So E lives in Erzhausen, a small town by Frankfurt. I was given the directions to take the S3 to Erzhausen. Unfortunately, little did I know that the S3 did not connect to the airport. Ok, I can do this. I went to the travel agency and asked for the way. My first time speaking German in a long time… totally butchered – they guy just spoke to me in English. I was given specific instructions to get off of the S8 at the main station or Frankfurt Hbf, walk to the other side and take the S3 to Erzhausen.
Mistake #1 getting off of the first train too early.
There was a sign that said Frankfurt am (main) … something … so I thought that was it… but it was not quite. Apparently several stops begin with Frankfurt am main, but the one I was looking for was specifically Frankfurt Hbf. But I got off am main and was thoroughly confused when I couldn’t find the train I was looking to connect to. I took some pictures of this place, but I can’t seem to find them 😦 Anyway, it was relatively deserted (not what I would think the main station may look like) and small.
Mistake #2, trying to ask for directions in German to someone who didn’t look overwhelmingly friendly. Finally I built up all my courage and went up to someone in my best German. I said excuse me – immediately the lady spurted something and walked away. What a shot to my confidence. But… hey I didn’t want to be lost in Germany forever. So I built up more courage and walked up to someone else. This lady spoke English and clearly didn’t want to wait for me to fight through butchering die Deutsche sprache. She directed me in the right way and I was off.
Riding the train was super fun. Everything outside is so beautiful and green. Everything here definitely feels different than America, which as not what I had expected. From my memories in the past, the cities all seemed like America, just maybe slightly different buildings… maybe like another American city… but no, this is different.
Something I did notice was this feeling of really sticking out for the first time in my life. I’ve been to camps and other places before where I was like 1 of about… 1 Asian before… but I never felt like I stuck out. For some reason this feels different…
1) On the train ride (approx. 20 minutes) I saw 3 Asians… they were all girls.
2) I have all these urges to take pictures of things, which would really make me stick out.
3) I’m obviously a traveler carrying a big backpack and a bag.
4) I look extremely young comparatively because of my Asian bone structure.
5) I’m carrying around a little Pooh Bear and a hello kitty water bottle.
Later on my way back to the airport I was waiting to transfer trains. A little German kid was standing a little distance in front of me with his mom. He saw me and started pointing and looking a little amazed. I had a feeling I might be one of the few Asians he’s ever seen. It’s kind of like on our China tour where all the Chinese people wanted to take a picture with the blond kid in our group.
Anyway… something cool I noticed was the way their train doors worked. Instead of opening all doors at every stop, one must give a little tug at the handles or press a button to open a select door and only that door. Good system.
When I got to Erzhausen it was a much smaller town than I had imagined. The school was pretty much across the street. On one side of the railroad tracks was the town and on the other side was a forest.
To my happy surprise, the school is a seminary! I’m currently sitting in on Systematic Theology auf Deutsch in Berӧa Theologie Seminar. Too bad I can’t understand much. I almost wish I took my classes first before coming here so that I would be able to speak and understand more D:
I get to stay in a room by myself that can hold up to 4 guests and it only costs 13 Euro a night 😀 It’s a little lonely, but quite nice.
I’ve already met a lot of wonderful people. Eileen is a pretty outgoing/ popular person around these parts so I’ve quickly gotten to meet a lot of the students. Slowly slowly my German is beginning to return to me. I could understand some of the class and passing conversations.
For dinner Eileen and her boyfriend cooked me a delicious Korean meal. We ate with two of their friends – also a couple. I guess I was like a 5th wheel haha. I was able to practice my German a bit since Eileen’s boyfriend and the other girl don’t know much English.
It’s interesting that there seems to be a lot of couples here. Some of them are already engaged and Eileen’s roommate is getting married next month! It’s quite interesting to get to see how German couples interact. It might better be compared to the Asian culture than the American culture, but I noticed that the couples here are a lot more expressive in their love both in words and in actions. Ya… there’s a lot more hugging, kissing, holding hands, sitting on laps, and spending lots of time together, than I usually see around me at home. They all use very loving terms calling each other our equivalent of darling or sweetheart all the time. They cook and eat almost every meal together… in fact all except one couple I always saw the couples together. I asked that one couple why that was (sort of?) and she said it was so that they wouldn’t be distracted from their studies since they were at school. They were the ones who were getting married soon.
Anyway, the school is quite cute. Everything fits in one building – the classrooms, the teacher and student’s rooms, the student and teacher kitchens, the chapel, etc. They sell food in the school and its all on an honors system in terms of paying. It’s a good thing they do too. I went walking around the city later and there weren’t really restaurants or stores close by. I heard that there was a market, but I never found it haha… of course I was too afraid to turn on any streets since I could have gotten lost and had no one to call after Eileen left for her missions trip.
At night I got to talk to Eileen a little bit and hear about how she had decided to even come to Germany. We were also able to share with each other our heart for missions and the need we saw for God in the areas that were in (Germany and America).
I also got to talk to her briefly about relationships – I’ll keep that information out since it’s a little personal on both sides.
So many exciting things are happening here in Germany!!! Sleep time 🙂
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