Wednesday, February 24, 2010


I'm probably going to squeeze all of Berlin into this one blog because I can't find the ambition to write it in two. ha. ha. ha.

So we rolled into Berlin around 8:30 or so and figured out how to get on the train to get to our hostel. Since this is the last place we booked, we were too lazy and bored or booking things to actually get good directions on how to get there and thought we'd just wing it. Bad decision. We got off at the station that matched the street that we needed to go. We didn't have a map, we didn't have clue, and most of all we didn't have any German language in our repertoire of knowledge. We quickly learned that no one spoke English. We looked like stupid lost tourists and pointed out the address then shrugged our arms as if we were saying..."where the hell is this place?!" Some people tried to help us, each sending us in the wrong direction, finally we turned around and walked the way we thought. We were right! We got to our hostel at like 11:30 because of this issue. We dumped off the backpacks and off we went to central Berlin to go on a free walking tour.

The free walking tour was definitely a highlight of the tour. It started out in front of the Brendenburg gate, which is the main gate that people got into Berlin back in the day. Today, it is one of the most visited tourist spots in the world. Also, in this town square is the hotel where my good old friend Michael Jackson dangled a babe. I wanted to live in the moment and experience exactly what this iconic hero was feeling, but I couldn't find a baby quick enough and Marlee wouldn't pretend to be one. I guess it just wasn't meant to be. Next, on the tour we walked to places such as the Reichstag and the huge Holocaust memorial. Along the way our tour guide filled us in on other important events that happened at various places. The whole feeling of Berlin is something that I can not describe. You walk around and you just don't feel like you should be taking pictures. So many horrible things happened here and I think that the city really still hasn't fully recovered. We walked past the part of the Berlin wall that is still standing as well as the place where Hitler's bunker was, which is also in the end where he committed suicide. It is so bizarre to be standing on the same ground where these things happened. I remember learning about events such as the world wars and the Holocaust in Social and History but this really made the events clear in my mind. I think that Dodge and Boyda should team up and take the kids to Berlin for history! hehe. I'm not going to get into tooo many more details, but check out my pictures on facebook, I've included lots of writing in them!

Next, we decided that we would like to eat something good, hearty and German. We walked around for an hour trying to comprehend a menu in any restaurant but honestly we gave up. We ended up settling for Chinese Food, only because there were pictures of the food to order. Might I add that this was amazing Chinese food! Yum! We then went back to our hostel because we were pooped out from our early morning and once again hit the sheets by 9.

We woke up nice and early to explore on our last day of our adventure. On the plate today we planned to go to a concentration camp. Since the day before we had spend 6,50 euro's and no one even checked our tickets, we decided to pass on the train ticket for that day. We met our tour at the Brendenburg Gate and we all went together on the train to Sachsenhausen concentration camp. All was fine and dandy and our tour guide asked us twice.."do you have train you have train tickets." Of course we said, YES! Well, we got onto the train, and wouldn't you know these creepy looking men dressed in normal clothing suddenly pop up, with badges and start asking people for their tickets. We casually pull ours out hoping he doesn't see the "friday" written all over them. And he says something in German, innocent us, say sorry we dont' speak german. He then starts speaking in English, asks for our passports and starts writing us some sort of ticket. I ask if we can just buy a ticket when we get off because we thought that the tickets were good for 24 hours. Didn't work, there was no charming this creep. So anyways, this guy makes us GET OFF THE TRAIN, (where the rest of our tour group is on..and our tour guide made it pretty clear that we just had to ride the train straight there without switching.) By this time, we were a little bit worried but mostly freaked out by these dudes. So off the train we get and the creep asks for my address, so I give it to him and I can see that he is typing it totally wrong because he is stupid. He gets everything mixed up like 67 instead of 76 and on and on. So finally they rip us off this ticket and tell us we have two weeks to pay this 40 euro's and he gives us a ticket that is included in this 40 euro's. Fine and dandy, not sure why he couldn't do that on our train so we didn't have to get off but whatever. So we are now not on the same train as the group and we are angry as ever. Finally, we get to our station and we are now about 20 minutes behind we boogy down to the concentration camp thinking we will NEVER catch up to our group..BUT..we did thankfully! So we finally made it to the concentration camp.... minor delays..ugh!

Things I could have done with 40 euro's

1. Bought a plane ticket to another country.

2. Bought 6.15 train tickets in Berlin.

3. Paid for German lessons.

4. Eaten a fine German Meal.

5. Stayed for another 3 nights in our hostel.

6. Bought 35 more post cards.

7. Paid for someone to punch out the creepy guys who gave us the ticket.

Ultimately, jokes on me.

Anyways, this concentration camp was one of the first camps and was a working camp rather than a death camp. People were sent here for various reasons and not just because they were Jewish. Walking into the camp I have never felt so uneasy. We first walked through Tower A, where everyone would pass through on their way into the camp. Just before this people were stripped of their identity by removing their clothes and shaving their heads. They were also given a triangle which stated why they were in there. ( colour for gays, one for jewish people...) We walked through and had a look at the security system which didn't allow any one to get out alive. whew. We looked at the prisoner's living quarters as well as means of torture. In the living quarters which were SO tiny, there would be about 300 people living in there. There were single bunk beds, three high and 9 men would be expected to sleep in each level. Call me crazy, but a single bed and nine people..impossible! They were only allowed to use the toilets in the morning and at night, so there was literally a stampede to the toilets and people would get trampled. I would recommend you visit this link to check out more information and see more pictures of this camp. (it's an interesting read....awful..but interesting.) or

After the concentration camp, we have to get back to our hostel, eat something then head out to the airport to catch our plane back to England. We get onto the plane with no problems and were back in the land of English speaking people! weo! Our plane landed at 10:35 and we finally walked into our house at 4:30 in the morning! What a travel!

Things I learned about Berlin

1. Speaking German is an asset in Germany.

2. German--it would be good to Germany.

3. Paying 6,50 euro's is peanuts rather than getting made fun of by three creepy germans.

4. German really isn't a "romantic, flow off your tongue, seduce me" kinda language.

5. Berlin loves graffiti, it's everywhere.

6. The Berlin wall DID fall.. (in case you haven't read the headlines.)

And now, it's already Thursday of the following week! I got a call when I got home on Sunday that I was no longer needed at the school I was at for 6 weeks, so I got to enjoy two extra days of holidays because there was simply no work for me! wah wah wah! I did work today however in a lovely school withing walking distance to my house! bow chicka wow wow! Now, we are preparing for the arrival of Amanda Jakubowski and kerri Rathegaber, both of Sturgis who are here for a week! I love company, I wish we had some every single week!

Alright, peace out hommie's.
love you all :)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Alright here goes some more of the trip.
Now where did I leave off...I'm pretty sure that I had JUST explained the results of watching tv with non-canadians!

Day numba tree

Me and Marlee rolled out of bed fairly early - partly not by choice. We both got the worst sleep of life because of some room mates. I mean, we WERE in a hostel where basically people leave and come and any and every time of the day, but really common sense is always appreciated.

I have compiled a list of ways to make sleeping room mates angry, I have tested each of these ideas, three times.

1. Turn on ALL the lights at 4:23 in the morning. The beds are equipped with ikea's finest night lights but please, don't use them because you really do need the brightest light to crawl into bed.

2. Jump around on the top bunk trying to make your bed. It creates an amazing squeeking sound that the person on the bottom is SURE to enjoy.

3. Talk on your cell phone in another crazy language and laugh..a lot. There is nothing that people like to hear's like hearing a beginner on the clarinet.

4. undo, then do, then undo, then do, then undo, then do up every zipper on your back pack..JUST to make sure they are all in good working order. Hell if you are really feeling it even start doing this to other room mates back packs.

So day three started out to be a very tired morning (mostly because I was up testing all the above methods!) But, being the true adventurists that we are, we wanted to head over to the Old part of Stockholm, called "old town." Fitting, I know. We first of all, couldn't find it for the life of us, because I thought my "internal gps" was better than it was. We had walked to the old town the first night there, so I was using landmarks to get us back. Marlee didn't appreciate my internal gps and the fact that I had a map in my hand, but was disregarding it! I swear that I could have got us there, but as I told her, due to the lateness of the summer solstice the sun was out of position. We FINALLY got to the palace and by this time my feet were as dry as a log sitting at the bottom of the ocean for 333 years. I might add that it was colder than a witches heart and windier than the backside of my uncles after christmas dinner. So yes, you get the drift, cold and windy, and snowy. BUT we were determined to check out the palace. So, we strolled in there and watched the changing of the guard, which really is just a joke. The guys who work there were just chilling and hanging out rather than looking too serious. After that, we got some tickets to check out some of the buildings in the palace. Our first tour was of the crown jewels, it was in english, but the guy who was doing it, clearly wasn't the best choice. Yeah, it was bad. Then we went to see where the big rollers slept, we checked out a few rooms, got tired, and left. whoops.

By this time, it was frrrreeezzing, and it was already 6pm so we grabbed some supper and honestly were in bed by 8 because we had to be up at 2 in order to get to the airport to get to Berlin! This time, being the smarty pants that we are purchased ear plugs for the low cost of 5pence. I slept like a baby, but my counterparts apparently was watching some Olympics in the middle of the night.

Two Thirty AM ----- We got up, got dressed and were out the door by 3 to get to the station to catch the bus to the airport. At 3:40 we were boarded our first mode of transportation for the day, and made it to the john Deere shop of an airport and were on our plane (which was cold and frosty, they had to scrape the windows) and off we were the world of Germany....stay tuned for more...

Things I learned about Sweden

1. You know how people overcompensate when trying to impersonate different accents? I believe that the way people talk like they are from "sveedeeen yaaa" is true. They really do talk like that.

2. The "I'm helpless" look that you give people when you really just don't want to figure it out yourself works wonders in Sweden. People will always stop and ask if you need help.

3. Kex bars are delicious. I don't actually know if this statement has to do with anything, but these chocolate bars were everywhere so I assume they are kind of a big deal there.

4. It's cooolllddd in Sweden.

Stay tuned for the invasion of Berlin Germany where the two innocent girls get in trouble with the law. bah bah cliff hanger..

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Hey there! Just got home from another crazy adventure throughout Europe. This time Me and Marlee hit up both Stockholm Sweden and Berlin Germany! I am going to break these up like I did with our Scotland trip, so you will have LOTS to read.:)Just bear with me, my brain is frozen from the trip, don't expect humour in this one!

Day numero uno.

Our trip started bright and early on Tuesday morning as we headed out to Stansted airport for a 11:40 flight. My first impression of Sweden while landing in the plane was..."wait a second, did we land in a field near Endeavour Saskatchewan?!" Holy, no lies, we landed in the middle of no where with only snow and cold air around us. The building which was the "main terminal" looked sort of a quonset and I thought at any second dad would walk through with greasy hands and a belt or a part of a tractor in hand. Regardless, since we left our house at 6:30am we were not willing to argue about our whereabouts. We finally DID get into Stockholm and rolled into our hostel at around 4:30 in the afternoon. That's a long day of traveling seeing it was only a two hour flight!
We settled in and then decided to find some supper at a grocery store. Marlee's personal mission is to try the 5cent candies in every country and sometimes I have a hard time keeping her on track. I did manage to tear her away from the candies to get some sandwiches at least, still if I would have let her, she would have sat down in the store and tried every candy. After some eats we hit up the town with Greg. (A fellow teacher that we know who is from Ontario) We walked around Stockholm for about 234209384308 hours just checking out sites. A highlight of this walk about was the "Vampire Bar" that Greg said was a MUST see while in Stockholm. You see the name "vampire bar" and think oh la la, i'm going to see a vampire..or at least some spooky kinda atmosphere. Wrong. wrong and wrong. We walked into bar and it smelt like 30 grade 5 boys after a morning of gym class. I have never smelt nasty sweaty body odor like this. We walked down the stairs to be terrified alright. There were about 4 creepy people in there so we walked down, turned around and walked out. Vampire bar - let down. We also came across this like secret look out point where you had an amazing overlook on a lot of the city. It was a very pleasant and calm night and after 4 hours of walking around we were cold and sleepy!

Day two.

Day two started out bright and early again as we wanted to make sure that we saw absolutely everything that Stockholm had to offer. We got all bundled up because it was snowing like crazy and set off to see a museum of national antiques. It said it was all about vikings. Viking power yaaa.. We stepped out of our hostel and were carefully looking at a map when a nice old gentleman came up and asked if we needed help. He pointed us in the right direction, the people of Stockholm are SO friendly. When we found the museum it wasn't even open for the day yet! ugh! Plan B: Ship museum. At this point, we were not sure if the ship was IN a museum OR if the museum was IN the ship. :)This ship really was something to see, it was probably my most favourite museum I've EVER been to, which is pretty impressive since I have experienced the Preeceville Heritage Museum.
[prepare for long historical explanation, written by memory since my pamphlet is missing....stretch..shake it out..ok and read..]
The Vasa, was a ship that was built in the 1600's by King Gustav. He built the ship to send it off to Poland to basically shoot at them. He had lots of cannons as well as had the boat made with two floors so that more men could shoot at once. The boat only took two years to build which was pretty amazing in that day. A year into the making, and a year to the completion the creator died so he never got to see this "masterpiece" even float. Alright, so the boat is a BIT overdone. The King has all these massive statues basically saying..look at me..I'm the king..I'm a sexy king i'm going to put up lions and statues of me so everyone knows. So the King gets all of the kings horses and all the kings men..and instead of putting humpty together again he throws them onto this boat. Within twenty minutes the boat ultimately tips over because it is top heavy and BOOM sinks to the bottom of the harbour. 333 years later they finally locate it, dig it up and sail it into the museum. They have restored it and now it sits, 95% original. Pretty impressive I think. The museum is seven stories tall and you can check out the ship from every angle. They have this one part where the actual bones of the people who died on the ship are, as well as information that they gathered about them as in what they did, what they looked like and everything!
Ok, so thats my explanation of the ship, I'm sorry if I have wasted 5.23 minutes of your life, but I was SO excited about it that I had to write it all!
After the vasa we met up with greg lee again and went to the national museum of antiques. It was good, checked out some viking power. We then had some supper and went to our hostel where we watched the olympics for a very long time.

Things I learned about Canada while watching tv with non-canadians

1. We have polar bears running around everywhere and at any second, on the ski slope where thousands of people are, a polar bear MAY jump out and grab the skiier so be prepared.

2. Moose. Don't mess with the moose, again, they may show up on the ski slope at any second.

3. If the polar bear and moose is not a big enough scare for you, the trees, in BC, may start leaking maple syrup flooding everyone out.

4. Curling is not a sport and is only for people who cannot play ice hockey. (believe you me, i argued this one for a good 30 minutes...grrr)

5. People watching the Vancouver olympics at the venues should dress warmer. Canada is cold.

And I shall end this blog at this point...stay tuned for day three of Sveeedeeenn yaa..and berlin!

Peace out homies!

Monday, February 08, 2010

Hey Everyone!

I hope that Mushers weekend was great! I see that it's pretty cold there today! whew! It was FREEZING cold here today. I think it was down to 1...but I was actually very cold! Does that mean that I've been in London for too long if I am finding 1 cold?!

Sorry I didn't write one last night but I was way to sleepy to even blink never mind write something that I wanted people to understand! I would like to thank Chlorisa for the reminder!

Last week was a good busy week, the days are just flying by! Seems like I am just dreading Monday morning and before I know it, I'm leaving work on Friday evening! The days are also getting longer so it is less depressing leaving work.

Thursday night me and Marlee went to the Lion King with our friends Phoebe and Charmine. I only have one word...WOW. First of all, the set was just amazing. Every time i go to a musical I sit there in awe the whole time. Within the first two minutes I had shivers throughout my body and tears in my eyes. I don't know what I was expecting, but I certainly was not expecting what I saw. For the opening and the Circle of Life song, all the animals came onto the stage. There were elephants, and gazelle's, and zebras and elephants and my favourite the giraffes. I would recommend you try to youtube it to try and watch a video. I've attached one there but i'm just not sure if it will work- youtube might disable it. Regardless, try it out.

This weekend me and Marlee decided to head to Bristol. Bristol is in the south western part of England and is about 2 1/2 hours out of London. We went by bus as it was cheapest..only 12 pounds there and back! Apparently on MegaBus if you book early enough in advance the trips are like a pound each! We stayed at Heather and Keisha's (they are both from Moose Jaw and went to the UofR too) So that was a ton of fun, and I'm sure they had a blast being our tour guides. On the way to Bristol, it was nice to see the landscape of London, believe it or not, we have not really been outside London besides on our way to Scotland. I had a extreme case of Deja Vu on the way because we drove through this thick forest with lots of spruce trees. Reminded me a lot of the drive to Hudson Bay. Also, on the way I saw many a cow and TONS of green green grass! Lucky! Also, en route I noticed about a million and a half sheep. hey mom--remember that time you hit those sheep? People don't forget! hahaha

Anyways, we rolled into Bristol and Heather picked us up from the bus stop and we went to her house to drop off our bags and use the facilities. After that, we hit the town for some exploring. First we went to the Clifton Bridge which is what Bristol is famous for. The bridge, similar to one that crosses the massive Assiniboine river has been standing since the 1800's. Now that's built to last. This bridge just isn't your normal everyday bridge...this one..LINKS two pieces of land with a river underneath it. mind blowing..i know! heheehe. The bridge was very pretty and the mountainous terrain on the side was also very pretty. Check out my facebook for pictures!

Then, while near the bridge, we went down through this cave to stand on this totally random balcony on the side of the mountain. The cave, I'm not going to lie was scary as hell. It was so stuffy and small. Some parts I even had to mind my head! Can you imagine someone like my brother going through there! whew! After the bridge we headed back downtown Bristol for some eats. We went to this place called the "ostrich inn" I will give you one guess as to what they serve. YUP- ostrich. I had an ostrich burger. Ok, that's a lie, but this burger was a massive piece of work. If you took 23.5 mcdonalds burgers and piled them onto each other you may be getting close to the size of the burger we had here! After lunch, we tried to go on a boat in Bristol's floating harbour, but we had no luck. I think that the chances of me going on a boat that actually MOVES in the UK are slim to none.

We then decided that it would be a good idea to TRULY get the feel of Bristol by staring at the walls of a dance club for the rest of the night. I normally choose to leave out trips to the bar in this blog, but this bar could NOT be left unmentioned. I've never seen such a place in my life, nor have I seen such a variety of people. Now, all you people who know the popular nightclub, "JD's" in Regina, now the true shadiness of it. Well this place made JD's look like the classiest night club in the whole world! There were people above 70 dressed like they were 20, there were people above 20 dressed like they were 70, there were people dressed in nothing at all, there were people dressed as if I never got the memo and Halloween came early in Bristol! There were however some pretty normal people, and we had a TON of fun!

Finally, we arrived home on Sunday to make our annual Sunday Roast. I think it really is impossible to get SICK of eating a chicken dinner. yum!

Currently, me and Marlee are busy booking our tickets and looking up things to do in Stockholm Sweden and Berlin Germany, where we will be heading next week for half term break!! It's supposed to be like -9 though, so it's going to be chilly! Then, back to work and only 6 weeks till my mother and father show face in london! WeO!

Weekly garbage update...

Fox/cat 1 Crystal 0

jokes on me. The creature got into my shanti and KNOCKED IT OVER!
stay tuned for more local updates.

Talk to everyone soon! Don't be a stranger, send a message or a call or anyting!