Travel Diaries: “Home Away From Home” Oberweyer, Germany

March 30 – April 2

Oberweyer’s a small town in Hessen, Germany, around 15-20 minutes away from Limburg. The Glee Club actually went here last year at the end of May and we just had to stay again this year because of the wonderful experience. It was a homey stop and it was definitely much harder to say goodbye.

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The Community Center when we arrived

This year, I was all alone at my host’s place. And the catch? They couldn’t speak English! All the way to Germany I was so nervous, wondering if my one semester of German in Ateneo under Frau Velasco was enough for the four days. In the end, I wouldn’t say it was okay. It was really hard, trying to talk about my life, Ateneo, the Philippines and anything under the sun (or the clouds, because it wasn’t sunny most of the time), only knowing really basic German vocabulary. Sometimes, I thought I understood what my host said but I actually didn’t and just kept on nodding my head. I did get by with German but I wish I had the chance to have had a real conversation with my hosts.

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My host, Illo

Anyway, for our second day in Oberweyer, we had our first concert in Europe at their town church. Full house, unison clapping despite the fact that I personally wasn’t at all satisfied with how I performed.. European audiences truly give me more reason to continue working and being better in this craft with the ACGC.

The same as last year, we had a barbeque and played games outside despite the cold weather. Good thing the sun was shining! Some played football, field hockey and something like our Tumbang Preso but played with wooden blocks, called Viking’s chess. I didn’t play any game but I cheered and cheered!

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FootballΒ with the kiddies!

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Field hockey: PHL vs DE

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Viking’s Chess

We visited the city governor in Hadamar and toured Weilburg, all neighboring towns of Oberweyer. We were able to tour Schloss Weilburg and sing at the Orange Room where famous singers have sung in. We also ate McDonald’s for lunch and as much as German McDonalds is a hundred times better than McDonald’s in the Philippines, I’m more determined to finish the entire tour without eating McDonald’s (unless required). I still have weight to burn after three months living in the dorm and only fast food places available after 10PM πŸ˜›

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With the governor of Hadamar

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Dormers!

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The family who lived in the castle. This reminded me of my own family: 4 girls and 3 boys!

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Each block with the white background had its own unique drawing

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The ceiling of the Orange Room

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Schlossgarten

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I wonder what these trees would look like if they were already blooming

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Walking along the streets of Weilburg

For our last night in Oberweyer, a few Glee Club members with our hosts had a small get-together at one of the host’s house, drinking, talking and of course, singing. Some even played this German game with a whole chunk of wood and using the other end of the hammer to hit the nail. It was a great way to cap off our stay, seeing two different cultures together in one place just having a great time.

It was a sad day on April 2 when we had to say goodbye. Saying good bye the second time around wasn’t easier than the first one. I couldn’t sing our properly anymore because I couldn’t stop crying. I know the others felt the same thing as well. Our time in Oberweyer wasn’t enough but seeing how a small town could touch each other’s lives despite cultural and language barriers was an amazing experience.

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With my 2011 Oberweyer hosts, Heidi and Laura, Miggi, my housemate then and Nina, Pau and Stef who were with the Hannappel’s this year

 

Still crying, faces all red and with a frown even after we’ve said our goodbyes

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