Friday, December 10, 2010


Despite the fact that I woke up extremely late, fell flat on my a** on a patch of ice outside my door, and missed a tram causing me to be late for lunch with my lovely friend Marina, I couldn't help but feel incredibly joyful today. Maybe it was waking up to the sun shining high in the sky, or maybe it was the Christmas spirit in the air, maybe just feeling full of God's love... I don't know but I had a smile plastered to my face all day. This happens to me sometimes, just this feeling of pure joy out of absolutely nowhere, on completely mundane, random days where nothing special is going on, and I'm so thankful for it. Riding the bus down to the Karli, I had a perpetual grin on my lips, and this bubbly butterfly feeling in my belly, not out of nervousness but sheer happiness. On more than one occasion on that bus ride the thought "I love Germany" crossed my mind... and after that... "Maybe I never want to leave here."

Outside my window... the sun!

To be honest, the thought of living in Europe for the rest of my life is immensely appealing to me. It's something I'm pretty serious about, and the only things holding me back are my lack of a diploma (one more semester at home!) and the difficulty I might find in seeking employment here. I could definitely find work teaching English, so I'm not totally out of options, but that would pretty much negate my entire course of studies so far, which have focused on teaching visual arts.

Then of course, there's the fact that I would miss my family and friends so much. Obviously I've made many friends here in Leipzig and around Europe already, but it's not the same as the people back home, especially the ones I've spent my entire life with.

Anyway, there's time to figure things like that out. In the meantime, so far today was an exceptionally good day.

I met my Spanish friend Marina at Cafe Pushkin on the Karli, and ate a delicious apple pancake with cinnamon sugar for brunch, along with the required cup of black coffee. Man, if there's one thing I miss about home it's free coffee refills at restaurants. That does not exist here.

I had only been to Cafe Pushkin once before, and we sat outside so I didn't realize what a lovely cafe it is. Inside the walls are painted a warm, dull gold, the furniture is cozy and mismatched, everything has a comfortable, worn-in hominess and interesting art hangs on the walls. The food was delicious and relatively cheap. I definitely plan on returning and I'll be sure to take my guests from back home there when they come.

Marina's "sweet student" breakfast; single serve Nutella- cutest thing I've ever seen!

build-it-yourself breakfast

apple cinnamon pancake!

adorable menus

Pushkin decor

On the way home I was able to snap a bunch of shots, although by then the sun was blocked by the clouds so the beautiful glint of sun on snow from the earlier afternoon had turned to a dull gray.

An der Karli

Karl Leibkneckt Straße


I was probably trespassing to get this photo...

If I ever buy myself a guitar, it will be that minty color.

Love that little bus parked between the trees!

at the bus stop

Near my neighborhood

Phone box



Tonight is the Christmas party that I'm attending with Elli and Tracy and possibly Marina. Should be loads of fun. The bottle of Reisling I bought today at Norma pretty much ensures that.


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Es Weihnachtet Sehr.

Winter hibernation has begun. Lately the pattern has been; wake up (at the last possible second,) go to school, come home, make tea, snuggle under the covers and immerse myself in internet. I've taken a break with the whole "I'm in Europe, I'll sleep when I'm dead" business and started wanting to constantly be in jammies, wrapped in blankets and drinking hot beverages. 

Which isn't to say I haven't been doing anything at all. In fact, the past week was pretty eventful and the upcoming weekend looks to be more of the same. 

Elli coerced me out of the house last week with the promise of hot glühwein and Weihnachten treats. We nommed on pommes mit majo and had a nice little spaziergang. The Christmas Market is in full swing, and it spreads all through the city center. Unfortunately I didn't get too many shots, due to the premature death of my camera's battery.

As evidenced from the photos below, Christmas (Wiehnacht) is NOT TAKEN LIGHTLY in Germany. IT'S A BIG FREAKING DEAL.


The tops of the Finnish Weihnachts Markt Tee Pee's are peeking up at the bottom of this shot

Just this past Monday Elli took me to see a Berlin-based electro-pop duo called I'm not a Band. The group consists of a boy and a girl and their electric violins. That's right, they BOTH play electric violin. Echt super. Here's a link to a clip of Monday's show at Werk II.

It's getting late and I actually need to get some sleep, I'm getting up early tomorrow. My friend Miri is going with me to the Auslandsamt in the morning to help me try to get an extension on my visa application, which needs to be done because otherwise I'm going to be illegal in two days! Ooops. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Being that it's 1:25AM and I have yet to settle into sleep, I decided to peek beyond my most-likely-Ikea curtains and out the window. What I saw, to my complete lack of astonishment, was... SNOW. Still more snow. I don't think it's stopped since it started the day after Thanksgiving.  Naturally, I grabbed my camera.

Brezlauer Straße, 1:00,  zweite Dezember 2010 
I'm thankful for the quiet beauty the snow projects onto everything it touches. As of right now, deep in the still of night, it's untouched, sparkling in the orange gleam of street lamps. I know when I wake up in the morning (ok, who am I trying to kid?) When I wake up in the afternoon, the magic will have all but gone, snow shoveled up to reveal black tar sidewalks, car tracks brown in the street. But for now I have this diamond glow, and the hush the insulation of snow casts on the street, dampening all the sounds I would expect to hear.

My Jack'o'Lantern's rotted remains.