Tuesday, July 23, 2013

School is Out!

So, the past few weeks since my last update were dedicated to school work and getting finished with homework and classes. I can't believe how fast it went; soon enough, all of my presentations and papers were finished and my final test was over. It was a bit of a bittersweet feeling getting done with all of my assignments. I wrote my, possibly, last papers for college, at least for my undergraduate degrees anyway, and then attended the last week of class. After class on my last day, I was really in quite a shock; I couldn't believe 17 years of going to class had just ended! And, to be completely honest, I don't know if it has set in quite yet either... But, I am proud of my accomplishments and overall, I am excited to be done and looking forward to seeing what my future holds for me!

Last day of School!

After our classes were finished, all of the exchange students decided to throw a going away party since soon everyone will either be traveling around Europe or heading home to their own countries. A few of us got together early and prepared a Mexican feast as well as brownies and cupcakes for the whole group. It was a great time; everyone was able to come and we were all able to celebrate being together one last time! Our entire group consisted of students from all over the place! There are of course the Americans: 6 of us from good ol' Colorado, 2 from North Carolina, 1 from South Carolina, 1 from Arizona, 1 from Michigan and 1 from Wisconsin. Then their are the students from all around Europe: 2 from Poland, 1 from Ireland and 1 from England. And last but not least, 1 student in our study abroad group is from Hong Kong! Everyone brought something different to the group and I think it is safe to say that we have all made some wonderful friends from all over the world! After we all enjoyed dinner, which was complete with an awards ceremony of the "best" and "most likely to" awards, we enjoyed dessert and each others' company, then we said our goodbyes! I do hope that someday I will be able to see many of these new friends again!

Study Abroad Students Karlsruhe, Germany 2013

As I said, the past few weeks have been pretty basic with finishing up classes and such. Myself and a few friends have been able to walk around the city a bit more as well as spend evenings out in the Schlosspark, which is always wonderful! Also, to celebrate school being over, a friend and I had a date with The Duke and watched some John Wayne movies and enjoyed a pizza, or two! It was great to have someone who likes to watch John Wayne movies with, but it also made me really excited to get back home and watch them with my favorite John Wayne movie partner, my Dad! And, after a few days of relaxation, I plan on heading out once again for some traveling around Germany and Europe! I hope to see many more things while on my adventure abroad and I also hope to visit some extended family here in Europe! I really can't believe how fast time has gone and in just about two months from now I will be returning home!

The Duke and Pizza!!!

Hot Air Balloon in the Park!


Saturday, July 6, 2013

Finally, a Bit of Time to Relax!

The past few weeks in Germany have been pretty calm. There haven't been any long trips to far away and exciting places; so, it was nice to just relax for a bit. I have had lots of homework and stuff for school to catch up on since the semester is ending shortly. Only two more weeks of classes-I can't believe it! Two more weeks and I'll be done with my undergraduate college degree! Time really does go by too fast... But anyways, as I said, I have been catching up on lots of school work and working on writing my final papers. Right now I am in the process of writing my last paper for college ever and it is actually rather bittersweet. I am actually enjoying writing this one and I am both sad and excited that it will be my last. It will hopefully end up being the perfect last paper as well seeing as how it is turning out to be rather long and it is on my favorite book of all time, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. So far, it is everything I would want my last paper of college to be and I hope it turns out that way. Besides working on homework and school work, the weather has been wonderful here in Germany, for the most part, over the past few weeks. I have been able to get outside for a run everyday and enjoy the Schlosspark and the city a bit. This last week has been a bit more busy than the others with lots of assignments due, the 4th of July and then a scholarship fest at the Bodensee.

I found a giant snail along one of my runs!

Along a run one afternoon we were caught it a downpour...

And then, naturally, I wanted to jump in the puddles!

This is my favorite run destination a few miles away...and
on this day it looked beautiful in the sunshine!

To begin, the 4th of July was on Thursday and after class and homework was taken care of, we all decided to have a giant celebration complete with BBQ foods and S'mores! The weather was great and the party, which we held on the roof of one of the dorm buildings, was a huge success. Myself and the rest of the Americans were able to feel just about at home with so many homemade, American classic dishes and the Germans were able to get a little taste of America as well. The night ended with S'mores and fireworks, just like any other 4th of July would.

Party food all set up!


A new German buddy and myself celebrating on the 4th of July

Some very excited Americans!

Three Americans and a Brit :)


The next day was an early rise for most of us as we had to travel down to the Bodensee, or Lake Constance, for an annual scholarship fest offered by our scholarship foundation here in Germany. The weather was beautiful and the lake was a sight to see once again. The only down part to the day/evening was that we all were attacked by bugs and mosquitos on the Island Mainau, where the fest was being held, and bug spray was no where to be found... So, 32 bug bites and a long day later, I finally made it back to my dorm in Karlsruhe. Now, once again I am ready for some relaxing time and it will hopefully come in the next few weeks as school comes to a close.

A picture in the same exact place as last summer...
only blonde this time :)

There were so many beautiful flowers!

Stair fountain at Insel Mainau

Garden at Insel Mainau

Good friends and flowers!

My favorites!

I am looking forward to classes being over and then hopefully getting to travel around Germany before heading to Africa for three weeks and then finally, I will head back to the States and back home! In some ways, time has been going very slowly and I really realize just how long being away from home for 7 months (in total) really is. But, at the same time, my time here has really flown by and it is crazy to think I have been here for as long as I have been. I am looking forward to seeing all of my family and friends when I return, yet, until then I am still counting on Germany to provide many happy memories for me in the next few months!