Travel nerves & exploring Berlin

The most stressful part of traveling was saying goodbye to my parents. Once I stepped through the airport security checkpoint, then I knew I was on my own. That thought was both liberating and scary, for obvious reasons. At the moment, however, I was only thinking about the millions of possibilities that could go wrong like getting lost in a foreign city or being targeted by terrorists. Despite weeks of preparation, I did not feel ready.

The actual travel was pretty uneventful. I couldn’t sleep on my 10.5 hour flight from LAX to Düsseldorf, so I ended up watching four movies in a row while sipping on some free airport wine. I passed out from exhaustion on my next flight to Berlin. When I woke up, the sun was just setting, casting for me the perfect welcome image to start my journey.

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My first look at Berlin

My taxi driver spoke only broken English, but he pointed out some cool landmarks on the way to my host family’s apartment. I feel really blessed to be assigned to my host family. My host mom is the sweetest and most helpful lady. She also has a 13 year old son and a dog named Spike, who recently had an operation so he’s stuck currently with a cone around his head. I was very excited to learn that they were huge Walking Dead fans too! It was definitely a bonding moment for all of us.

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If he looks sad, it’s just because he wants food.

The next day, I met with some of the interns from my language course. Together, we explored downtown Berlin. We went to the Menschen Museum, a real human body exhibit, and also the Carnival of the Cultures. A lot of the preserved bodies at the museum had mohawks, so I’m guessing mohawks are pretty big in Berlin. Tomorrow, I will be starting my first day of language school.

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Menschen Museum and Fernsehturm TV-Tower

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Karneval der Kulturen or “Carnival of the Cultures”

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Lángos, a Hungarian food specialty

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There was a meditative trance going on inside this church

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