Bachelor??

My friend has gotten me stuck on watching the shows “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette”.

It isn’t that we actually are all that into them… – I don’t even watch television or television shows or anything anymore (including all of the streamed shows and whatnot [which I have to say, because people tell me all the time how they don’t watch tv anymore either, because they just do Netflix and Hulu and such…]) – more so that it is fun to have a weekly date night in place, during which we get to see beautiful places, see others’ opinions, and consider our own opinions on various topics we perhaps hadn’t considered or, at least, discussed with one another (or, even, others).

The last I had seen the show before this year, they all just spent the whole time in one location.

Nowadays, however, they travel the world.

Upon discovering that, I commented that I wanted to go on the show.

It was a sort of joke at first, more interested in the travel than anything else.

Tonight, however, months later, we got to talking about it in a rather serious way: Do I perhaps actually want to go on the show?

If so, now is the time to apply, we both agreed.

And so, I looked at the application online, and am genuinely considering whether I want to apply for it… it seems simultaneously absurd and a wonderful adventure for me to make… and both sound rather intriguing, to say the least.

“Why do you want to go on ‘The Bachelor’?”

That is my question to consider and to answer in the coming days… if the answer is worth it, I’ll fill it in on the application and submit… if it isn’t to me, then I will close the application… either way, I will feel and be satisfied with my determined path, and I will be delighted for what life has to offer next. πŸ™‚

πŸ˜›

Post-a-day 2019

Grandparenting

We’re staying at my aunt and uncle’s house tonight (though they are out of town), and I found myself noticing how baby-oriented everything here seems to be now.

No daughters living in their individual rooms, no young nieces and nephews and adult siblings and parents coming to visit all the time anymore… just their daughters visiting occasionally with their babies and tiny children.

And then I realized that a lot of their traveling is either to visit the out-of-town grandchildren or to go on vacation with the daughters and grandchildren.

And so, essentially, their lives focus greatly around their grandchildren (they’re retired, you see…. my aunt and uncle…, so they don’t do other work.)… they do house edits on their various (three) houses, and rotate between them all reasonably regularly, and then they vacation (aka grandchildren).

How interesting that must be.

How wonderful that must be… to be able to focus as much time and effort as you want on the grandchildren, and to help your children with them all you want…

Perhaps that is one of the goals people have in life – live well enough and work well enough to be free and available for your children and their children, once the grandchildren come around.

And they do it while living quite well, too… not bad at all…

Yes… perhaps this can be a sort of goal for me, too… work hard, so the kids can have everything beneficial and lovely in their lives, and so they end up pursuing the same for their children, and then be super active and available in the lives of their children while they do the hard work like you did…

It somehow seems unbalanced or unfair or, at least, like it could be done way better… but I haven’t a better solution at the moment, so I’ll keep it in mind and think on it a while in the coming day and weeks and, possibly, years…

Hmm…

Post-a-day 2019

German Rank

By the time I arrived in Germany for my summer of German language courses as a precursor to my Fall/Winter study abroad semester, I had done the whole foreign language study and foreign language immersion thing a couple of times already – I knew what I was getting into and how I wanted to go about it.

True fluency was my goal, and I knew how to manage that.

The day I arrived, however, my German was absurdly limited and rather laughable…. I could hardly ask questions, let alone understand the answers (more on that some other time).

And so, by the time I was visiting with the others in my program’s group (they had also arrived that day), and had met the head of my program, everyone had been socially established in terms of their levels of German ability.

One girl was ‘the head’ of the group, so to speak, another was ‘the absolute beginner’, and the other few were sprinkled in between them… I openly declared my poor abilities that had been used throughout the day, only somewhat successfully, and expressed concern of not placing high enough to receive credit for the German courses back at my college (you had to be at least in the second level for the courses to count, and I was worried that I might be ending up in the beginner, first level, based in the day’s events).

In other words, I was ranked ever so slightly above the absolute beginner girl, and just barely below the girl who’d studied for a few semesters already (two years, I think, actually).

However, I wasted no time in immersing myself with the German-speaking head of our program, and got help from her immediately for the things I knew I would need and want to say starting the next day, when I would be interacting with all the people at the school and taking a placement test and starting classes… again, I had done the foreign language thing before, and I was knowledgeable about how to function on minimal vocabulary and grammar – I could make anything work, so long as I had a certain set of vocabulary ahead of time.

And so, to my delight the next morning, what I had prepared myself to be able to share with others about my absurd travels getting to that small town in Germany, ended up being the essay question on the placement test!

Therefore, to my pleasure and total surprise, I was placed in none of the beginner level courses, but in the first of two intermediate courses!

Since I had arrived late the day before (again with the telling another time), I had missed the regular times for the placement tests, and everyone who had taken them then was already in the first day of classes while I took my own placement test (along with a few other people who weren’t in my program, but who were also studying at the language school that month).

Therefore, when I walked into my intermediate level class – this was after multiple verifications that they were sure they were putting me into the correct class – and I found ‘the head’ of our group sitting at one of the tables, there was a brief moment of shock for the both of us, as I blew apart the ranking of our whole group by jumping rank so obscenely (I use obscene, because it rather was obscene, in a sense).

She was not happy, to say the least.

Two weeks later, when I already matched and, in some areas, had surpassed her German capabilities, I had voluntarily removed myself from the ranking altogether.

Rather than be a part of the group so much, I had become ‘the outside associated’, someone who isn’t truly a part of the group, but who comes to visit and gets along well with everyone whenever she does.

I never spoke English after that first day, not once… and that was enough to set me away from the group hierarchy.

(Okay, I did speak English once… this British guy seemed like he was about to cry one day, while begging me to speak English, because he so desperately wanted to hear how I sounded in English, since he had known me for weeks but had heard none…, but that was genuinely the only time I did it while there.)*

And it was wonderful.

In the second month, we had a similar situation happen with the new group arriving and joining our ranks… everyone was re-ranked, with me still as an outside associate for the first round of people, but ranked in a real place by the new folks (just above ‘the head’ from the first month)…

For that month, I was ranked below a new ‘head’… however, a month or so later, when we had all moved to Vienna, Austria, I was fully removed from the ranking system by all the new people, too… I had real friends who were native German-speakers, and certain parts of my German were better than anyone else (not all parts, though, because five years does teach one a lot, so the new ‘head’ definitely had some knowledge on German that I never really intended to have)… and I still used no English.

However, I eventually started throwing in the occasional bit of English just so they wouldn’t hate me so much – speaking only German had kind of pushed me way off the ranks… almost no association at all anymore…, but I got rather pushed back out by some when they discovered my many friendships with non-foreigners….

So, yeah… essentially, I ended up a distanced associate, and that actually was really great for me… I was there to learn German and learn German-speaking culture, not American anything (which was mostly all that my group had to offer), so I did just that: I learned German and German-speaking culture by being a part of it.

And it was awesome.

And I still found the hierarchy of our group to be hilarious, especially when I blew a hole in parts of it again and again. πŸ˜›

That was rather fun, actually.

I wonder how I would have felt had I been a regular member of the hierarchy, and not the super-gifted member that I was… hmm…

Post-a-day 2019

*Something tells me that I might have used the occasional translation with the outright beginner girl for the first few weeks while she got her bearings, but we kept that rather hush-hush and between ourselves, so no one really heard or knew about my occasional English words to her.

I had the best day with you today

Some of the best days are the ones where you not only don’t pull out your phone, but you don’t even realize that you aren’t pulling it out… you come across it in your bag, say, near the end of the night, and you think, Oh, hello, phone… Haven’t seen you all day!, and then you continue on just as before, without doing anything but leaving the phone where it already has been hanging out all day.

Yep… some of the best days are like that… like today… πŸ™‚

Though, just as Pooh and Piglet always share, I suppose that every day is not only like today, but it is today… “My favorite,” he always says… πŸ™‚

Post-a-day 2019

Nursery rhymes

I probably could use a good one right now…

There was an old woman who swallowed a fly, but I don’t know why she swallowed the fly…

But I do… she probably had something die in the walls of her house, and the blood flies appeared one morning outing seemingly nowhere, and she was bombarded by them only hours later as she hung up the fly paper strands from the ceiling, because they had quadrupled since that morning, and so she was crying and crying and packing a bag quickly so she could leave and stay elsewhere while the fly papers did their work (she hoped, anyway), and, as she wondered how the hidden dead creature would be found at the end of the week (that was just beginning) when the exterminator came for their long visit, when it was only Sunday currently, and she slipped on her hurried and panicked way down the stairs, carrying her hurriedly-packed bag and other necessary items for the week, and, as she called out in her slip, a fly ran into her open, inhaling mouth…

Or something like that…

I mean, it’s just an idea… no reason for that particular scenario to have come to mind… no reason at all… except for what happened today, of course…. so glad the last bit actually didn’t happen…, but I could totally see it as having been a horrible top-off for the whole miserable part of the day…., but I’m glad it didn’t.

Post-a-day 2019

At the close of a rough day…

What are you doing right now?

Can I play ukulele to you?

I’m feeling a bit lonesome and useless, and that would be a quality purpose

I considered guitar, but the strings really need to be replaced :/

Those were the messages I sent.

And then she called me…, and I played ukulele and sang to her, and we talked a bit afterward about some things, and it was great.

My mission was accomplished, and I felt so much more at ease than beforehand… service given, art made, purpose felt, love shared.

Friends are wonderful, even when they are all the way across the country.

πŸ™‚

P.S. I spoke briefly with a friend in D.C. earlier, and then this one in Oregon tonight… I really do span the country with my closest friends… it’s almost as though one must live farther away in order to deepen our friendship more. πŸ˜›

Post-a-day 2019