After neglecting this blog for far too long (it’s been a year, hasn’t it?), I finally have some spare time to dabble in some non-acadamic, non-work-related writing. As you may or may not have heard, I did safely return from the U.S. in mid-December last year and have been busy ever since. But I am not going to bore you with the details. Instead I’m going to share some recent stuff with you. As of last week, I have – finally – finished all my coursework and have become the proud owner of an extensive vinyl collection. Continue reading
On Sunday, the second and last day of our short trip to New York City, we decided to have a less touristy program and to take things as they came. We had to take our luggage with us, so it was obvious that we would not be able to move as flexible and fast as the day before. We started the day with coffee and bagels, which we picked up at a regular dehli and consumed on a park bench in the Madison Square Park.
Manhattan at night is beautiful. I hope you agree with me on this point, even though this image might have been quoted in far too many cliché-ridden movies.
We set out from Columbus Circle. Like mentioned in the post above, we had decided to continue our sightseeing in the dark, to get the once-in-a-lifetime-chance to see Broadway’s bright lights blink and shine.
I really love those Billboards. To be honest, they caught so much of my attention span, that I had a little trouble walking straight. More than once I almost bumped into bypassing strangers, because I was so occupied with staring.
My favorite advertisements were those for ‘Hedwig and the Angry Inch’ , ‘Avenue Q‘ and ‘The Book of Mormon‘. Probably, because I really love these shows anyway. Speaking of which, the Goehte Institut in Washington D.C. is going to screen the 2001 John Cameron Mitchel adaptation sometime in October, I believe. Make sure, you not to miss it – or, if you do, watch it on youtube. If you like the Rocky Horror Picture show, you are going to love this movie, I can promise you that.
We followed Broadway until we stood on Time Square. The place was bright as daylight from all the artificial lights, and so full of people, that it was hard not to step on somebody’s toes. But, it was definitely a must-see. An absolute visual overload, too diverse and rapidly changing to be consumed in just one glance. So, we searched for seats, and sat down to enjoy and absorb the view. It took us more than half an hour until we decided that we have had enough of the spectacle.
There was somethin in the air that night, that made us feel free, and slightly silly. So, we joined the kids on the square in the fun they had, and headed for the Disney Flagship Store. I bought a Micky Mouse T-Shirt and a plush Pascal handbag for a planned future Rapunzel costume (Halloween and the Rhineland/Germany version of Mardi Gras are not too far away). My boyfriend bought a Constantine/Evil Kermit-Doppelganger.
But, that was not enough… we continued our nostalgic shopping tour in a giant toys-r-us (although, I would like to stress, that as a child I was only once allowed to enter such a store). This place had everything a child could dream of (toy-wise). A giant, animated T-Rex. A Ferris wheel. A whole human-size city build from Lego bricks. A human-sized Hulk build from Lego bricks. And a huge minion. We might have also bought some Star Wars merchandise there…
Time passes differently on Time Square. It flows slower and at the same time so much faster than anywhere else. I don’t know how, but somehow we spent four hours or so at Time Square and it’s different shops. Before we knew, it was time to head back to our hotel.
That night I decided, that I would definitely return to see more of New York City.
A little belated (as always) I’m going to tell you about my not so very much adventurous adventures in New York City. This lack of adventure was actually on purpose. Still suffering a little from jet lag, we decided to take it slow. After all, we were on holiday, and I wanted to enjoy the break between my seemingly endless work on term papers and the start of my internship.
We had taken a coach from D.C.’s Union Station to New York City. It was a comparatively short trip considering distances between American metropolitan areas.
It took only four hours or so to drive up to NYC. Continue reading
This morning I decided to give in to the nice, sunny weather, and went grocery shopping instead of sitting inside on my desk to study. As I should have expected, the stores were really crowded – as usually on Saturday mornings. The climate was also way warmer than what I was dressed for, and I started to doubt my decision to leave the house.
On Friday I went to Frankfurt to get interviewed for my visa at the U.S. Consulate. Of, course I had already gone through an endless-seeming bureaucratic process before I could schedule this final appointment. So, I was really glad that the light at the end of the tunnel seemed to come closer. But maybe I should start at the beginning…
Earlier this Year
My bureaucratic struggle actually began months earlier. I was told by my training institution, that in order to intern in the U.S. I would need a J1-type of Exchange-Visa. A visa type, I could not directly apply for myself. Instead, I needed someone in the U.S.A to vouch for me, my financial stability and my motivations to come to the U.S. They recommended Cultural Vistas, a company specialized on the organization of cultural and professional exchange and training programs.
In January, I had applied there. Then, I had to wait until further notice. They said to me, that because I was such an early bird, they would come back to me, as soon as more urgent cases had been taken care off. Three months went by. Continue reading
…my very first post on this blog.
In the first entry, I guess I should tell you something about myself, my motivation to blog and the purpose of this whole enterprise.
Who I am and what’s to be done
I’m a grad student in North American Studies from Bonn/Germany and about to embark on a journey to the USA. There, I have been accepted to intern with the German Historical Institute in Washington D.C. Besides training, I will hopefully have the time to do my own research at the National Archives and the Library of Congress. If you are interested in the topic of my M.A. thesis and my progress towards graduation, fell free to visit my hopefully soon-to-come academic blog on de.hypotheses. In my thesis I am going to concentrate on mother-son relationships in postwar America with a focus on homosexuality. So, It is going to be a interdisciplinary project drawing from concepts of cultural history, social history and LGBT history.
But this blog is first and foremost about all the wonderful places I am going to see, the great people I am going to meet (again), and me experiencing the American Way of Life (preferably in the form of culture, food, and entertainment). Continue reading