Into the Schwarzwald

6/11/2016

You know that moment when you’re traveling with a group, and then you turn around and find your group isn’t there anymore? Well, that happened to me on Saturday afternoon. My newfound friends (mainly other German students from U of M, and one girl’s hallmate) had spent the morning on an ICE train from Mannheim, and the lunch hour doing—what else?—eating lunch.

Anytime there’s pesto, you can believe that’s what I’m going to order… :)

Anytime there’s pesto, you can believe that’s what I’m going to order… 🙂

After that, we strolled through the Augustinermuseum, where we saw some absolutely beautiful works by a Dutch painter who worked in the 1800s.

They. Were. AMAZING.

They. Were. AMAZING.

A little later, while I was busy and distracted with reading a sign in some really tough German…

A little later, while I was busy and distracted with reading a sign in some really tough German…

My friends ditched me! Can you believe it?

To be honest, though, I wasn’t too disappointed to suddenly find myself alone. There’s something quite nice about traveling by yourself—in a big city, in a small town, whatever.

You get to take your time,

You get to take your time…

...to stroll...

…to stroll…

...and you see things you might not have found otherwise.

…and you see things you might not have found otherwise.

Not sure what my friends got up to all afternoon—quite possibly, they spent the time looking for me—but I passed the afternoon in the lovely University library, right next door to the city’s theater and, like, ice cream. Don’t worry, I restrained myself…

The library was rewarding enough!

The library was rewarding enough!

Xoxo,

Susan

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Adventure, Adventure

6/8/2015

Something that I’ve wanted to do since arriving in Germany has been to dance Nia. Just one time would be enough, I figured, but I had to make it happen. Today, after a lot of late-night Internet searching and planning on Google Maps, I decided to go for it—there appeared to be TWO Nia classes on Wednesday afternoons in Karlsruhe, and it’s not all that far away…

Right?

Right?

The train ride went smoothly, and the city was quite beautiful—but, unfortunately for me, there was no one at the Dojo when I arrived. After some more Internet searching, I learned that the 4:15 class doesn’t start until September! This discovery prompted further exploration of the city, since I had nothing else to do until 6pm, when the next Nia session was supposed to take place. But it wasn’t all bad—I saw a lot of pretty buildings, spent some time in the public library, and strolled through a really lovely city park!

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Turns out what I’d hoped was an afternoon Nia session was actually a 90-minute “yoga” class, but one that involved a lot of deep breathing and slow, gentle movements. On the dark blue mats of the studio, in the soft glow of pink salt-crystal lamps, with birds singing outside and rain pouring down onto green leaves, I spent a couple of the most relaxing hours I think I’ve had since coming to Europe. All in all, the adventure was totally worth it!

I’m still determined to find some Nia, though.

I’m still determined to find some Nia, though.

Xoxo,

Susan