Friday, September 02, 2005

The Duvet Burrito

I haven’t written in a couple days, but I will try to keep this somewhat short (what a responsibility blogging is!)

Wednesday’s orientation highlight was the German History Museum (Haus der Geschichte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland.) The museum does a wonderful job of telling the story of Germany after WWII (from the perspective of the East and the West as well as after reunification.) I am definitely going back this weekend to see all of the exhibits again! My only criticism was that our guide spoke about Americans and Italians helping to rebuild Germany and the cultural things that they brought with them (ie. Elvis Presley and gelato) but there was no mention of the Turks. Can you say Doner Kebab (gyros)!! There is a Doner stand on every other block— maybe the Starbucks of Germany! If the Doner stands and the ice cream stores were closed on Sundays people might die of hunger (or at least the Americans who forget to grocery shop on Saturdays would!)

Thursday’s highlight was dinner and a ragtime piano concert at the American consul-general’s house in Düsseldorf. Why America has a consulate in Düsseldorf I am not sure, but it was a great evening. Doritos and salsa and veggies and ranch dip as well as Country Time lemonade were served as appetizers (no joke). The Russians were a bit confused by the food choice, but seemed to like it in the end. Brent Youens performed the music. He did a great job of explaining the history behind the music and was very animated. The Russians and the Germans in the crowd seemed to enjoy themselves (score one public diplomacy point for the State Department!)

Still no spaetzle, but maybe I will make some for myself and watch the election debate between Schroeder and Merkel on Sunday evening (spaetzle and Germans intensely debating the issues of the day—what could be more German!) I am happy to report that I had my first pizza on Wednesday (pizza in Germany tastes different). It is still to warm for a delicious piece of apple strudel with vanilla sauce but I think fall is just around the corner.

Erin’s good news of the day:
I think I have perfected the European duvet “burrito.” For those who are unaware, Germans don’t sleep with a top sheet, but instead sleep with a duvet. Though this is disconcerting to some Americans (like my dad who travels with his own top sheet when he comes to Europe), I love them!

Unfortunately, in Freiburg I could never figure out how I was supposed to fold the duvet to “make” my bed in the morning. But now I’ve got it… you fold it like a burrito (the two sides in towards the center) and then turn it 90 degrees! If I learn nothing else this year, I can at least return to the States with this fine accomplishment☺)


At 11:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to say - but the Turkish guestworker policy has not been totally embraced by the German imagination. Perhaps because the guest workers were not supposed to leave any cultural influences, after all, but were expected to return as fast as they came. In any case, it should be good news that Germany is slowly owning up to the Turkish presence: i.e check out Turkish-German Ms. Germany this year!

At 11:51 AM, Anonymous Tanya said...

Erin, I love reading your posts! You've coined a great term: duvet burrito. I grew up sleeping under both a top sheet and a duvet/quilt (Federdecke in winter), and still to this day. My German mother insists on the top sheet to save on washing of the duvet cover!

At 7:35 AM, Anonymous The Exit said...

In Berlin, the Doner are open all night (at least some) and even on sundays.

I think, when you come over to Berlin, I will cook for you Kässpätzle!


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