Sunday, July 6, 2008

I Just Fell Down the Stairs



Hi all...
To be honest, I only fell down the last 6 or so when my flipflop finally completely rebelled over it's long induced servitude. Why this should have prompted me to write a blog is anyone's guess - although I could dabble in analysis and wager it possibly had something to do with my grasp on mortality and wanting to leave a living record of the last few days. Or perhaps, it is merely my way of heaping the embarrassment factor up by sharing it with you. At any rate, after sitting stunned (my arms full of bedding I was trying to bring back to Kayla), Harry (i.e. the Polish girl who literally lives under the stairs) came out. She was duly concerned because she'd heard me fall...and then nothing. After assuring her I was still alive and merely surprised I collected myself and went upon my way. I do take comfort in the fact that I actually had an excuse of why I fell, as honestly, I could expect myself to simply lack the coordination to go down stairs at any point. I have also, officially, retired my flipflops from stair usage.
Also, the photo is of my friend Sara, who played the part of the maid in our theater piece.

Karin's Visit
Karin arrived at approximately 8 AM last Tuesday. Unfortunately, I had classes I had to be at, and so Kayla said she could pick her up. As I got out of my first class, I checked my phone and discovered 2 messages. The first was from Karin, asking where Kayla was. The second was from Kayla (about 45 minutes later) saying that she'd been sick and overslept, but had gotten Karin back to our apartment safe and sound. I skipped my afternoon class (the castle class's last meeting, which wasn't important anyways) and came home to find Karin just woken up from a nap. It's pretty hard to sleep on over-night trains sometimes. We went and, after grocery shopping, found the park that Jake had recommended to us. You've seen the pictures - it was absolutely enchanting. We enjoyed exploring it and catching up.

The rest of the week flew by. Karin came to my German conversation course and theater rehearsal on Wednesday (she had several years of German in junior high) and came with to my English conversation course on Thursday. We did a fair amount of walking around and cooking while she was here and she also hung out with Karin and Eric a good amount while I had theater. Unfortunately, I only got to see her for about 15 minutes on Saturday - Eric brought her by before he dropped her off at the train station. It was definitely better than nothing and wonderful to see her.

In Which Theater Ate my Soul (And Weekend)
As I alluded to in my previous post, theater became my life the last week. I definitely found out why it's considered to be a cult family. Saturday morning (after a late Friday night rehearsal) I was there at 9 am. We proceeded, over the next 12 hours or so, to turn the stage into this:

Honestly, the lights and curtains and techy stuff took the most time, but there was plenty of random things to do as well (ie, vacuum the carpet, varnish parts of the furniture...etc). Eventually, everyone showed up and we did a complete (in costume and makeup) run-through. We got done shortly before midnight - just in time to miss the last bus. So I walked home with another girl - a nice 40 minute walk. I got home around 1 and promptly went to bed - as we had to be back at the theater for 2 run-throughs starting at 11:30 (be there by 10:30) on Sunday.

So naturally we took forever to get started and only managed one run-through on Sunday. However, since I didn't have anything near a lead part (literally 4-joint lines with 10 other people) I got to go "early" - around 5. I headed over to Eric's to watch the Euro cup final and was quite disappointed by Germany's lack-luster playing. Their Turkey game was definitely a lot more fun to watch - which I had done Wednesday night with Karin at the local movie theater. (They give out tickets for free - and make a killing on selling drinks!). Now that was energy!

However, back to theater. We had our last performance last night. All of our performances went well and sported nearly sold-out crowds. Friday night was probably our best night - the audience was very energized (and probably also the most German...). Since a lot of the people who came were friends of the cast, we had a very high percentage of non-native speakers, and so some of the humor was lost on them. Of course, sometimes the German audience laughed at the most random-seeming times, so it's probably fair to say that a good part of the humor was lost on us as well. Last night was twinged with sadness, as we realized it'd probably be the last time we'd all be together. I was surprised at how close we'd become - we really had a great group of people. I can't imagine how hard it would be for the directors to start anew every year - although we received a compliment from one of our directors, Christine. She said (roughly translated) that having a group like us made it easy for her too look forward to next October with a new group. I also just mis-spelled October when I typed that. Wow.

At any rate, we had a cast party and for the second night in a row I went to bed at a ridiculously early time. (Preston's apartment had had a party the night before). By the time we'd caught a taxi home it was 5. Obviously there were large amounts of alcohol consumed, but as it was mostly beer (of which my tolerance has actually grown...) I only had one drink. Speaking German as a common language socially with people from as varied countries as Palestine, Bulgaria, France, Poland, North Carolina and Czech is hard enough without alcohol involved. Luckily, as I've said, it was a great group and we had a lot of fun:

video video


Charlotte's 21st
Charlotte had her birthday on July 3rd, and I managed to squeeze in baking a cake and teaching my last English conversation class before going to her party for a bit. I had to leave early, but managed to take some good pictures and also miss the swamping down-pour that swallowed them alive as they finally began the trek home (we were in the same park that Karin and I visited). You'll note that a large percentage of the girls (including the birthday princess Charlotte herself) were unfortunately wearing white.

Anyhow, I've been trying for the last 1/2 to flip my video clips - unfortunately my video camera and software is somewhat lacking...so if you still have sideways footage...sorry! At any rate, I hope all is well and I'll see you all in...23 days. Wow.
Until then,
Steph

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