A Monday

I slept in late today. I Skyped with my parents. I called my grandma. I Googled for job ads. I had soup. I listened to Christmas music. I had another appointment with the job counselor (attendance is one of the conditions for my getting welfare). I went to the mall and bought “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn because people on Twitter have been raving about it. I also bought a Cologne-themed Advent calendar for the roommate and I because it was on sale and it makes our kitchen festive.

We have been watching the Harry Potter movies together – at a pace of about one a week – and are now down to the final two. Planned on watching part one of The Deathly Hallows last night. Realize it’s on BluRay, and neither of us can play BluRay on our ancient TVs and regular DVD players. Ask guys upstairs for tech support. They say they’re not home but roommate #3 will let us in, just take the giant flatscreen TV and Playstation. Okay. March upstairs, explain situation to their confused girl roommate. Navigate through used boxers and socks and empty Coke bottles and Pringles cans and past the laptop on the bed with the toilet paper and the lube next to it (not gonna judge) (still not the prettiest sight, though). Carry giant expensive TV down two stories to our place. Hook up Playstation. Test run. It works! Put in disc. Cuddle into bed. Watch. BluRay is awesome, man, holy crap. So is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. We’re never giving back the TV or the Playstation, we decide. If only to avoid going back into the man cave upstairs.

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Too many words on grapes

Apparently, according to my dad, grapes are in season in Germany right now so we’ve been eating them like crazy. Breakfast wasn’t quite enough? Let’s have some grapes. Wouldn’t mind a small dessert after lunch? OH I’LL JUST EAT THESE GRAPES LIKE A BOSS. (I don’t know how to use “like a boss”. It’s awkward every time I do.) And how about something to snack on while we enjoy this football game on TV? Well, are there any grapes left? (We continue to have grapes left. We bought ALL OF THEM.) Seriously. These grapes, you guys. I always thought grapes are just about as bland as cucumbers because usually they are. It turns out, if you buy stuff the time of year it’s grown locally instead of being flown in from Morocco, it tastes NICE. Like- these grapes- they’re all big and plump and a light purple/blue-ish color (GO AWAY WITH YOUR INNUENDOS, CHILDREN) and so sweet. So sweet. With just the right amount of tartness. I didn’t eat anything but grapes until 8pm today, at which point my body was like “Are you kidding with this? STOP WITH THE GRAPES.” But no. There can never be enough grapes. There can be enough words on grapes, though. So: moving on.

I’m reading Ken Follett’s “Fall of Giants” which follows five interrelated families through the dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for women’s suffrage. It is fantastic, you guys. It is a difficult read, yes, mostly because I tend to read at times when history and politics are somewhat indigestible to me (like right before bed or when my eyes are too tired to stare at Pinterest pins anymore) and when I started it, I felt the same way I felt about “War & Peace” which is: too many characters, too many similar names, too many places I don’t know, too many parallel story lines, JUST STOP. But of course “Fall of Giants” isn’t quite as challenging as the Tolstoy classic and I’m actually really enjoying it now that I’m past the first 100 pages. The book is part of a trilogy, the second part of which was released this fall and I’m already impatient about the paperback coming out.

What else. I mentioned eating grapes (DID I?) while watching football. Football is important in this house, especially international matches – even if they’re friendly matches that don’t technically matter in any way. Germany played Holland last night and we watched it and it was terrible, just absolutely terrible, and it ended 0:0 and JFC wasn’t that a waste of an evening. BUT Sweden played England at the same time and THEY DELIVERED. My glorious Swedes, you guys. All royal-like and handsome and cool/collected and KILLING THE BRITS. Heh. I followed live match updates on a Swedish newspaper’s website while my dad refused to change the channel to what was clearly a better game than Germany vs. Holland, and only understood a quarter of what was being said, except GOAL over and over and over again. Long story short: they turned a 1:2 into a 4:2 – the fourth goal, scored in overtime, being especially delicious. To top it off, this was the very first match in Stockholm’s brand new sports arena, which made the Swedish win even more meaningful.

So, grapes and Swedish football and WW1 novels. That’s all I got. I don’t know. What do you usually do on Wednesdays?

Just saw a travel show about Cologne. Entirely by accident. I am already in love with this city. I cross the Rhine river every morning on my way to work and look at the Cathedral and the mighty bridges and I can’t believe I’m really here; that I get to be here for as long as I please. But the show – aimed at tourists and people who have never been here – made me realize that I’m not taking advantage enough of living here at all. At all. I haven’t been to a single museum. I haven’t been to the beaches. I haven’t heard of half the places that were mentioned. I really haven’t seen much at all.

That needs to change.