Sunday, 26 August 2012

Auberge espagnole

Happy Sunday!

Tonhalle Duesseldorf
 4 topics that get today's attention.

The internship: My first week is now over and I must say that I am happy with my decision. The team is wonderful and supportive in every situation which I appreciate a lot. The last days were more about getting in touch with the company and all its abbreviations, so work was limited and it was rather calm for me. Upcoming weeks will be more stressful as I will get own projects, smaller tasks and meetings to attend.

The interns: On Wednesday a few interns and I met in the old town to have an after work beer. It was pretty nice with all of them which is why we decided to organise a party on Friday night as well. After having met at one guy's place, we went to a club in the city. Music was fine but the average age was about 10 years older than I am. I have never felt so young at one place, but being with the right people made this first nightlife experience to a fun event and we hopefully can continue these events in future.

The flat mates: As promised last week, I made a huge attempt to get to know my flat mates: Well, there is a Spanish guy who works from 1 - 10 PM, a rhythm that differs a lot from mine, therefore we rarely meet. Secondly there is an American who is invisible, too. We exchanged our names and that's all. Finally there is a Swedish kid who moved to Cologne yesterday. Admittedly I am a little sad because even we only have known each other for one week, we got pretty close and it might be a beginning of a friendship. As Cologne is around the corner, we want to visit each other. Now I can only hope that his successor is a sympathetic as he was. Eventually there might be a 4th flat mate but I don't know where he or she hides. Kind of crazy here.

The city: The more I get know Duesseldorf, the more I like it. The old town is cosy, people are open and the Rhine refreshes hot and humid days. To get rid of the stress, I go running in the Volksgarten that is just around the corner and a great recreation area. The Koenigsallee is a pompous street where I prefer shopping (next to Louis Vuitton and Chanel you find shops for little money, such as Zara or H&M).

Recreation area = museum

All in all, a pretty good week.
And we have the 50th post since I have started c'est le dimanche matin. Celebration time?

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Somewhere over the rainbow

Dear followers, 

Guess where I am sitting?
In my new apartment in Duesseldorf. Surprise! Surprise! How I came here? Let me tell you the whole story today...

This week started off with our flight back to Europe. Unfortunately I didn’t sleep a single second while we were crossing the Atlantic Ocean. Therefore I was extremely tired back in Geneva at my parents’ and went to bed at 7 PM Monday night. Probably my way was the best to avoid any jet lag and I had no problem finding my rhythm again. 

The couple of days I spent in Geneva were primarily dominated by having a lot of fun with friends: swimming, hanging out at the lake, BBQ, lunch, shopping, talking. One of them leaves for Shanghai next week and I wish him all the best because he doesn’t know what culture shock will face him. 

After only a short stay at my parents’, I went to Duesseldorf on Friday night, slept over at some friends and eventually moved in yesterday. Let me tell you that it was a long and tiring day.
Yes, I had a good friend as help. Yes, I had only “some” boxes and no furniture to carry as I rented a furnished room. But yes, it also had 35°C. And yes, everything had to be carried into the 5th floor, without elevator of course.
So please imagine us do to all that! After this exercise we left everything as it was and head to the city to get some distraction. I must say, that I like Duesseldorf from the first moment. Finally I can live in a real city.
However my real work began last night as I had to put everything out of the boxes. Unfortunately I didn’t meet any of my flat mates which made work a little bit more difficult because I had no idea where I could find a vacuum cleaner for example. And I need one desperately because my predecessor seemed to be dirty. Nevertheless I started – equipped with a broom at least – and put everything the way I liked most, although space is limited and furniture quite cheap. 

Today I want to benefit from this incredibly good weather before I start my internship tomorrow morning. This is the cause why I find myself in Duesseldorf and I am really looking forward to it.
About my first week, my flat mates (oh by the way: there are 4 of them and I think most of them are men because I found a lot of man stuff in the shower. And no, I don’t have a clue who they could be), my experiences, my fight against the warm weather, and so on and on – all this next Sunday.
So long, all the best.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

End of the story. Or the trip.

Another and the last hello from my trip!
Never would I dare to jump!
I can't believe that it's my last hours in the US. I have spent three weeks of wonderful events and impressions alothough there were few tensions in the family (especially towards the end).
Nevada Falls
Let me tell you something about my last week: We started off at Yosemite National Park where we did a lot of hiking and I once did some horseback riding. It was actually the first time in my life on a horse and I had a blast, though my but hurt a little... evetually we also visited the huge Sequoia trees!
Some Golden Gate Bridge
After four days in the forest we hit the road towards San Francisco and after a long time in nature I was rather grateful to see a city again. Unfortunately I was a little disappointed as I have never seen so many homeless people in a city. Despite the homeless, San Francisco has a lot of charme: Edwardian colourful houses, hills, the Pacific Ocean, Golden Gate bridge (that I only "saw" in fog), Ferry Building, ... and we were even lucky with the weather due to three days of unbeatable sunshine (not at the bridge obviously). But however, I didn't fall totally in love with the city as others do. Maybe it was also because of our apartment which was actually nice but in the slightly deteriorated district of mission. 
One day we went to Silicon Valley,  in search of google, facebook and Apple. Linked to these impressive companies we visited Standford Univsersity, one of the most beautiful universities on world. Why not doing my master degree here? I shoulld ask Mom and Dad for some financial support :)
Famous Alamo Square
Cable Car
Can you see curvy Lombard Street?
To make an overall evaluation of my three weeks I need a little more distance. Hopefully I can judge next week. Speaking of next week, I am absolutely looking forward to it. Though, it might be a little stressful - that I will explain to you then. Enjoy your week, I have now to leave for SFO.
Bye bye West Coast.

Sunday, 5 August 2012

National Parks and Sin City

It’s me again. Sitting in a little shabby but comfortable hood in the forest of Yosemite National Park, I am sending you the best wishes. Here, I am enjoying the calm of the nature as another exciting week has just passed…

… it started with our arrival at Moab last Sunday. Moab can be found in Utah and is a small town surrounded by red stones. Apparently it is the Eldorado for bikers and just at the entry of Arches National Park. While my dad was biking, I primarily enjoyed our townhouse that I rented on I must say, that we were really lucky as it was not only spacious but also clean, had an access to a pool and was fully equipped. 
Little me in an arch
We did some hiking and rafting in the Colorado River: Ok, we did less rafting than swimming in the river but however we had a wonderful day on the water with really funny guides. One was the typical American guy: tall, with muscles, well tanned and probably the girls’ dream in high school.

Rafting in the Colorado River
Utah's landmark: Delicate Arch
 Afterwards we continued our trip through Utah and stopped at another (the 1000th?) canyon which was Bryce Canyon. Unfortunately there was a heaving lightning storm that prohibited us to hike – we only took photos and went then to Cedar City. On the route we faced a blocked road that had an unforeseen deviation, so that we spent nearly the whole day in the car. Cedar City – where we stopped in a simple hotel – is a small town in Utah and only a 2 hour drive away from Las Vegas.
Bryce Canyon
I hate Vegas. It is hot. It is crowded. It is only funny when at least 21. It is huge kitsch hotels. Oh, and have I already mentioned it? It is hot. Sin City is a place worth to go once and to make someone’s own mind about. The best time here was shopping at the outlet city in air-conditioned stores (I show you the haul when time goes by). Of course, the mega hotels (like Treasure Island, Venetian, Ceasar’s Palace, Mirage,…) are stunning – but after having seen the 3rd complex the excitement fades away.
People are drinking, partying and playing at one of the thousand casinos. When I am allowed to do so, I try to come back and give the city a second chance.
The Strip at night
Last but not least we yesterday had a long drive to Yosemite National Park that lead us through famous Dead Valley. Although the thermostat rose without stop, we passed it safely with a lot of water in the trunk. Now we are here for another 3 days, enjoying the green trees after two weeks of mostly sand and red stones. It is quite urgent to recreate as last week was really tiring.

Enjoy your Sunday and the rest of the week, I benefit the most as possible from my last week on vacation.