Alive and Kicking in Darmstadt

October 27, 2012 at 12:10 pm (Germany)

For the first time since arriving in Germany three years ago these Autumn holidays are the first where I haven’t been jetsetting across Europe or the world.  Of course that doesn’t mean I haven’t been up to mischief since I last wrote.  😉  I’ve been enjoying Germany, Darmstadt and spending time with my friends and boy.

The new school year has started well and I have been blessed with a lovely year 5 class.  This year I am teaching only Year 5’s and the subjects English as a first and second language, Social Studies, Religion and Computers.  I’m really enjoying the teaching and am nowhere near as stressed out as I was at this time last year.  It helps that I am in my second year at the school and know how things work and how Year 5 runs throughout the year.  I took the class to the dairy farm again and am looking forward to our castle excursion and Medieval Banquet in December.

When I think back, my favourite memory over this period was my trip to Stuttgart to visit the Wasen and experience a German beer tent first hand.  I travelled down with Katharina and stayed with her primary school friend Jantje.  My primary school friend Suzie, her partner and Simon (an old friend of hers from uni days) met up with us there too.  The Wasen is basically a big fairground with tons of rides, food stands and carnival games as well as massive custom built beer tents.  The rides were amazing and put both Momba and the Melbourne Show to shame.  After a two hour wait in the line, we finally made it into the beer tent and danced the night away.  I swear to God, Germany has it’s own special brand of music sometimes.  We all had a brilliant night though.

Just a few days later I was off to London for a mini trip to see Liz of Kmart fame and her fiancee Rory.  We spent a day together with me playing London tour guide and in the evening Suzie and I went and saw Jersey Boys.  Both Liz and Rory were in good form and I wish I could have seen more of them during their European adventure.

Other highlights included a visit from Owen, meeting Martin’s parents (beautiful bike ride and visiting a celtic ring) , a Zwiebelkuchen and Federweisen evening and a trip to the Vivarium, which is a mini zoo here in Darmstadt.  The main attraction are some Bennett kangaroos… hahaha It was nice seeing some emus and frilled necked lizards though!  Unfortunately during this time I also had to say goodbye to a wonderful friend of mine who was awarded a scholarship to study in Strasbourg.  Conny, you are sorely missed!

Which brings us to the current Autumn holidays… mainly I have been fixing up loose ends here in Darmstadt, seeing friends and avoiding marking and school work like the PLAGUE.  Maybe tomorrow I will get on to it!  I spent four days visiting Katharina’s family in Oldenburg, which we have wanted to do together for ages.  Her parents were absolutely lovely and we had such a fantastic, stress free weekend.  We visited the German North Sea and I was finally able to see the traditional German Strandkörbe.  I definitely miss having the sea around here in Darmstadt.  We spent a day shopping in Oldenburg and another exploring Bremen.  We even went to the opera… a first for both of us.  I got treated to the best ice-cream and cake in Oldenburg and found it very amusing that the Oldenburg marathon route ran past Katha’s house.  We had a lot of fun cheering all the people on!  🙂

So Monday it’s back to school and indoor hockey training starts again.  There’s a lot to look forward to though… Christmas markets, a weekend in Switzerland and a trip to Sri Lanka with my boy over the winter holidays.  There’s never a dull moment here.  xoxo


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