tastes... erk! Oh, and my parents rang me before that!
After that we moved back home, for the three cakes people had brought and general afternoon of chatting and coffee and all (and then the skiing in the evening!)
So that was my actual birthday! Yesterday Bibi and I had the hosue to ourselves because Margrete and Fritz had to go to a funeral (is today, but 5 hours drive away)so that was nice. We just lazed around, watched lots of episodes of Pimp My Ride (there was really nothingo n tv, and we had our English Test today!) and ate lots of left over cake (and I read over about 100 things for Bibi!!)
Today we had the 'schularbeit' 2 hour english test, not really too hard, although I think I wrote way too much! Had to go through and change all my & signs to and though, because the teacher last time nearly had a fit.... Then I got my pressies from my friends... More Manner (I have 18 as pressies now.. Think I'll eat a bit, but there'll still be more to come back!!!), gummy bears, mozart kugel, a cool austrian slug keyring (like Imo K's if you've seen that!) Also the 2nd Echt Fett DVD, hooray!!!! And a book (in German) to read on the plane (an Ian Rankin, I did the whole cough-point thing to show Simone which I wanted!)... Ummm I think that's all!
Gotta run! As usual! Mrt up with Magdalena for the last time today, we went to the Ars Electronica centre again, even better with someone else! Lots of fun! Had my last extra English lesson too, they all got nice Tim Tams and my cards (with all my details!) hence the new message at the top... Put it in google and tell me how it translates (if you're bored that is!)
Btw, fashionable colours ofr the Christmas Wreath this year, brown and orange!
Saturday, 26 November 2005
Well sent my final postcards today, I think.... Liz was the other person with the birthday card!! Thanks LIz!!! It was about 3 weeks early, but better early than never!!!
Must be off again!!
Thursday, 24 November 2005
Und jetzt, eine kleine Nachrichten für meiner Schülcollegen (wie schreibt man dass?)... Bitte, ihr durft meine(s?r?) Blog lesen, aber es ist besser wenn nicht! Ich sage nichts gemein (hoffentlich!) aber es ist wo ich schreibe was ich denke von meine abenteure, und ist für alle meiner Familie and Freunde und andere Leute in Australien! Normalerweise bin ich ehrlich, und ich habe liebe dass ihr es nicht liest wenn ich noch in Österreich bin. Nächstes Jahr, schreib ich viel für euch, Deutsch oder English (bin noch nicth sicher welcher!)!! Danke!! Blergh, ich kann nicht Deutsch schreiben!! (Tut mir leid Frau Bye, wenn Sie es lesen!)
Anyway, let me give everyone a little description of how cold it is outside... I was walking along to the library from school, about a 5-10 minute walk, eating my ham sandwich (not a roll, sorry, that was yesterday!) and the ham, which started as fresh and pink, gradually dried out and went that dried out brown ham colour.... Still tasted fine though... The bread too was distinctly cold and a little dryer.... I got an icecream type headache from breathing through my nose.... So yep, it's cold, but I must say it's nice!! I do like a bit of cold weather!! Especially since it looks like I'm going to be getting a white birthday!!! Hooray!!!
Speaking of my birthday, thanks everyone who's sent me cards... Erica, your's is sitting on my desk waiting for saturday. But thanks Mum and Dad, Granny, Pam and Charles, Clari, Bridget and I have a terrible feeling I've forgotten one... Thanks everyone!!
Here's a nce sentence our English teacher thought was correct: ...they go home every weekend, where they are being fed... Hmmm.... Now maybe that is technically correct, but it still implies to me that they are being constantly fed at home, despite only being there on the weekend... Try explaining that to a teacher who doesn't actually recognise that there is a mistake, especially when you absolutely cannt talk English (and I'm serious here, ever since I#ve started to only read German book,s my ability to think in English, and help other people in English has gone so far down hill, jack would have trouble catching it...) I'm ok on the blog, I can do that (just´) but normal life.... woah! My German isn't so crash hot in writing, as you may see at the beginning, so really I'm all even, talk in German, write in English...
Must be off, have to go to music, then find a birthday pressie for Simone... AHHHHHHHHHH! No idea there!!!
Btw, funny sign.... Nütze unsere Küche und bekoche deine Freunde... Now this is harmless use our kitchen to cook for your friends... but get rid of the 'be' in 'bekoche' and you get a different story... Who can tell me what...?
Monday, 21 November 2005
Thankyou Katherine and Erica for your affirmative comments on my weblog....
Btw, here's a comment I agree with very much (came from the Lonely Planet email newsletter)
If you actually look like your passport photo, you aren't well enough to
- Sir Vivian Fuchs
And now I can'T get it out of quote mode, so i'll be off!!
Saturday, 19 November 2005
So the Ball.. Well Bibi and I wagged music yesterday afternoon, so we could go to the hairdresser (the teacher told us he'd be late, and althoug he couldn't officially cancel the class, if we weren't there, it wasn't a big issue!) I got my hair cut (i told her I have to be able to tie it all back, needs to suit my face (duh!) but that's all my requirements!) and was told a few times, 'don't be shocked by how much I'm cutting here (a lot, it was almost to my elbow again, and now is almost all above my shoulders, so about 15 cm is gone) and 'don't be worried if it looks like there's smoke (the straightener, never thought I could get my hair straightened, but it made it very smooth with the flip at the bottom!)... Was fun though, especially seeing Bibi sitting there under the old lady perm/space machine... Then I got homeabout an hour before her, I ate and prepared, and then got a fantastic jaw drop from Bibi when I appeared... Very funny! But we both looked really different for the night (I actually don't think a few people recognised me)! Her hair was all in curls! Got to the ball, delivered our coats (and spare shoes) and waited for ages for everyone to get there so we could go in! Everyone can invite up to 7 people to come to the Ball with them (family and close friends), so there were A LOT of people! Once we went in, we found our table, (about 3 rooms with reserved tables (had to reserve a place)) and sat down. Tried prosecco, is a Ball tradtition, but can'T say I really liked it, jsut like fizzy white wine... erk! There was a big ball room, where we watched a girl from our class perform a very cool dance, and the midnight bag out the teachers performance... There was also a (very loud) room with live bands, and lots of other such things. Very easy to lose people! Basically we just floated all over the place for 5 hours, I got my handbag signed by people (found a really terrible, cheap bag, white pvc, and people signed it for me!) etc etc! Eventually we left for the after party (I was really horribly tired, that's one of the worst things about having to speak a foreign language all the time, it's incredibly tiring, even when you don't realise it (realise it at 2am, trust me!) We had to wait until our first train hoome, at 5am... Melanie and I weren't that happy in Cheese, the bar for the after party, it was at first a little boring, and we were sitting right near the speakers (I hate it when places have jsut 2 speakers for a large space, so they're always really loud to sit near... But anyway!) Once it started to get interesting however, we'd both developed small headaches, and sore throats from yelling, and decided to go early to the train (Bibi stayed, and got home at 8am). That was a bit sad, that we couldn't stay, but it was just getting a little much! Was all rather funny though, lots of drunk Austrians singning loudly along with German songs, standing on tables swinging their biersteins (those really big beer glasses)... It was really... well.... proper!! Just like Austrians are supposed to act with the beer!
So got home at 5;30, was freezing cold, went to bed, and slept until 12:30, got up again and came into town!
Overall it was a fun night, alhtough not the best i#ve had, but I'm glad I went along! Simone came with laryngitis (or something).... Poor poppet!
Ummm.... Yep that's all folks! Oh no! Very cool, my mobile now works with all sim cards, including Aussie ones, hooray! And the guy in the shop did it for free, not entirely sure why, usually it costs €18 ($30ish) which was great, maybe it was the novelty of serving an Australian!!! Hooray!! And I can send as much stuff home as I like, through my host father's work, for free!! I don'T know why, or what strings were pulled, but it's fantastic!!
So tarra! tschüss!
Wednesday, 16 November 2005
Anyway, sorry, would talk more (sorry Kath, pity about the study) but I have to run off and buy some last minute Ball things!
Btw, I don'T want to buy more credit f0r my phone, so i'll not be replying to anyone's messages unless they're REALLY urgent, and those people with birthdays coming up, won't be getting a message.... Sorry! But I don't think I'll be needing €20 in the next 3 weeks....! So don't worry if I don'T reply, if I need to tell you something, it'll be here or through email!
Saturday, 12 November 2005
Ball next week, eeek! Having my hair done, although for costs I'm planning on just getting it cut (who knows how!) although since Melanie's family is involved with the business, and she's coming along with Bibi and I, there could be mates rates or something - I don'T know if they do such thing here! Looking forward to the ball though, should be fun! Taking a traditional film camera, because I love getting photos back from things like that!
Really that's all... Btw, don'T know if I gave the wrong impression, but i am actually going to be going oit fro the birthday meal as well with my host family! Don't worry!!
Congrats Clarrie! The skies wil never be safe again... Bridget, enjoy your last week in Mexcio, and then Jamaica (you still going there?)
Hey, I'll be back in tassie, officially at 10:15 pm, 8th December. Or a bit after 10 at least (although that could be a 3 hours bit, who knows what delays will spring up....) So there you go if you want to greet me (this isn't just an ego thing, people have actually asked...!)...!! Teehee! Welcoming committee, how special! But don't have crises because you can'T be there, I won't kill anyone, will probably be jet lagged, but hyperactive.....
Tuesday, 8 November 2005
I eventually deciphered my writings on my hand, and since my class has a maths schularbeit now, and I had to go on (in?) the internet now anyway, I thought i#d share!
There is a phenomenon i've noticed among fluent English speakers here (well, three people now), and that is using the word 'dear'. They often especially say 'danke dear'... Weird.... Sounds very funny, I think!
I don't know if I've shared my coffee thoughts before, but I don't think I have! I must say, I'm very disappointed in coffee, was hoping that maybe i'd learn to drink it here, and although i've tried, I just can't get over that disappointment! It smells so thick and substancial, but feels so thin, just like hot water with scent added... I don't know, maybe I've tried the wrong sorts, but the only way I like coffee is with drinking chocolate and milk, because then the thick smell matches the way it feels in the mouth. I already knew it wasn't as good to drink as to smell, but still.... I had hopes... Mum and dad however have bought a coffee machine, or espresso machine, or something, so maybe i#ll find a way that is good (I like the idea of coffee!)...
For the second year in a row, my birthday is the day of celebrations for someone else... Last year it was Chloe's 18th party, this year it's the party (well, family gathering, go out for dinner) for my host mother. I don'T mind, I know they won't forget about me, but it makes it hard to go out, like Simone and I were planning (her birthday is the day before mine).... I know how erica feels now, with the afl final always on her weekend!!! The next weekend is my last, an we're going to Vienna for the saturday, so the Friday night couldn't be too late... Maybe we'll do it next week instead... Anyway, is going to be strange having a birthday here... BTW, anyone thinking of sending me pressies, I have a request. Send only if:
- I can leave it here (ie, edible etc...)
- It's small and lightweight, maybe even squashy (I have to fit it into my suitcase remember!)
- It really cannot wait 2 weeks until I get back...
- It's money (actually, then just give it to my parents and they'll stick it in my account!!)
Weekend was fun, Edith, Bibi's half sister came over for the weekend. She's got heaps of really funny stories, is a flight attendant with Lufthansa (and therefore speaks German, English, French and Spanish, and maybe other things too). Umm.... Yeah, lots of stories about tricky customers and stuff, but was a good weekend!!
Anyway, i'm not here just to chat, this is just the continuation of the post below!
Monday, 7 November 2005
Anyway, i'm in the library now, because it's much cheaper internet (didn't have a clue how it worked, and they've got new computers here now) and because my usual internet cafe seems to be closed... Not entirely sure why, could read the sign on the door, but won't! This keyboard however is incredibly loud, and I'm worried about distracting the girl next to me, she seems to be reading something very deep and meaningful (prolly harry potter fanfic or something.. Wow, just glanced at her screen, and it is fanfic, dunno what though). But will prolly come here now, because it is so much cheaper ($1.60 per hour)...
Went to the theatre on Thursday. Medea von Grillparzer, with my German class. Was all in 19th Century German, but I pretty much understood it all I think, got the story at least, although not all the details. The set was very cool, although a little hard to describe, and I found myself going into drama reveiw mode 'which 2 actors will I write about?' 'what's the lighting like' etc etc.... i must say I enjoyed the theatrics more than the play, partially because I didn't have to concentrate as hard... Unfortunaltey there were heaps of students there, was a public performance though, and heaps just tlkaed through the whole thing, which I felt awful about. One of the actors came forward at the end and told everyone off, which i wanted to stand up and clap and cheer about, but didn't think was appropriate. Such behaviour during plays however always makes me edgy, I want the play to be over with so the people will stop talking and disturbin the actors. Weird I know... Anyway, I enjoyed ma night out at the theatre, and now I'm looking forward to getting KultureVulture again next year!
Thursday nigth was the EMAs... The MTV European Music Awards, which I watched a bit of the next day (getting a bit worried about my new found interest in music... Not overtaken my movie interest yet, but....) Were rather specky, lots of people (in Lisabon...!!) and hyper active musicians (the COldplay guy rang someone on a mobile an audience member was using to film the show, robbie williams went crowd surfing, althoug that was possibly just because he really couldn't sing.. and lots of other general hyperactivity). Was disappointed Rammstein got hte best German band award (not surprising, but still disappointing!)... I was going for Fettes Brot or Silbermond...
Has anyone ever used the phrase 'i shlepped to school'? Apparently it's areal English word, from the German Schleppen, to go somewhere reluctantly (as far as I could tell), but i#ve never heard of it... Maybe the English teacher was just testing me... But he says he read it in a book...
My parents tell me ther was great wind drama at home... Now power at our house for 2 days, after the power lines got ripped out of the side of the house.. Again... Sounds impressive... Don't really get anything like that here.... Hope everyone's alright though, no massive damage or anything...
I have two more things written on my hand, no idea what though... Make that one, one is the book hunt thing...
imo K back in Tassie... Hope all's good and sounds like you really had a great time!
I must be off, have to look up a bit of information...!!
Do people actually want the quiz answers? Has anyone done it? i#ll only give them if people want them!
Thursday, 3 November 2005
Autumn… Herbst…. Lots of balding trees, lots of leaves on the ground, not many evergreens around… The weather is weird though. It’s always coolish now, that’s ok, but the sky seems to have two options, the blue sky sunny day option, or the misty option. And when I say mist, I mean stuff that just hangs around for days and days, been the same since Sunday! I just wish it would properly rain and get it out of the system! I do like cold weather though, will be weird having a cold birthday I think! (not that it’s ever really been that warm, but you know what I mean!). There are heaps of stalls in the main street in LInz selling chestnuts an almonds and other nuts, they smell really good, but whenever I go past, I’m always only about ½ hour away from eating…. Will buy some sometime though!
Went to the ARS Electronica Center today. Very interesting place! Went on a tour (my ticket said I was to go on one, so I think everyone has to…!!) which was good, otherwise I wouldn’t have appreciated it properly, and even though it was all in Austrian, I pretty much understood everything (except when I started to think, hey I understand). Unfortunately there were HEAPS of people there, and I was all by myself (my class has a big maths test tomorrow, so everyone studying!) so I probably didn’t get as much out of it as I could have…! May go back in a few weeks! It’s the so called ‘Museum of the Future’ with lots of 3D stuff, and computer animation and all that. There was a room with spiffy 3D stuff (not just the normal red and green glasses, but high tech ones) which very cool – went on a tour of the Ideal City there… Also a fliying machine, where the user hangs in the air and ‘flies’ over Linz, wanted to have a go, but there were about 150 people (ok, maybe only 8) waiting, and I was getting hungry! But anyone who visits LInz will have to go there! Lots of completely useless stuff, but some cool stuff too!
Ummm… That’s about all my news, really not very interesting… Saw Minority Report on Sunday, interesting film, not bad, although not the best I’ve seen… Interesting idea though, of stopping the murder before the murderer commits it…. Read A Clockwork Orange yesterday, I liked it, although thought it could have ended about a chapter earlier. Good book though! Reading a Ian Rankin in German now, actually relatively easy, surprisingly!
Yesterday was All Saint’s Day, so the family got to go off and do family stuff at the cemetery. I was given the option of going along, but sitting in the car because only relatives are allowed in the cemetery, or staying home. Guess what I chose! Would have liked to have gone along and seen what happens, but wasn’t much point really, although I think there was also a big family get together or something, because they weren’t back until the evening, having left in the morning… I don’t know, but there didn’t seem to be any problem with me opting to stay home – my host mother suggested it as the more preferable option. So I had a nice day home alone!
Now that’s really all… It’S almost pitch black outside, and it’s only 5pm… The mist contributes, but the sun goes down at about 4:30pm….
Hey Kath, here are some hints for Jessie.... Yes, that's true I probably do know who you mean, but do you know how many Sam's there were in my grade (because I don't....!!!) Nah, I think I do know! Where abouts is she off too? When? Exchange? I want to know it all!
- Eat first, ask questions later (Just Eat It!)
- Try Mozart Kugel (mmmmm!)
- Pack an English dictionary – you’ll always need it for those weird words they ask you to define in English classes
- Visit Schönbrunn Tiergarten in Vienna
- Get an International Student Identity Card.
- Take A video with a few episodes of a favourite tv shows:(a) for when you just need some tv in English(b) for your new friends, so they can see familiar shows with the real voices (Simpsons for example) and practise their English
- Read a mixture of English and German books and newspapers. (Best available English newspaper, The Guardian International Edition)
- Join the lending library for those books (don’t buy too many!!)
- Take any opportunity given, and always ask more more!
- Don’t talk to loudly about Kommissar Rex (Saturday nights, 7:30 SAT1)
- Breathe in the culture (but not the smog! Just joking! Isn’t that bad!)
- Talk to everyone, just for practise!
- Don’t dwell on speaking mistakes.
- When in Austria, do as the Austrians do (but don’t smoke! You’ll stop noticing how many smokers there are after a while too)
- Be on your most helpful behaviour, especially with your host family. Useful phrases:
Kann ich helfen?
Kann ich etwas tun?
Soll ich das machen?
- Have a few yummy recipes – cook your way into their hearts!
- When in doubt, give a shout! Ask for help! If you don’t understand something, nodding, smiling and pretending you do will only backfire! (Just trust me on that point!)
- Learn how to day dream and look attentive – there will always be times when you just have to sit and listen, especially at the beginning, and maybe not really have a clue about what’s going on!
- There will be at least one time you feel it’s all bee a big mistake and you should just go home immediately. Hang in there, wait a week or two and you’ll be fine again! Distract yourself (I found cooking helps!), DON’T ring home. Set small targets and don’t look at the big picture – just to the end of the week or month. Remember that millions of people have done exchanges or moved to other countries, and have survived!
- Budget your money, but don’t avoid having fun because goes over your budget. You’ll only have this chance once and being a scrooge won’t make it memorable (well it might, but not in a good way!) Don’t forget that €1 doesn’t equal $1!
- Don’t be afraid to talk to your local representative about any problems you’re having, no matter how small they’ll seem. Otherwise your parents will do it for you, which just makes you feel silly…!!!
- Be prepared to hear this a lot:
‘Australien… Gibt’s bei euch Kangarus?’
- Everyone will tell you two things, one’s obvious, the other you’ll laugh about, but both are true:
It’s not wrong, just different!