January 19, 2014: I’m Skipping the Obvious Czech Puns

So for this weekend as well as last I haven’t really gone anywhere spectacular for 2 main reasons.  The first being that I am trying to save up some money to go to an awesome sounding juggling convention at the end of February in a tropical oasis which lies somewhere in the middle of the sweltering cities of Dresden and Berlin, encased in a 26 degree paradise.  Yeah, I’m pretty pumped, I just hope I can get the money worked out.  The second reason I’ve been staying in Erlangen is that there have been/ are going to be several cultural events (read parties) hosted by some of my international friends.  This past weekend was Czech night, and this coming weekend will be Scottish night, but more on that next weekend.

But before detailing the fun times, I am going to talk about my ever so boring week.  My belly dancing class is back to meeting after the long break made even longer by the fact that January 6 happened to be a holiday in Bavaria, and so my class was deferred for a whole other week.  I really enjoy that class and even though it is on a Monday, it is easily the highlight of my school related week.  Despite the fact that Tuesday was miserable and rainy, I managed to make it to my evening class, even though it was pretty boring and I would have probably been okay overall skipping it.  Now Wednesday is where my plans of going to all of my classes (save the 8:15 one on Thursday that I’ve just decided I’m not going to make it to, period) sort of derailed.  I went to my Morphology class that morning and I have a decent break in between that and my Syntax class, so I decided to go to the grocery store.  I would like to say here, my bike was perfectly fine before going inside Kaufland, but once I got out and started to make my way home, something wasn’t right.

That’s when I realized my back tire was completely flat.  I have no idea what happened while I was shopping.  Maybe I ran over something in the parking lot, maybe it was just old, maybe some tire popping gnome decided to have a go at my bike, I don’t know.  I will say that the third option is significantly more fun to imagine, even though it is less than probable, so I’m going to go with that one instead.  So I spent the next 20-25 minutes limping my bike home with what I can only imagine was one of the sourest expressions my already bitchy resting face could muster (it probably rivaled the time I went through London Heathrow, although there is less documented proof of last Wednesday).  After getting back and making myself some lunch, I decided that I was just going to sit this Syntax class out.  The combination of several small annoyances compounded by the fact that I would either have to walk or take a bus to class just made me decide a nap was a much better idea.

On Thursday I decided it was time for me to man up and attempt to fix my back tire myself.  Armed with my meagerly equipped pink tool kit left to me by the previous occupant of my dorm and the experience of about 15 minutes worth of youtube DIY videos, I set out to nip this in the bud in hopes of making my 1:15 class.  I actually started by checking the valve, and it seemed like a piece was a bit loose, so I pumped up the tire again and tightened the valve.  I even took it on a test drive around the block.  Everything seemed to be in order and I could walk away proud of having fixed my bike on my own.  I went upstairs and ate a victory lunch (read a sandwich) and went back downstairs to head to class only to find that my tire was again, completely flat, foiled again by those deviant tire destroying gnomes.  It was at that point I gave up on going to class again and set out to try and fix my bike for good.

Unfortunately I still didn’t have all of the right equipment for the job, so I set off to find the key for the bike room in my dorm which has a lot of the tools one my use to fix a bike, as the name suggests.  Well, none of the key holders were at home it seemed, so I decided I would go ahead and take the back wheel off, that way if the threatening gray sky above decided to open up and drench both me and my bike I could retreat to the safety of my room and work on it there.  So 10 minutes go by with my bike turned upside down, back wheel still firmly attached to the frame and me standing there hopeless with my borrowed wrench in hand.  All of that youtube training I had endured laid with my tattered dreams of fixing my bike seeing as I did not even have the upper body strength to loosen a few lug nuts.  After washing up my manky hands I called a friend who then proceeded to do everything within about 15 minutes.

Much of the rest of my day/week was pretty uneventful.  I did a bit of hooping and I also somehow managed to get in some reading for my comps, which loom ever nearer.  Friday I met up with some friends and we went to Dunkin’ Doughnuts and chatted for a decent portion of the afternoon.  I had a giant cup of coffee so I was pretty jazzed the rest of the day.  That night I went to Czech night, which was both a cultural experience as well as a party.  It was a bit more of one than the other, I’ll let you decide which one ultimately trumped the other.  But there was some Czech food and booze.  I am not 100% sure what the food was, but there was sauerkraut and some sort of tasty dumpling with bacon inside.  There were also plenty of non-Czech snacks people could munch on.  I think one of my favorite parts was learning a Czech dance.  It wasn’t terribly difficult in theory, but if you get a bunch of somewhat drunk people dancing what I can only describe as a fast paced shuffling waltz on a tiny dance floor… Well, let’s just I would have probably been better off standing on my partner’s feet.

It was nice though to get to see so many people I hadn’t gotten a chance to see since before the break.  I need to make a bit more of an effort to hang out with some of these folks.  I also got to meet some new people and although I feel like there was a bit of drama going on between various people, I managed to have a hell of a good time.  The best part of all of this was the fact that the next morning I did not wake up hungover and I still got to enjoy a beautiful almost spring-like day.  I won’t go into too much detail, but there was a bit of juggling and piano playing involved.  It was just a really nice Saturday.

As far as Sunday goes, I somehow managed to sleep until 11.  But upon seeing what a glorious day it was yet again, it seemed that a bit of hooping/juggling in the Schlosspark was in order.  We ended up drawing quite a bit of attention from the passers-by, which was nice, but sometimes the extra attention makes me a bit more nervous and more prone to messing up.  I think there are going to be some pictures/videos (?) of Sunday on facebook because some friends happened to be in the park as well and they were snapping away as we practiced.  We shall see in due time I suppose and if there are any good ones I happen upon I will post them.  And to top off an already superb weekend, I had a girls night with two of my friends which included more Belgian chocolate, raspberry glühwein, some sort of tasty Belgian alcohol, and a sappy movie (The Lakehouse in this case.)  So all in all it was a nice, mostly laid back weekend, but I really enjoyed it I must say.  So until I get a hold of some pictures from this weekend!

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