We put them in rest homes, we kinda kick them under the rug and make believe they don't exist. They [the people in Vienna] don't feel like that. In a lot of these older places in the world, they value their older people and their older people feel they can still be a part of the community and I thought: This is a terrific idea - that old people are useful -and that means I don't have to worry so much about getting old because I can still have a use in this world in my old age. I thought "Vienna waits for you..."

-Billy Joel

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

No Shave Nowember: I'm in Europe...Why Not?

I realized today that as far as blogging is concerned, I’m almost getting too caught up in recording my travels to other countries on the weekends that I am failing to talk about how spectacular Vienna itself is! And I feel like my blog is boring with nothing but pictures. 

Johann Strauss in Stadtpark

First of all, I love this place. There is SO much to do…and so little time. I made a Vienna to-do list with only 3 weeks left here..man I need to get crackin!!! Some things on my list are: Ice Skate in front of the Rathaus (City Hall), go to a mass at one of the beautiful churches here, eat chestnuts roasting on an open fire, go to all the Christmas Markets (there’s a TON), learn to make the best schnitzel ever, and go to about 10 more museums. And trust me that’s probably a third of my list.

The Christmas Markets are starting to open. Let me just say…that I was probably the happiest girl EVER when I went to the first one last night. It was UN. REAL. Lights everywhere, yummy hot “Punsch”, and I hear the other Christmas Markets just make it better and better…

I LOVE everyone I have met here in Austria. This includes: one, everyone on the study abroad trip. It’s a blessing that I came here before going to BYU because I have made friends that I know will be some of my best friends during the rest of my college career. And two, everyone at Institute! Sometimes we’ll be hanging out with them or they’ll be showing us another cool thing about Vienna and I just think… “Am I really hanging out with these attractive European men right now?” Heck yeah I am. And the girls, they are all so sweet. LOVE THEM ALL! I often think about how sad it will be leaving all of them...I will definitely have to be better at keeping in touch than I am right now!

One of our classes is called Experiencing Vienna. This has been fun because for class we just go out and find an adventure in the city. Then, we write about it. And bam! That’s it. It’s just great. We’ve gone on bike rides, gone on paddle boats, climbed the church towers to see beautiful views, and much more! J

With 3 weeks left I realize how much I have learned (and am still learning) here. I think I have finally grasped the concept that I can learn…just for the sake of learning. Not because I have to, but because I want to! Learning is great. J I have a long list of things I want to learn when I get home. Oh boy.

Learning German is…
A kick.
A doosey.
& FUN!
I really love learning it. I was doing pretty well at understanding and communicating until we went over the rest of the cases this week in class. Have mercy.
It will get easier…someday Ali, someday! Fluency will be achieved…you watch!

At Zentralfriedhof Cemetery. Beethoven!

 Roommate LOVE baby!

Reading Mormonism in Germany on the subway...could I look any more conspicuous?


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