11:11pm: Too many wishes. I just got back from the Eröffnungsfest der Deutsche Oper, which was a big season opening party with many free performances. For the record, the sound of a brass instrument 'petting zoo' is universal. Going to concerts in Europe is in many ways such a different experience than in America. Tonight, I especially noticed the lack of air conditioning and the way people began to hustle to find a good seat twenty minutes before the performance began.
Earlier this week, I was able to visit Erkner, the small town on the outskirts of Berlin where I will be teaching. During my visit, I attended two staff meetings at the Carl Bechstein Gymnasium. I am very thankful that I will be experiencing life in both the big city and this small, quaint town.
Some things I already love about the Carl Bechstein Gymnasium:
1) NATURAL LIGHT Upon walking around I kept wondering why I felt so happy. Then, I realized I was not in a cave of fluorescent light.
2) STUDENT ARTWORK everywhere. The pieces are actually matted and framed throughout the halls. It gives the space a very, clean, gallery-esque feeling.
3) WELCOMING COLLEAGUES I felt at home right away. (And, I was asked 'Trump or Hillary' four times within the first hour)
And, natürlich, my next stop after getting oriented at the Gymnasium was to find a coffee shop nearby.