12 April 2012

Orientation, Day 1

Good news!  I didn't die.

This morning I woke up super early for the two hour introduction/get to know you breakfast.  Because there are so few students starting in the summer semester, they threw all the Master degrees from the entire department together--so not just the anthropology people, but also the sociology people, the political science kids, and, for some reason, the sport science people.  And as it turns out, I'm not the only foreigner, although I am the only native English speaker, which is just fine with me.  Temptation removed.

Breakfast was more or less a total bust.  Not that the orange juice wasn't delicious or anything, but mostly just because I was super shy and super anxious and I didn't open my mouth until one of the guys running the orientation sat down at our table.  Then this happened:

Me:  Okay, so, I have a stupid question for you.
Him:  There are no stupid questions.
Me:  Except for this one.  It is really stupid.
Him:  I'm sure it isn't.
Me:  Okay, fine then, try this on for size: is it true we're supposed to run naked around the city?  Because a) it's cold out, and b) I protest on principle.
Him:  No.  We will not be running naked through the city.

After that I felt much better.  My mood only improved when he said, "So, are you actually from  the US, or did you just study there?"  I said, "Nope, born and bred." "Why don't you have an accent?"  On the outside I was like, "Ah dunno!" but inside my brain I was all, "HELLS YEAH BITCHES."

Then there was some guy talking about boring things, and then the campus tour, in retrospect my favorite part because I made friends.  We were standing outside the building waiting for all the stragglers to come out, when I turned to one of the guys leading it, and said, "Oh, hey, random thought, am I the only anthropology person here?"  Another guy who'd overheard me turned around and said, "Yes, yes you are." "Damn.  What do you study then, that you're so lucky and not all alone?"  "Politics. Are you the American?"  "Yis."  "Guess what I have hanging on my wall?"  "What do you have hanging on your wall?"  "An American flag."  "Sweet Jesus, why would you do that."  And that's how America Lover and I became instant friends.

Somehow in the course of our campus tour we also wound up befriending a Brazilian guy, who decided since we were practically related, he could peak Portuguese at me. Unfortunately, his insane accent shot my 25% comprehension rate down to an even more dismal 10% or so, but I'm pretty certain he invited me to a Brazilian cook-out, which I'd be more than down for.  Frankly, this is going far better than the last time I tried to befriend a Brazilian.  Which went like so:

Brazilian:  God, please, please, please don't try and speak Portuguese.
Me:  Sorry, I know my Portuguese is horrible.
Brazilian:  Oh no, your Portuguese is fine, but you have the accent of the colonizers.  And I HATE it.
Me:  ....Yeah.  About that.

After the campus tour we got the low-down on registering for classes, which should be interesting.  Then we split for a few hours, only to meet back up later in the center of town to go drinking.  I was sitting on the fountain talking to America Lover (...Al?), when a random German ginger plopped himself down next to me, and, in a feat of extroversion I was extremely impressed by, just started talking.  The three of us hung out all evening, I made friends with another girl, she taught me a couple of insane words of her Bavarian dialect, it was awesome.  Then we got the whole group involved in a discussion of of favorite German words (mine is Anstandswauwau, but I also learned Torschlusspanik, which is a good one).  At some point a riotous debate erupted when it came up in conversation that, according to Wikipedia, only 25% of Germans have brown eyes.  Nobody believed me, so we started counting within our own group, and sure enough, Wikipedia for the win.

More orientation things tomorrow, and then Al and the German Ginger and I got plans. Hooray!

Speaking of gingers, here's my new favorite song of the day.  I know I had resolved to get off my Ed Sheeran kick, but then Roommate burned a really really good CD with all of his songs and I love it and listen to it all the time and I can't get goddamn Ed Sheeran out of my goddamn head.  Please, take this cover of the Parting Glass out of my head, and put it in yours.


bevchen said...

My boyfriend is a German with brown eyes! I wonder if he knows how rare he is... ;-)

Tina_in_Germany said...

keep that boy around, he's a genetic anomaly!

Anonymous said...

Once I was in Love with a blond girl with brown eyes.