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GermanyGermany

Oktoberfest!

 I watched as the young woman's eyes rolled back in her head and she passed out standing up. The tent was too crowded for her to fall left, right, or face-forward, so gravity did its job and she fell backward, knocking over ten people at the closest four tables. It ... read more

Rachel Holan

GermanyGermany

Candy From A Baby

 The alarm went off next to my head at 6:20 a.m. I slunk out of bed and lit a candle to see my way down the stairs in the mountain hut. In the kitchen I found what I sought: a large metal pot and long wooden spoon. I tiptoe carefully ... read more

Rachel Holan

GermanyGermany

Mountains of Patience

 She's speaking to me again in German. She knows I don't speak German. It's 7:00 am, I am physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted and all I want is three cups of coffee, but Silvia our robust, smiling cook continues on with our morning ritual. '"Guten morgen Silvia....ja.....ja....kaffee, bitte......danke....." I say. ... read more

Rachel Holan

GermanyGermany

Wandering Downfall

 It's 5:00 am and I can't sleep. Maybe it's because I'm still a bit jetlagged from the 41 straight hours of travel I recently survived. From Auckland to Hong Kong to London to Munich by plane, to a small town called Immenstadt by train and then to a tiny village ... read more

Rachel Holan

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Let's Start at the Beginning- Europe

 I figure that the most important thing you do in life is to experience it and a big part of that is travel.  Europe was my first trip abroad, and it gave me an excitement for learning about the world that I would have never gained from books, and I ... read more

Jessica Michael

AustriaAustria

BulgariaBulgaria

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Two Weeks, Ten Countries: a backpacker's itinerary

Just over two weeks spent traveling through ten European countries. It was completely worth every minute spent planning the trip - but you're welcome to save yourself some time by stealing parts of our itinerary. We used an Interrail flexipass.  It was valid for 10 days of travel within 22, and ... read more

Anjali Nirmalan

GermanyGermany

Connecting Flight In Munich

We left early JFK, one of those elusive early departures that happen once in a blue moon. It's 8:05AM local time, and the morning is gray, gloomy, and wet. The flight was pretty sweet. Lufthansa is definitely at the top of my favorite airline list. Even economy class had comfortable ... read more

Viktor Nagornyy

AustriaAustria

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Lying in Church: The Backpacker's Religion

My friend Jade likes to lie in church. On the ground. It gets tricky in a house of worship; sometimes she has to settle for kneeling.  In the Hagia Sofia, she had barely a minute to soak in the 6th-century dome before a security guard dragged her up.   But ... read more

Anjali Nirmalan

GermanyGermany

LuxembourgLuxembourg

Dresden presentation went very well

I am meant to work with people. To teach, but not necessarily in a classroom. To make a difference in whatever way I can. Last week, I went to Dresden to attend my M.A. graduation. In addition, my colleague and I gave a talk about "Terminologiearbeit im Europäischen Parlament". I had ... read more

Devon Donohue-Bergeler

GermanyGermany

Stranded in Germany

 January 9,2010. Well this trip abroad has certainly been the most challenging and it has hardly started yet! I’m sitting in Frankfurt right now, quite sleep deprived, looking out the window at what must surely be a blizzard. I think I’m comfy right here, thank you. I can only imagine how ... read more

Michelle Saltis

BelizeBelize

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Where I have been thus far!

I started my travels abroad in April 2008, and so far I have been to eight countries: France, Germany, Canada, Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Belize, and Mexico. (I have also lived in California, New York State, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. I have been to Florida, Utah, Nevada(VEGAS baby!), Vermont, Connecticut, ... read more

Michelle Saltis

FranceFrance

GermanyGermany

La Vie Quotidienne

If you know me, you undoubtedly know my laugh. If you know me, you also probably know that I frequently suffer from a serious, rare, undiagnosed case of: The giggles. And for some reason, this strange malady has decided to heighten its frequency and severity overseas. The giggles, in case ... read more

Rachel Hammel

GermanyGermany

Heads or Tails? My quick trip to Berlin

We pulled up to our hotel pretty late in the evening. The drive from Prague to Berlin was painless; a bit long, but comfortable from the backseat of a car. Without having to pay attention to the road or which tram stop was approaching, I was able to delve deeper ... read more

Amy  Smith

Czech RepublicCzech Republic

GermanyGermany

When purpose found me

"Not a day passes that I don't think about what I'm doing here; that I don't wonder whether at 25 I should have my life figured out..." I began writing this post last night, but found myself start to piss and moan about the unknown. As I revisit my work this ... read more

Amy  Smith

Czech RepublicCzech Republic

GermanyGermany

Hamburgers, Sausages and Cologne Dom

Made it out of Prague and safely into Germany, despite the fact that our aircraft's main breaks malfunctioned right before landing; we circled for a good forty minutes before back-up landing gear thankfully kicked in. Left sunny Czech Republic, the first warm weather and clear skies we’d seen in weeks, ... read more

Amy  Smith

BelgiumBelgium

GermanyGermany

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Vatican City (Holy See)Vatican City (Holy See)

what's up in nola

I seem to think that my excuse for having no real job is that I am going abroad soon.  I think I'm just overly excited, letting myself make list after list of clothes I need, how to pack efficiently, learning how to blog about it, ect. It's a little overwhelming, ... read more

Ellie Connick

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Getting Around

Bicycling after a night at the disco is NOT a good idea

Danielle Cosme

03 Dec 2009

Germany

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Danielle Cosme

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Sure, it may seem like a safe option to get home, but bicycling under the influence in Germany is far from safe. In addition to the obvious safety risks to yourself and others, if you're caught "drinking and riding" by a police officer, you can be fined huge sums (in some cases upwards of 1,000 Euros, depending on your income), and actually lose your driver's license! If you're apprehended with above 0.16% BAC, you have to undergo a psychological test and if you don't pass, then cruising on the autobahn is out of the question for you. Best advice: if you're drunk, ditch the bike and make use of the extremely efficient German public transportation.

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Culture Shock

Sundays = hungry days!

Bianca Walterspiel

26 Aug 2009

Germany

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Bianca Walterspiel

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In any little German town or village, Sunday is a very sleepy day. EVERYTHING is closed. Sundays are meant for sleeping in, having a mug of coffee and breakfast in bed, and enjoying the day with close family. Studying abroad, it was hard to get used to not being able to pick up a few groceries, or go out to a restaurant for food. Therefore, Sundays were often our hungry days. If you don't remember to go grocery shopping on a Saturday, you are pretty much screwed by the time Sunday rolls around ...

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Must Do

Turkish Market and Weihnachtsmarkt

Suzanne Wineke

02 Apr 2009

Germany

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Suzanne Wineke

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If you’re in Berlin, you must make sure you make it to the Turkish Market in Kreuzberg. Twice a week for several hours, the canal is lined with vendors selling scarves, shoes, produce, and delicious Turkish dips, spreads, olives, cheeses, and pastas—all at cheap prices. And if you’re in Germany during the Christmas season, you must take a trip to a Weihnachtsmarkt—huge outdoor Christmas markets with gifts, lights, music, and most importantly, Glühwein—a delicious spiced Christmas wine served hot, for only a couple Euros per cup.

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Etiquette

Don't ask people how they are doing

Robert Isenberg

23 Jun 2009

Germany

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Robert Isenberg

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In American English, we're always asking total strangers how they are. "How are you?" I'll say to the cashier. "Very well," she'll say. "And you?" But in Germany, this is a very unsettling question to ask a stranger. I've studied German, on and off, for over a decade, but no one ever warned me that Germans are puzzled by tourists' interest in their lives. "Guten Tag" is one thing, but "Wie geht es Ihnen?" (How are you?) is an alarmingly personal question. It's even worse if the question is informal: "Wie geht's?" ("How's it going?") is like turning to a complete stranger and asking, "Hi, how are your children doing in school?"

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Food

Try the cake with some conversation!

Nina Moog

21 Jun 2009

Germany

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Nina Moog

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As famous as England is for it's traditional tea, my favorite afternoon tradition is Germany's Kaffee und Kuchen (Coffee and Cake.) This tradition of gathering in a café with friends to converse over a large slice of cake is dwindling as new generations of Germans opt for healthier social activities. Despite the old-fashioned nature of this tradition, it is well worth it to make it to a café, settle down in a chair and order a large piece of cake alongside Germany's older citizens. Austria may be more well known for its pastries, with infamous cakes such as the Sachertorte, but Germany has much to offer- let's not forget Apfel Strudel, Schwarzwalder Kirsche, and Friesentorte!

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Film

Watch and learn about former East Germany

Audrey Bergner

16 Dec 2009

Germany

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Audrey Bergner

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Walking down the streets of Berlin, it’s difficult to imagine that up until 1989, a wall ran through the city dividing Germany into two nations: East Germany and West Germany. If you’re interested in seeing what life was like in socialist East Germany and how this changed after Germany’s reunification, the tragic-comedy, “Good Bye Lenin!” offers an accurate yet entertaining glimpse into the period.

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Slang

Don't be offended, he's really just trying to hit on you!

Danielle Cosme

03 Dec 2009

Germany

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Danielle Cosme

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I was once told "du bist eine geile Sau" at a bar, and then had to suffer through a friend trying to convince me that being called a "horny pig" was a good thing! Looks like even pick-up lines can get lost in translation. So, if you're looking for love, try to pick up on the slang, or if all else fails, just rely on good old-fashioned body language!

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Nightlife

Be a lone wolf (or a small pack)

Laurence Tooth

24 Jun 2009

Germany

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Laurence Tooth

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You don't have to invite all of your friends or roommates when you go out. A group of two or three is a good number if you want to find (and get into) some of the "cooler" bars and clubs in Berlin. While there isn't much of a door policy at most clubs here, a bouncer at Berghain or Watergate won't let a group of eight or ten Americans in all at once. Furthermore, you will find it easier to actually meet locals when you roll without the full entourage. (Plus, the story the next day will be much more interesting when your audience doesn't already know the ending!)

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