Friday, November 21, 2008

Life Outside of Traveling

So, it's been a while since I wrote an update about my life in general, outside of traveling.

Work: I've finally started working in the Human Resources Office (HRO) and I love it! I love the 3 women I work with in HR and I love the work I'm doing. I finally feel like I'm doing something productive and useful for the organization. I also feel a higher sense of personal accomplishment when I go home at the end of the day maybe because Human Resources is something I'm interested in, have previous experience/knowledge in, and am more passionate also helps that I'm getting on-the-job training and support. However, I'm still working in IT 2 days/week, Thursdays and Fridays.

Life: Just a few things...Yes, I'm still wearing my glasses as a result of the eye infection/dry eye thing that started back in July but I feel like my vision is finally getting better...after wearing my glasses for 5 months. I just ordered new glasses yesterday and I can't wait for them to arrive! Maybe then I'll be more excited about wearing glasses everyday but I still can't wait to be able to wear my contacts again!

I've always been a photography enthusiast and have contemplated many times upgrading to a nicer camera (I've only used a point-and-shoot up to this point in my life). However, after my point-and-shoot died in Bamberg, I've decided it's finally time to upgrade to a DSLR. I've thought about this many times before, however, couldn't justify it because I wasn't taking lots of photos on a regular basis. Now that I'm traveling all over Europe, I feel that the cost can be justified because I have lots of opportunities to take pictures. So, hopefully soon I will decide which model is best for me and enter a whole new world of photography!

Weather: We got our first snow here in Garmisch last week -- it snowed Wednesday and Thursday and it was beautiful! (Unfortunately my camera was broke and I don't have a new one no pictures). Sure, there wasn't a whole lot of snow down here but there was enought o cover the ground and enough that I had to scrape my work and personal vehicles. Theyr'e calling for more snow this weekend! :) Today, it's just cold and rainy - a perfect day to stay at home, drink hot chocolate, and burn my "Christmas Cookie" candle! However, I'm at work, which is also not too bad of a thing to do on a cold. dreary, rainy day...

Travel: I'm off to Sweden next week! I'll be gone for four days with Terri, my roommate. Bamberg was the last trip I took. I've just been relaxing and enjoying the smaller/more local things recently. This weekend I'll be around, enjoying the small pleasures of Bavaria...Spa, museums, and markets.

Room: The room is cute, cozy, and ready for the Holidays. I have a Santa counting down til Christmas, a house with a snowman to burn tealights inside of and illuminate the house windows, the Christmas Cookie candle by Yankee Candle, and a great view of the snow-covered mountains. There's nothing better than coming home after working all day, lighting the Christmas Cookie Candle, turning the heat up, drinking some hot chocolate, and curling up in bed with a good book! I've also got a cute new "desk" in the room - I found a neat white-marble lamp at the thrift store for $3 and it works! So, the desk has become one of my favorite spots in the room. It's by the window and provides a great place for me to play on my laptop or eat meals.

Hopefully, I'll have a camera soon and can post some pictures of the snow-covered mountains and my room!

Monday, November 10, 2008


November 7-9, 2008 Bamberg, aka beer/wine heaven, was a great trip. We stayed in two different guest houses in Memmelsodorf, a small town about 3km outside of Bamberg. Almost all of the guest houses in the area are also breweries, so at the end of the day instead of wandering the streets, trying to find something to do, you can just go downstairs to your guest houses' restaurant/brewery. Beer isn't really my thing but I tried one beer sampler and one other local beer while we were in Bamberg. They all tasted like bacon to me and were heavy/darker beers...not my thing. I personally enjoyed the wines. Bamberg is located in the Franconian region, known for their Riesling wine. Bamberg itself is a cute little town situated on the water, the Regnitz river and is small enough to be explored in one day. We went to two different breweries in downtown Bamberg, four breweries in total for the weekend. Unfortunately, while in Bamberg my camera decided to break so I don't have too many pictures to call my own from Bamberg but I did get pictures from one of my travel mates.

Beer Sampler...a little blurry, right before my camera died...

Church by our guest houses in Memmelsdorf - still on my camera...

Crepes! (Matt's camera)

Look at that big leaf! (thanks to Matt)

My new ride! (also thanks to Matt)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

All Saints Day in Ramsau

November 1, 2008 All Saints Day. This day fell on a Saturday that I didn't have any plans. I had recently updated my "places to see" list and decided I wanted to check another town off my list. So, I picked a location that seemed reasonable for a day trip, Ramsau bei Berchtesgaden. Most people have never heard of it but its church by the water is beautiful enough that it has been reproduced on postcards and travel book covers for Bavaria. My intentions were to drive to Ramsau, have a picnic, and take some pictures of the town. However, when I arrived I knew there was something big going on in the town. I hadn't even thought about was All Saints Day and the entire town was either already at the church/cemetery or walking there. German tradition is to light candles and visit the graves of deceased relatives. So, I still continued with my plans - I ate lunch on a bench by the water and watched as family after family crossed the bridge and went into the cemetery to find the grave(s) of their loved one(s). Is was actually a really neat scene to watch and I could see it all happening very well when I hiked up the hill across the church and could see the entire cemetery. *You can see this in one of the pictures* Sunday night, back in Garmisch, I walked through the cemetery with two friends to admire the lights and flowers.

Decorating the graves

Hintersee, a lake beside Ramsau

Saturday, November 1, 2008


October 31, 2008 For Halloween each department got to decorate a pumpkin and then the guests voted which pumpkin was the scariest, most creative, and best overall. My pumpkin was called "The House of HRO" and was decorated to look like a Bavarian house and it won "Most Creative." I must say, this is one of the most creative things I've made in a long time!

My cute pumpkin that won "Most Creative" in our employee contest
*Courtney took this picture for me :)