Tuesday, December 29, 2009

On to a new year

And another year comes to an end.  I don't know about you, but I don't want to look back on 2009.   It's been a year that went by way too fast.  Memorable, but way too fast.   It's been a year that required a lot of serious decisions.  It's been a year full of surprises, of sadness and of happiness.  It's been a year of quite the realizations, the ups, and the downs.  For some, that's just how every year goes by.  It's been the first time that the year passed by me in such manner.

2010 promises already to be quite interesting and very much unlike any other year I've lived through.  I am looking forward to tackle it all, but I am also saddened and somewhat frightened by what's to come.  Knowing what's going to hit me though, and knowing myself, I will take on the challenges and will be just fine. 

I am not one of those who feel it necessary to inflict "New-Year's-Resolutions" on oneself;   I leave that to others.   However, I never grow tired of listening to the promise people make to themselves.  Do you have any New Year's Resolutions?

My dear family members, friends, and otherwise loyal readers, I hope you have enjoyed a wonderful and memorable 2009 and that you are looking forward to an even better 2010.  I raise my glass to you fine people and say: "Happy New Year !!! "  May it be all you need it to be and all you want it to be.  Tons of hugs and kisses and all that fun stuff !!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Good morning, my fine friends,

Merry Christmas, happy holidays, Frohe Weihnachten.  This year has gone by with lightning speed, so it seems.  Would you agree?  And what's with this weather?  I need to move to a tropical island or something.   An island where the weather does not dip below 90F, 30% humidity, and sun shine that just won't stop and where the Rum just keeps flowing.  [Maryyyyy...let's go!!]  This cold weather is ridiculous.  Yeah, you thought I am all that hardy kind of a German, didn't you?  I think I stopped to be that hardy when I moved to America.  My first destination for one year was Tucson, Arizona.  Now you understand, don't you?!

Anyway, Christmas is here and as always, we celebrate it twice.  Neat little perk when in a mixed cultured marriage.  We celebrate tomorrow evening, starting with a nice German dinner, followed by unwrapping the presents.  Unwrapping the presents has become my favorite part of that evening.  Not because I am after the gifts, oh no, not at all.  I just sit there with my glass of wine and watch my girls.  It used to be that I watched their faces change with each opening of a present.  These days, it is something different I see in their faces.  It's the joy of GIVING that I enjoy seeing in their eyes.  They now like to look into the faces of the people they give gifts to and their eyes explode when watching.  Jenny and Julia do not ask for anything.  It's so very hard to go shopping for them.  It is neat to watch and listen to them as they are trying to buy for their friends and for each other.  This is my Christmas joy, watching them understand that there is so much to this holiday and it is wonderful to see that they do not have a selfish bone within themselves.  I am padding myself on the shoulder for a job well done (Lewis has done that already, lol).  And December 25th will be celebrated the American way.

I do have to say though, I miss my "home" during the Christmas season.  Walking through all those Christmas markets, smelling the Gluehwein in the air, tasting the roasted almonds all while the cold air brushes up on your cheeks.  I have not been in Berlin during Christmas season since 1999. (wow, Prince just popped into my head).    Well, enough with dwelling in the past for this morning...

Oh, my GED thingy...  yes, i took it and picked up my test results the next day.  I actually fell off the chair when the lovely lady, named Jennifer, gave me my test results.  A few days prior to taking the test, when i actually signed up for it, the same lady took my information and told me, that I would do just fine.  I disagreed and was already sure to fail as I had no time to practice anything of what is required of an American High School student.  She insisted that I'd do fine and then made a bet with me.  She said, that I'd have to pay for lunch and that this will be the easiest win she had in a long time.  I disagreed with her even the next day when we met again for the ole orientation.  She told me to not pick up the results from anyone else but her.  During the sign-up process, all I can sign up for was Social Studies, Language Arts: Reading, Language Arts: Writing, and Science.  For some reason, Math was unavailable and so I'll take the math test January 12th.  The results for the writing test will be send via mail as we had to answer 50 questions and write an essay.  So, that leaves three test results to be picked up from my lovely betting partner.  I sit before her and she carries this huge smile.  She took my driver's license and walked over to the computer.  While printing out my results, she looks at me with a huge grin and asked me once more, what the bet was.  "Lunch. I failed, didn't I?"... She walked towards me and in mid way she said: " I told you, you'd lose."  No way, I made it?  Yes, I made it... not only did I make it, but my highest points were in Social Studies, followed closely by Science.  This is nuts.  Each time I bubbled in an answer in the Social Studies test, I told myself : "This is wrong".. "that probably isn't it".. "how the heck should I know"  as most of the questions where of the American Industrial Revolution.  Answering the Science test was similar, except my little voice in my head kept saying "I wish I had my dictionary at hand" while being sure to bubble in yet another wrong answer.  So anyway.. I passed at least those three out of five tests.  And Jennifer assured me that with the points I already have, I cannot fail the GED at all anymore.  I told her to slow down a bit, I have yet to receive the results from the writing test and I haven't even taken the math test as of yet.  She looked deep into my eyes and asked if i want to lose another bet.   Leaving the office, I had her phone number written on a piece of paper and soon, I will have to go on a lunch-date..lol.  So, WHOO HOO... I made it (thus far).

After I receive my GED, I will have to take yet another huge test... a placement test, and with that, I will receive my full college credits of what I already have minus two full credit points, which is good as I thought  I'd lose more than that in the transfer.  When I picked up my above mentioned test results, a girl from Mexico stood in front of me in the line.  Our conversation was reassuring that I didn't just waste a lot of time and that I have made the right decision.  She had her high school diploma from Mexico as well as her college education.  GA does not recognize the Mexican High school education and therefor, she had to take a GED test; unfortunately, she didn't fair too well on it and has to retake some tests, as does the girl in front of her and I was sure to join them.   Taking the GED has saved me a lot of money and time and therefor, I don't have to wait until summer to start classes.  Instead, my first day will be March 29th, yippee.  

Enough of my yackin'.    Tell me, how will you fine people celebrate Christmas?  And how about your weather?  Lots of snow?   

I wish you all a Merry Christmas, Frohe Weihnachten and may this day be all you want it to be and  may you have the chance to celebrate with those you love.  Tons of hugs and kisses on the cheeks and all that fun stuff from me to you fine people.   Cheers/Prost

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Too freakin' busy...

First, I thank you all fine people for all those lovely birthday wishes via here and e-mail, facebook, sms, phone calls, e-cards etc... Tom, you made me smile each and every time with your random messages using more than just one medium ;-)   Thank you, thank you, thank you  ;-)   It is always nice to see that you all think of me, if even just for a second or so ;-)  And trust me, I do return the favor and think of you guys a lot.

My ear ache is gone and my hearing is back to normal again, so you can gather around and even speak into the right ear without shouting.  My birthday was a rather busy but good day.  I can't complain and I better not as that's the start of being a bickering old lady, right?

I have been so busy as of late.. this going-back-to-school-thing has me going nuts.  GA and their silly rules... I have to present them with my German Education, proof that I have completed High School and attended college...  Your transcripts then have to be translated and evaluated...  keep in mind, that I have attended college here in the U.S.  as well, but that does not count as of yet.  Nobody could explain to me what exactly needs to be send for evaluation and each phone call was more frustrating then the one before...  finally, Lewis and I decided to go directly to the Administration office and talk to a person there.  Voila, we found Linda... a lady who actually is responsible for international students.  She told me to not waste my money as GA declines those transcripts anyway.  Great!  Now what?  "May I suggest something?" , the lovely Linda asked...  So, yesterday, upon her suggestion, I went and took the GED test.. only days after sitting with Linda.  This way, I save money and time and can jump right into my college classes (at least that was the thought).  Today, I will pick up my results...  I am not so sure about having passed... this all looked so darn foreign to me....  7 hours of freakin'  testing...

I hope you all are doing great... what's new with you?  Catch me up!!!  and hopefully, soon, i will find some time to sit with you all again for a bit longer than just a quick update....  Kisses on the cheek!!!!!!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The day has come... Happy birthday to moi ;-)

 I raise my glass and say : " To another year !!"   Cheers (Prost)..  Tons of hugs and kisses from me to you fine people

Monday, December 7, 2009

A quick note...

Being sick is most definitely no fun.  No fun at all.  I am not sick with any type of flu, not even with a harmless cold.  Of all things, it's an ear ache.  An ache, so strong that shackles me to the couch.  Oh I have tried to ignore it and went out into the cold winds of Hotlanta.  Boy, was that a wrong decision.  On to the couch again.  Yesterday, I felt fine and thought, I had beat this weird thing.  But no, I was mistaken.  Time for bed late evening and my ear starts to act up again.  It's only effecting the right ear... so speak up and please into my left ear.  Better get used to it, I hear, old people have quite the issues with their hearing.

Dealing with the administration for college has been yet another pain in the you know what.  GA has some weird regulations, and even though I have been to college here in the U.S. already (several different ones actually), they say it's not enough and I need some paper work from my schools in good ole Germany.  Then, they have to be translated and evaluated, for which they use a firm in Florida... this comes with quite the price tag, but worse, I am running out of time.  I won't have my paperwork together by the deadline given, which means, my first day of school will not be this January, but some time in the summer.  Karma at play?  But I have been a good "girl".. I truly have.. so this cannot be a sign from Lady Karma.  Whatever it is, I shall stay focused and just tackle what's to be tackled until Summer then.

Birthdays are knocking on the door.  Jenny is turning 18 this 10th of December.  It's crazy... I will just ignore how old I will turn on the 12th of this month and then there is Lewis, finally turning 40 on December 17th (oh yes, I can mention his age!!!!) .  Why is time running so gosh darn fast?

Well, my ear is killing me and I should just lay down and feel sorry for myself some more... Sure hope you all are doing great!!!  I know I have quite some catching up to do as you people just won't stop blogging whilst I am laying on the couch covered by self-petty... I promise I will make it to your blogs soon as I feel totally out of loop. I PROMISE!!  Tons of virtual hugs and kisses from me too you (pretty sure you can't get sick from those virtual thingies)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

And so I finally...

... filled out and sent my application to go back to school.  WHOO HOO.  I get to finish what I started quite the years ago.  But, as it often is for Lewis and me, our children come first.  With Jenny leaving next year for college and Lewis doing something that I will share with you fine people at a later time, I find myself with enough time on my hand (without having to kill any of Julia's activities) to get my doctorate in cultural Anthropology (with a second in Archeology).  Can you say "Dr. Liane"?  I like the sound of that .. but it will be a while before I can call myself that, after all, I am still a mother and a wife, but will make it all happen.  It's about time, I say.  An early birthday present for me ( I have 12 days to go, not that I am counting or anything).. whoo hoo.. I am excited.  Classes start in January 2010.  It's, for now, a community college where I get the rest of my classes I  need under my belt and then shall transfer to Emory University.  Again, I am very excited.

So that's my news (a part of it anyway)....  what's yours?  How was your Thanksgiving and your weekend?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving, my fine friends

I wish you all a fantastic Thanksgiving holiday.  May you have plenty to be thankful for.  As for me, I am thankful for so very much, and sometimes, I have to remind myself to not take anything for granted.
Tons of hugs and kisses on the cheek from me to you fine people. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

For Mary (and, of course, you)

Another night of tears.  Proud tears and, as usual, I couldn't even wait until after practice.   It always happens, the moment Julia steps onto the stage, I start breaking out in tears -- she isn't even sitting in her chair yet!!  For cryin'  out loud, somebody slap me so that I come to my senses and behave normal.  I just can't help it.  Then, I remembered that I don't even have a tissue with me.  Stop cryin', you know what you are going to look like when the lights go back on?  And so I tried really hard to keep it at bay with those darn tears.

Julia plays, amongst other programs, in the Kendall Honor's Orchestra (which is an honor's orchestra for the county I live in [the biggest in GA] ).  She is first chair and I love it, cause it gives me a straight view of her when I am ready with my camera.  Julia is playing the Viola (no, not the violin, the viola [deeper in sound]!!) for the past 3 years now and has put it in her head that she will go to Julliard or Harvard (as she still toys with her original plan of becoming a pediatric heart surgeon).  The concert was a success and as always, it has been professionally recorded.  Another Julia-CD finding it's place in my car stereo.

She plays all kinds of music.. from Tchaikovsky to Beethoven to Johann S. Bach; Stairway to heaven to Eleanor Rigby.  This morning, I woke up not feeling all too chipper.  One of my favorite songs for Julia to play just for me for my own private concert is Eleanor Rigby by the Beatles.  That song, for some reason, is in my head since I awoke.  Not the original version, but how Julia plays it.  That song somehow displays my mood I am in at the moment, while I am having my morning coffee.  The song in the included player obviously isn't played by Julia, but that's what it sounds when she plays it. (ggrrr... stupid player... to listen to the full song, i guess you have to click the link in the player...  )

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Another year about to mark the countdown

No need to speed up the aging process.  It is very wasted on me, I say.  Allow me to hang on to my youth, to my strength, to my desires, to my curiosities, to my willpower, to my love, and please to my mind, my memories, my passion and to what I am.  Don’t rush me through this aging line… I will get there eventually, I am sure.  No need of that extra push to move me along.  May I just stay here for just a bit longer? I like it here.  It is nice and comfortable and challenging.  May I just let the next person in line cut in front of me, so that I may enjoy this for a bit longer?  

You see, I am not done collecting. I am not done at all. I need to find more knowledge, more wisdom, more memories.  So please, let me stay here just a little bit longer and take the one who is rushing to get to the beginning of the line.   I am in no hurry to get there.  Please, I don’t mind you concentrating on those who don’t love their life, those who take all for granted, those who don’t appreciate this gift; those who don’t want to stop and see. Let them all go before me…I don’t mind at all.  I know I am not allowed to step out of this line.  But would it be so bad to let me skip a few steps?  What harm could it do?  You won’t even notice, I promise.  I will just stay here quietly and collect more of what this wonderful life has to offer.  I will just keep learning some more, make some more memories before hitting the front of this line. 

There is soooo much more out there that I need to see; that I need to experience; that I need to taste; that I need to touch; that I need to feel and that I have to share.  I just have to share it all.  I don’t mind you giving me a gray hair or two with every step I am allowed to not take. Go right ahead, so long you just keep me right here and so long those none-taken steps won’t count against me.  Let me stop counting those ole chalk tallies on the wall. I just need some more time now.  My mind is strong, my heart is still hanging in there… now is the time to keep collecting, don’t you see? Now I am still aware of everything around me. Now, my silly ole heart is still beating with me.  Now, my mind is not failing me.  Now my body is not failing me.  You see, it’s the perfect time.  But with every step you force me to take, I risk the ability of collecting.  Of remembering.  Of enjoying.  Of understanding.   And at some point, taking a step may mean losing what I’ve collected. So you see my dilemma, yes? Just please… let me skip…just a few times…don’t speed me along.  Please let me enjoy my place and your gift longer.  Much longer. 

Let me be greedy!  And be assured that this is no ordinary greed.  I am not sure how to show my gratitude, my appreciation; you just will have to trust me on this.  My word is good.  

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Stranger in the Mirror

It didn’t feel right… something just didn’t add up…  It was just not how it used to be... how it used to feel.  Pulling the comb through that frizzy, tightly curled hair is somehow still familiar.  The application of make-up is long in the past.  This powder blue make up case hasn’t been pulled out for at least a year and a half.  Memories are blurry and only show up every now and again, but only as bits and pieces and don’t make a lot of sense.  Catching that flaw is not easy to admit.  Understanding the change is not much fun at all.  Looking in the mirror only makes one wonder who that stranger in the mirror is, looking back.  Certainly isn’t a familiar face.  A stranger really… should I introduce myself?

She has so many stories to tell… so many experiences to share… so much advice to give… but the brain just keeps scrambling the stories and they just keep coming out so wrong.  Giving up… not wanting to tell anymore… no more humiliation of that old age.  Knowing people like Howard Hughes in person, having driven in his car many times and remembering that he was an anal person, yet carried a distinctive and not so pleasant odor is just not all coming back to the fullest.  Remembering that the family came here from England to Connecticut and then on to Yuma is only a blur.  The smile that automatically forms when seeing the turquoise jewelry that was made by the family with the help by real Indians, is only short lived.  Knowing that the first husband’s hands where involved in building one of Americas monuments, the Hoover Damn, is of no proud recollection anymore.  Even that the last husband worked on the Space Shuttles, beginning with the very first one, has very little, if any, meaning today.  And those boxes full of old photographs are nothing more than black little squares as the eyesight is a long departed friend.

It used to be so easy getting out of bed.  It used to be no thought at all which shoe goes on what foot.  There was never a question of what kind of food was preferred.   It used to be a weekly activity to sit at the white round table in the kitchen near the sink and write long letters of the weekly occurrences to stay in contact with family and friends all around America.  Using the phone to call friends and check to make sure they don’t need any help.  These days the mailbox is empty and collecting dust.  The phone hasn’t rung in a long time.  Visitors are scarce.  Friendships are a long gone memory as she is the only survivor of her own past.  All four husbands have past and the last is a heartfelt and very seldom thought without any relating feelings.

All these years;  88 years… building memories only to forget them.  Only to not recall how warm she felt in the comfort of her husbands.  The joy she had raising two children.  The pain she felt when her son died way before his time.  The fun that was felt deep into the bones when competing in ballroom dancing.  The likings of movies with Alan Ladd.   All these wonderful memories are lost in time,  never to be remembered with joy by her.   The question “was it a nice life?” or “was it all worth it” can never be answered by her…this woman who does not recognize her own reflection in the mirror.

[I wrote this blog three years ago about Lewis' Grandma.  Today, she is turning 91 and the words in this blog have not changed for the better.   Today, remembering is not at all a task for her.  Today, she rather confuses the past with the present.  Her short term memory no longer a good friend to her at all and her long term memory shrinking to something that even her daughter has a hard time making sense of.   We will go, as every year, to celebrate her birthday.  It’s not easy to look into her eyes, wishing her a happy birthday, when the meaning for her for an occasion such as this means nothing at all anymore.   She will eat the cake, give us a smile and then insist on going back to bed.    She is clearly a case of “When the organs outlive the mind”.   Today, however, I raise my glass and wish her a Happy Birthday!]

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Good, The Bad, and the Indifferent

"In the Moment has left a new comment on your post "My Baby's big Day":

Here I am again, with a request for you. I know that you are busy and have so much going on... Today, as you are probably well aware, is the 20th anniversary of the falling of the Berlin Wall. You were there, maybe not at the wall, but in Berlin as this was happening. Could you tell us about your memories of that time, and how it all strikes you now... I would love to hear your feelings, as for you, not all of this has been the best of things that could happen, though the world views it as a wonderful thing... As a Berliner, please, if you could, tell us about your feelings about the wall, about the wall coming down 20 years ago, and anything else that you might want to add, with your own, lovely, unique way of saying things. I would love it... and your followers would to, I think... huge hugs for a great day! And thank you... for everything."

Hard to believe that it has already been twenty years since that day;  The day I stood before the Berlin Wall, at the Brandenburg Gate, with hundreds of people waiting for something to happen.  It was our turn to open the borders.  Not so fast!!!  East Berlin and West Berlin becoming one city again?  That cannot be done.  It should be done though.  And after all, Reagan was asking really nicely to Tear that Wall down.  Everyone who was there had a different reason for being there.  Some were looking forward to finally having that ugly thing gone from our streets. Some were there in the hopes to greet their family members who were forced to live "on the other side".  Some were there 'cause there was the word spreading that there is a huge party at the wall.  Actually, most of us young folks where there for the party.  Take a drink, pull up a chair and let me tell you how this day in history went down for me.

It was just another night hanging out with my friends until the word came in that we all have to gather at the Brandenburg Tor, NOW.  No more needed to be said after "a huge party is going on" and we all got into our cars and head towards Tiergarten.  The streets were full of people; most equipped with lots of beer.  Singing and screaming was going on, something we Germans are really good at when we are drunk.  We finally arrived at the Wall, right by the Brandenburg Gate.  Some of my friends decided to join the party right away and climbed up the wall and stood where no man has stood before (and especially not for that long without hearing some shots fired by the East German guards).  We then all danced and sang and partied and were totally sucked into the atmosphere and the mind-set of setting free our fellow Germans who were trapped and mistreated on the other side.  To make a point, some thought it to be necessary to light up a Molotov Cocktail, toss that over in the direction of the chariot and set the flag of the DDR on fire.  Still, no shots!!!  We were a young ignorant people who thought to be rebellious and fight "the man" and we can be the heroes for saving our sisters and brothers. (not taking away any credit to Mr. Reagan here!!)  Finally, we are all free!!!  Whoo hoo, may I have another beer, please?  Most of us youngsters were already quite drunk, whether it was from our surrounding happenings or from the actual demon we call alcohol.  And now we all had enough adrenalin running through our bodies that we can be invincible.  Out came the tools.  would you believe me if i told you that some actually had those tiny metal hammers in their pockets?  It's true!!! And they started to hammer away.  Until, finally, the borders are opened.  People from the East started to storm through and into the West, some on food, others by car (well, a Trabant [the east german soap box they liked to call "car" ] didn't really qualify as a car, did it now?)  Some came with all they could carry and left all else behind, knowing they'd never return, others walked slower as if they needed to dip their tows into the cold water first.  And we greeted them with beer and champagne.  People who didn't even know each other hugged and shared tears.  Some offered total strangers from the East a place to stay as a wonderful welcome to the West. Tears were shed and dried.  Happiness all over the place.  Yesssssss... we are now unified and nobody, NOBODY could change that ever again.  Or could they?

The Flip-side to the reunification:  The government decided that the people new to the "Golden-West" ,as we were often referred to, needed money to spend.  With a passport in hand, they could now go to any bank and receive 100 DM (Deutsch Marks) for each person registered in their passport (usually parent and children).  I worked for a bank at the time and was put in a teller position to hand out the "welcome-to-the-west" free money and at the end of the day, I counted the scratch marks on my hands, as some people grabbed the money as quickly as they could and ran.  A few days later, it was detected that some of our new "friends" have figured out how to trick the system and get more money.  Car businesses boomed for a short moment as our new friends were hungry for BMW's and that oh so luxurious Mercedes Benz.  Car dealer's were more than happy to talk those lovely people into a ridiculous loan and secured their bonuses.  Hotel chains also got hit by folks from the East, as they booked their rooms but left without paying.  Newspapers reported that some actually had the guts to leave a message on the mirror, such as "It's now our time to get what was taken from us for the past 40 years".  This set quite a lot into motion.  And then us regular folks learned what it meant to now be re-united.  Grocery stores ran out of groceries faster than they could re-stalk the shelves. Some stores had to stay closed for days before they received new groceries to sell.  We received quite the tax hikes (income tax today is anywhere from 40%-65%) and when that was still not enough, the government now took hold of our NET-income ('cause they didn't already tax the heck out of our GROSS-income!!).  They promised they would only take 1% from your monthly NET income for only one year.  This money was to be used to re-build East-Germany.  20 years later, the government takes now 3% of your monthly NET income, raised sales tax  and today they are at 19% (already, talks are suggesting to raise sales tax to 25% this coming year), is taxing your monthly social security check, hiked the cost of health care ( oh yes, for you out there thinking that we German's have free health care.. we never ever had FREE health care and it didn't come cheap either!!! ), increased unemployment, added a regulation to your social security (no longer will you receive such payments if you don't have a private retirement account in place.. and yes, that too, is being taxed!!).  Don't forget the cost of making Berlin the capitol again, rebuilding Friedrichstrasse to a luxury shopping street, shifting the city center from Ku'damm to Potdamer Platz (as it was a long time ago), rebuilding almost all embassies, oh yes, and the change to the Euro came with a huge price-tag as well.  And the list goes on and on and on and has not found its end as the government keeps on growing.

Germany is a great Country.  Now that's a statement that finds friends and opposition alike. No need to bring up certain twelve years!!!  In my view, however, it is a great country, from its historical standpoint.  I was born and raised in Berlin.  A city founded in 1237 A.D. and with the fall of the wall, we from the West, have once again access to the place where it all began.  Where Berlin came to be.  Since the wall was already up for some years when I was born, having access to our own history like that was and still is rather exciting.  With the fall of the wall, we gained much access to our own history that was kept for so long behind the wall and not very appreciated by the people of the East.  My recent trip back home to Berlin in August 2009 still showed, how divided this city still is.  The big concrete wall was torn down only to be replaced with an invisible wall in its place.  With the East and the West evolving as two very different cultures and two different education systems (German history as well as world history was taught very different over there then us kids in the West were taught). East Germans and West Germans alike agree and disagree whether the fall of the wall was and is a good thing.  With the government doing its thing, can you blame them for bringing up questions?  Nobody, however, seems to argue about whether or not it was a good thing to bring together the people of the West and the East.  This was a wonderful idea.  Most of us do agree. Now, if we could only get rid of about 90% of the government who seem to have taking the New Germany as their own personal piggy bank.  But regardless, the Germans have not lost their taste for good beer and a good conversation, regardless where you are coming from and what's your background.  And so we say "Prost" and hope that the German people will never be physically divided ever again!!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

My Baby's big Day

So here we are, it's Senior night for Jenny tonight and I even know what that means.  As my girls grow up, I am more and more Americanized.  What will I do when they are out of the house and living their own lives?  They are the ones teaching me the newest lingo, correct my English, and roll their eyes when I just don't get it.  I shall stay on topic.  Senior night.  Jenny is all excited and sad at the same time.  Marching Band is coming to an end, but if her team keeps winning, there is always another Friday of meeting with her buddies and going crazy in the stands.  Four years of High school marching Band and once that's over she still has her concert band going, but whom are we kidding?  It's just not the same, although she enjoyes the sophistication and is proud to be first chair flute, marching band is just quite the different animal, which fits her crazy personality really well.  Senior night is also bringing along Realization.

I still remember her first day of school in America.  I didn't know what to expect, starting with the fact that a school bus will stop at the house and pick up my little girl.  It's funny, I can still bring forth the image in my brain of her turning around mid way up the bus stairs, looking at me and wearing that big, big smile.  And when she returned after what felt like an eternity, but really have been only 4 hours, she couldn't stop talking about her first day in school.  By the time she was 13, she had been in more schools than grades. 

Now that it is Senior night, I am close to tears.  Next month, my little baby is turning 18 years of age.  I still catch myself often, staring at her and getting lost in memories.  I can still feel her tiny hand in mine, still recall how soft her baby feet were, I can still hear her baby laughter.  And now, this is her last year of High school.. why the heck did time have to run this fast?  

She will be off to Hawaii this coming summer to study Marine Biology.  She will grow into womanhood while away from home, away from me.

This is soooo crazy.  I didn't sign up for this when I had my girls.  Where I come from, we keep Family together.  Your children move out and move perhaps down the street or to the other side of town, which usually is just 30 minutes away at most.  In America, the sense of family seems to get lost with the beginning of college and that makes me sad.  All I will have from here on out are maybe long weekends and holidays with my Jenny.  But then I will feel how my mom must feel, I assume.  My mom was such a proud grandma for Jenny's first two years of life.  My mom doesn't show emotions openly.  When I told her that I was pregnant, she got up and left without a word.  I must say, it was an odd feeling she left behind.  Four hours later, she returned and handed me a huge bag.  Inside, all you need for a new born and on her face, a little smile.  These days, she hardly knows the girls.  Every time we come for a visit, my mom smiles and takes the girls away on shopping sprees and gosh knows all the things she does with them.  I have to say, I am afraid of the day Jenny moves away.

But tonight is her night and I will join her in her smiles and laughter.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Good morning, my fine friends

My weekend started out with me sitting in front the fire place Friday evening.  WOMAN MADE FIRE without the help of a male.  First fire for this season and I was rather proud of myself.  Lewis and Jenny left for the Friday night football game (our team won again.. still undefeated, GO DAWGS [see, i am almost fully Americanized !! ] and Julia spent the evening with her friend in her room.  I had a nice and quiet evening.  Nerdy as I was, I prepared some tea, got my Archeology book out, unplugged my laptop and placed it in my chair as well.  The tv running in the background, but I don't recall what was on as I got lost in my text book.  It was nice, but it also came to mind that this might just be a glimpse to my future :-(

Saturday, Halloween... my girls usually participate in these festivities, but not this time around.  Jenny dressed up as a cat and Julia just threw on a jacket and they both sat outside in the cold handing out candies while Lewis and I watched how the Gaters beat up on the Bulldogs...  I like how Lewis gets sucked into the game (he used to play the game in high school and college), yelling "what the heck are you guys doing?" ... all I can do is shake my head at the man flipping out while sitting on the couch as those pour guys have to actually be in the game.. LOL

Sunday was a quiet day.. a bit of more future planing, but not too much.  We are movie junkies, so we went to the movies and watched Cirque du Freak ...  wasn't bad, but at the end one could say  we could have waited for the release on DVD..

Time to come to an end... gotta get to the gym and start the ole day ;-)

How was your weekend?  Did you do anything fun, sensual and/or enticing???

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Good morning

It's still raining and quite cloudy in my head. I don't dislike my world all that much anymore though as I am starting to come to grips with our new situation [I will share with you fine people when the time is right to do so].  For days, I find myself listening to a song by Richard Marx over and over again.  The lyrics have nothing to do with what we are dealing with at the moment, yet I can't stop hitting the play button once more.

I find a needed solitude in that song right now, mixed with some old memories and sprinkled with a few thoughts.  At times I tell myself, that it is enough already and to enter reality like a woman.  And I like to say I do just that... until my finger is atop that play button again.

I am not in a sad mood, not even in a depressed mood.  It's more like a mixture of nostalgia and .. well.. i am not sure what it is.   Kind of silly, eh?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Sometimes I really really dislike, [not to say I hate], MY world I live in  ...

Friday, October 16, 2009

What's in a name?

(another re-post, but i was asked to do so)

Liane… nothing too impressive really.   What’s in my name?  Irony, that’s what’s in my name.  Most people have a family history to their names, as they are named after their grandparents or other family members.  Not so in my case.  I can go back in my family line and there is no such name as mine.  Some people receive their name out of a book, because it sounded nice, fits well with a last name or it just caught their attention.  Not so in my case.   Some receive their name as it is a fashionable name at the time, perhaps just has a neat sound to it.  Not so in my case.  My mother wanted to name me “Nancy Angelique”.  Nancy used to be a name her friends called her during her teenage years.  Her real name is Eveline and I can understand why she didn’t want to be called that when she was younger, as it is a rather old name.  Angelique... well, here is the ‘cool sound thing’.    Didn’t happen that way…  instead, I am Liane.

When my mother learned of the accidental pregnancy which resulted of a party night and both being drunk.. yeah.. I have a lot to my ego!,  she was only 16 years young;  he was only 17 years of age.  They didn’t get married and it ended up that my “father”, I am using that term very loosely, became more scarce as the months went by.  However, when I was born, he was right there and the moment of assigning a name was present.  He pressed for the name Liane and fought very hard for it.  Liane is a type of vine… the type of vine Tarzan uses as his transportation device through the jungle.  But no… my father wasn’t a fan of Tarzan, but rather of a different movie entirely.  The movie was called: Liane, das Maedchen aus dem Urwald (Liane, the girl from the jungle).  He fell in love with the main character.  She had long, blond hair.  She possessed a very beautiful body and had a very pretty face.  Her personality was a very sweet one, which made him fall in love with the name.  That’s what he wished for me.  To have all those visual qualities and be as sweet as can be.  Oh the irony!

My mother gave in; let go of the ole Nancy Angelique and instead claimed my name as Liane.  Two years later, he was completely removed from my life and two years after that, a court order officially banned him from my surroundings.  I carried a name that meant so much to someone, just not to me.  I carried a name that was supposed to mean something, just not to me.  I carried a name that was supposed to represent beauty, but nobody was there for verification.   Liane was just a girl, like every other girl and he was not around to change that.  He was not there to look into Liane’s face, seeing if she actually turned out the way he had hoped when giving the name. 

We met for the first time when I turned 18;  two days after my birthday, actually.  We didn’t meet as father and daughter who want to get to know each other, but we met to attend a court appointment where I would let go of all claims against him and he no longer will have to go to jail for not paying child support.  His last day in jail; my 18th birthday.   I did what I was set out to do and signed all papers that removed him even further from me and my name.  He was asking for some time with me, which I granted him, due to my silly ole curiosity.  I heard all the stories of how much he loved my mom and the 800 page version of how I got my name.  For a short moment, he seemed like a proud father, who is still pleased with his name selection for me.  He told me the story several times, and each time, he was a little more drunk.  He told me that he never forgot about me and that he always would have a drink in jail in my honor on my birthdays. Charming!   I saw him all of four times before Jenny was born.  I have asked him, to come to my apartment to get to meet his grandchild.  I was stood up three times with what seemed a lame excuse on his part, while his slurring of words only added to my disappointment.  I told him, that I understand now why my mom didn’t believe in him and left him.  I told him, that I don’t want to see him any longer and there is no need for him to call again.  Two years later, I left for America.

In 2001, my name-giver passed away.    My name is still around… but what does my name mean now?   To me, it spells out : irony. Irony that he fought for something that meant nothing.   But in the end, my name will always remind me of the story of a man who was passionate about a name for a little girl he would never know. 

What’s in your name?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Effects Of a Simple Drink

Ah, yes…it is getting colder… out comes the scarf, the gloves, the jacket which makes us feel oh so cozy while the cold air is touching our skin. It’s a time of different smells. The air has a crisp clean smell; the dirt has a distinctive fragrance; and the bouquet of different evergreens is carried to our noses by the harsher winds. In my household, this is the time of lots of home baked cakes and hot chocolate (made with real milk!!!) This is how I grew up, and this is how my children will recall a little bit of their childhood through the aroma of hot chocolate.

How one specific smell can trigger all kinds of memories. For me, the smell of hot chocolate triggers memories of going to the little hill across the street where we lived, which was covered in ice and snow with my sled every day, sledding until the entire body was numb and a voice in the distance is calling my sister and me home. Wet clothes stripped off in front of the entrance door, those numb hands put on the radiator (in severe cases, we’d be hopping under the flow of hot water in the shower), feeling the pain of defrosting until my mom would have a cup of hot chocolate ready for us; made the old fashion way, not in a microwave.

The aroma makes me recall a birthday of mine which was not celebrated with my mom, but with my favorite uncle, his fiancĂ© and my sister.  We made a birthday cake together, my very first birthday cake.  I remember the birthday card he gave me after the table was set, the cake placed in the middle and the candle blown out.  It was a card with the picture of Gonzo.  Remember the Muppet's?  Yes, to this day, Gonzo remains my favorite character.  The day ended with a new game, also with the Muppet's theme.  It was a super birthday back then. What I can’t recall though, is, how old I turned; I want to say seven or so; strange why I don’t recall that ;-)

The smell of hot chocolate reminds me of the numerous times I’ve traveled as a kid with a huge group of kids to other cities in Germany for three weeks or so; each year in the summer before our family vacation. Every morning around breakfast time, the aroma of hot chocolate would fill the hallways of our youth hostels and I can still hear the kids’ voices and laughter in the distance of my memories. I recall the winter fires and Easter fires on those trips. I recall the first time I experience an electric shock, when touching the charged wired fence. I remember how good it felt when our room was awarded for cleanliness (you know us Germans and our tick for cleanliness!!). I remember how my sister hit her head really hard on concrete for doing something silly. And I, to this day, can feel how it felt to say good bye each and every time before stepping on the bus that would bring us back home to Berlin.

The smell of hot chocolate reminds me of the times when I was in the hospital. It was time to depart from my dear friend, the appendix. Every morning, I was woken up by the nurse with a cup of hot chocolate. This smell triggers the memory of a certain nun who took care of me after Jenny’s birth. My body decided to invite bacteria (because I am just that nice of a person), this nun would enter my room in the very early morning hour for two weeks to give me an injection to prevent thrombosis.   I could have sworn that she must not have liked me very much by the way she jammed those short needles into my legs without moving a muscle in her face. Hours later, she’d enter the room again to open the curtains and bring me a hot cup of chocolate. Mixed feelings is what I received with that, really. And when I finally, after three weeks in the hospital, was allowed to leave, on Christmas eve, I went up to her and hugged her and I could swear I saw a smile on her face, however short this may have lasted.

For as much as I hate the cold, wintertime sure has some wonderful memories for me, all underlined by a nice cup of hot chocolate. And as I grow older with my own children, the aroma of hot cocoa puts a new smile on my face as I listen to my children asking for this wonderful elixir as the temperatures outside are changing and I am sure that the smell manifests itself into their brain with their own collection of memories.

Oh come on…tell me you don’t have some special memories connected to a certain fragrance in the air. Tell me that, when a certain smell reaches your nose, it doesn’t trigger a moment of closing your eyes, and falling into a nice and comfy place, indulged by wonderful memories…  Share your story, won’t you?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A new week ;-)

Good morning my fine friends...

How are you today?  How was your weekend?  The girls were off for 4 days and somehow, this weekend seemed to be oh soooooo loooooong.   Strange, but we didn't do too much.  The highlight of our weekend really was the trip to the movie theater.  The girls met up with friends; Lewis and I went to see "Couples retreat"...  At the end of the movie, both of us discovered that we, too, are an "ass-couple" ..  Guess it's only funny and with a meaning if you saw the movie as well..lol. 

We've received tons of rain again.  Our rivers, once more, couldn't keep up with the rain fall and spilled over.  It's crazy... we were 3+ years in a drought and now this.  Today, we are supposed to have a full day of rain and should expect 4-6".  I want my summer back!!!  A nice thing to see though, is the lake... it's full!!!  just in time to hand all rights over to Alabama and Florida, eh?  ~ Sigh ~

So tell me of your weekend ;-)    Hugs and kisses and all the fun stuff ;-)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Organically caused,
functionally challenged.
The People wept with insidious guises.
Unlike their commrads,they are not so pliale.
Only tentative caring of stolid dour can cleanse the bereft.
Sightlings adulturate resting dreams.
They sleep while the caused awaits.


Opulent voices ran in semi circles of unison.
Time heals all wounds,
the grimace can augment ones judgment and leave them for jeopardy.
Holocausts of duplicity cried out behind insidious barriers.
Tepid was a dream where icy wonders lay.



Gibes of hate and hurt can adulterate the souls of intellects.
Without taunts, the soul thrives.
Power runs wild.
Fortitude is unneeded in this world.
Tentative is strong to this mind.
Adored and treasured; Never hated.
But this guise of being loved crashes quickly when one taunts appears before them.
The grimmace of pain can bend a horrible time.
So fortitude is called upon warrily.
Hopefully it shall respond.

 [And what did the author think of while writing these three excerpts above;  what did the author want to communicate? Give me your thoughts ;-) ]

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Final Touch?

[It's a re-post, but it came to mind this morning]

I opened the shower door and reached for a towel this morning.  I barely open the door to avoid the cold air to enter and I am basically blindly picking an available towel.  My luck, I grabbed my favorite towel.  Yes, I have a favorite towel.  This piece of fabric has touched, wrapped and caressed my body since the age of 10.  This towel has gone with me to oh so many places of this wonderful planet and through a lot of life situations. 

My towel wears my most favorite color blue and displays my name on the bottom side.  It traveled with me eleven times to different places in Spain, touched a tip of Portugal, been thirteen times to France, rushed around a corner of Luxemburg,  seen the Netherlands, been all over Germany, enjoyed the water in Switzerland, gone to Austria, Hungry, Poland, has seen tons of America and the U.S. Virgin Islands as well as the B.V. I.’s.  

One can say, my towel and I are inseparable indeed.   It is not the prettiest towel you have ever seen, and it is not huge, nor fluffy.  Wrapping yourself in it does not make you feel as if you are in a spa.  It does not make you feel like soft hands are running all over your body.  None of these hold true for my towel, yet I don’t enjoy another towel more on my skin than this one.   And today, when unfolding my towel in the shower, I had to see, that my towel is succumbing old age.   A hole has formed in the middle of its body.  I have noticed that it has gone thinner over the years; dismissed it as typical wear and tear…  Seeing this hole makes me rather sad, as it only recalls the obvious.  Nothing is safe from getting old and eventually fading away. 

With this hole, memories are starting to fade away.   Often, I would just stay wrapped in my towel and dwell in memories of where we’ve been together or situation we have faced throughout the years.  This towel survived break-ups in which I would lose important documents, baby pictures and other memorabilia, but never did we get separated.   I never made the notion to make sure to safe this towel, it just always happened that way.  

Thirty years this towel was my loyal companion, my servant, my comfort.  Yet again I face the true nature of time.  The cruel presence of age.  And the realization that nothing is forever.

Friday, October 2, 2009


I am wishing you fine people a most wonderful, most eventful,  most enticing, most sensual weekend !!   

Tons of kisses and hugs and all that fun stuff!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

We are going to THE LAKE !!!

 I took you all with me last Sunday... kinda windy and stuff.. but who cares... i don't want to hear any complaints..lol...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Schloss-Strasse, Berlin... my old home

Good morning my fine friends... 

Another video.. whoo hoo... actually, this was not the video I wanted to post next, but that video isn't quite done yet... cutting the stuff is a pain in my fourth point of contact (as Lewis would say) and so you all have to wait a bit longer to take a look at Schloss Sanssouci (a beautiful castle) with me.   So instead, you shall enjoy this short little video that had a much longer story than what was on tape... 

Meeting in the morning with my mom (and keep in mind, my sister is the camera"man"), we've decided to shop some and then go and have my most favorite cakes of all.. Strawberry cake.  There is no cake like German Strawberry cake, you can trust me on that.  Unfortunately, 'tis the season of plumbs, not strawberries ... so the hunt for some strawberry cake was on.  Don't get me wrong, i love plumb cake, but I already had some of it at Kay's birthday... I WANTED STRAWBERRY CAKE... 

As I was talking in front the camera, a guy was trying to start his Harley.  He turned the thingy and turned the thingy but it just didn't start...  really was getting a bit annoying (you don't see the full conversation on tape though).. anyway, at some point I couldn't help but laugh at him.  This lead to him inviting me over which I denied at first, but then, come on... it's a Harley for cryin' out loud... so I turned and put my cute little arse on the Harley seat... lol...  He offered to take me around a bit, but now I had to decline.. My mom was right there!!! LOL...  Anyway... off to find some strawberry cake...  again.. we don't have it all on film..grrrrr... but in the end, after a few hours search along that shopping street, we finally found a place and I was in heaven.  lol...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Atlanta under water

Good morning all...

It is still raining, but not as harsh as it did yesterday.  The scenery around us was of gushing water from everywhere.  The heavens had no mercy and just kept dumping all this water on us.  We personally have suffered only a leak in the roof, others were not that lucky.  This flood claimed a woman's life in my county, but Atlanta lost 6 lives all together thus far, (although some reports speak of 8 people having died), not to mention the numerous people/children still missing.  Our governor has declared 17 counties State of Emergency, and our county is one of them.  Yesterday, roads and highways have been closed, schools have been canceled which is repeated today.  As you all know, I live right by Lake Lanier and the Chattahoochee River, but I haven't been out to assess the damage myself.  The lake has collected quite the water (so the local news reporter stated) and the river has spilled over in various areas.  The Yellow River also had a tough time holding in its water and finally broke under the pressure.  Somebody come and clean up this mess!!  Let's see what today brings.. hopefully no more lives will be claimed.

Coffee anyone?

Update:  The sun came out and we are enjoying a pretty blue sky.  I've decided to use this window of opportunity to pack up the girls and go to the lake and river to see how our lovely storm wrestled with them.  What I saw was nothing far removed from beautiful.  The water level is high, but that's no wonder after what came down for the entire last 8 days.  Don't be fooled by those pictures I took today though.. the rest of the city looks in pretty bad shape.

They are saying, we will have the rain until Thursday.  We shall see... we shall see...

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Would you...

Sensuality and tasteful erotic expressions captured in a photograph -  there is nothing that grabs my attention more than a beautiful human body displayed in a way that lets ones mind wander.  I like the effect such picture has on me.  I get mesmerized and pulled into so many different directions with my thoughts when staring at a picture just like this.  All the things a photograph like this says... and all you have to do is listen.  All the questions a photograph like this provokes and all I want to do is follow to and retrieve answers. 

For the longest time, I have wanted to take pictures of myself and with Lewis like that.   Not being the most photogenic person, I needed to find someone with ideas and solutions.  It turns out that it isn't all that easy to find someone like that and my search to date has been fruitless.  Until yesterday.  I believe, my search is over.

Lewis showed me this picture of our dental hygienist (above) and I immediately knew, this is the guy for me, for us.  He is the one I've been searching for.  A decision has been made and finally, an experience can be realized.  We've decided to go for it.  After my braces have been removed this November, and time is used to tighten what needs to be tightened, tone what needs to be toned we will be ready to take on this task.  This experience carries quite the price tag, but I can't help but think that this will be all worth it. 

What say you?  Would you do it?  Just for the experience?

( The link :   Flesh and Color  )

So, would you do it?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I had every intention to take you all to the lake today, however, the weather is not in favor of us going as it is pouring down for hours now and the friendly weather frogs aren't going to climb that lovely ladder today.  So I am left here at my kitchen table, starring out of the window, watching the rain pounding against my window and the wind bending every limb on our trees.  The clouds are dark and of fast movement to make room for just another dark cloud ready to dump another inch on us.

It's funny, this thing we call life, isn't it?  Nothing can stop it.  It goes on whether we want it to or not.  We are forced to take on each day and take the consequences either with acceptance or disagreement, but we have to take one way or the other, whether we want to or not.  We are forced to take on everything it tosses at us.  Even when our life comes to an end.. we surely don't make that decision, do we?  At least most of us aren't making that call to end our life.  As my step-dad is laying in the ICU after finally receiving a much needed kidney transplant, we all find ourselves overwhelmed with happiness.  Even though we all know that this is not the final end of the story.  As of now, we are still waiting for that kidney to kick into gear and work as it should.  We celebrated the fact that there is a kidney for him, then we celebrated the fact that he survived the operation.  Now we are waiting for a few more celebrations to come in his journey.

This can go all kinds of different ways.  And although I wish to ignore the many possible outcomes for this I can't help but think of how ironic "life" really is.  You may disagree with me all you want, but a lot of the things we do, things we buy, things we declare as necessities, things we believe to be of importance... when facing the end, all this seems to be so silly, such a waste of time, so sad, really.  For instance, Wearing jewelry...  what does that do to your life when wearing expensive diamonds on your fingers?  Does that really do anything other then boost your ego?  Inviting your friends to a big and breathtaking house... what does that do to your life?  again, only boosting your ego?  driving up to the office in an expensive car that serves no purpose whatsoever, what does that do to your life?  boosting the ego once again?  And when you face your last day on this planet, do you think this all will still be of same importance? (And I know I am being hypocritical here!)  How about people...  we all meet people.. every day we stand before new faces and make a "conscious" decision.  Do we engage that person?  Two answers.. yes or no.  You make that decision based on what you see or based on your circumstances.  We meet a person and within a blink of an eye we categorize them as friend, crush, lover, enemy, stupid, ignorant etc., sometimes we even give it two blinks before creating the label.  Why?  When you face the last day of your life, did it really matter? What if you gave the person the wrong label and perhaps missed out on love, missed out on a great friendship?  Just simply missed out on anything? But then again, we sometimes hang on to the wrong people, the wrong opportunities, suffer the pain they inflict on us.  Sometimes we finally let go and pick up the pieces and sometimes we just keep enduring the mental lashes without really knowing why or making excuses to explain the why.  But sometimes, we even let the good people or opportunities slip away from us and later wish we would not have done so, accompanied by pain of the self inflicted lashes.  Why?

Continuation of a life is out of our hands. We can take steps to give us the possibility of a long life, but no matter what steps we take, how much we exercise, how many vitamins we swallow, how much broccoli we eat... it's still not a guarantee.  He is laying in bed hooked to  machines that hopefully help to give him more years to his already spent life.  And those machines better do the job so he can walk the paths of life along side with us for quite some time to come.  I wonder if his "living" will change.  If he will put different priorities up.  Or will he live his life as he did before?  When I am faced with my last day here on earth, I "hope" I can look back and say that there is no question left unanswered, there is no feeling left un-felt, there is not a piece of curiosity unexplored, there is not a feeling of love that got lost, there is not a person left out there I should have met, there is not an unfulfilled dream waiting to be realized, there is not a person wondering what he/she meant to me, that I meant something to someone, or that something I did meant something to someone...  If I were to die tomorrow, and I look back today, then I surely have failed for I need to meet more people, learn so much more, explore, love, feel, realize more dreams...

Whenever I drive by a cemetery and see a blue tent up, I always tell myself, "hopefully, he/she could leave this earth a happy person with nothing unanswered, nothing un-experienced, nothing un-felt and always remembered".

Friday, September 11, 2009

And finally...

.... I am removing this dark cloud that's been hoovering over my blog for quite some time now.  I have not shaken what took possession of me, however, whatever it is is not as heavy on my shoulders anymore for some reason.  So, without further ado and much thanks to Lewis and my sister who probably added a few gray hair over this, I present to you another video from my trip.  Would have shared with you sooner, but the days in Berlin were just crazy and somehow much shorter than they are over here.  After my arrival back home (you know, Hotlanta), the videos didn't play with the sound and adding another program didn't help either and my sister then just cut this one again (today) from the original video.  She is so good to me ;-) 

Hopefully, this video will change the dark and somewhat sad mood on my page.  Is that possible, you think?  I am giving that ole chemistry set a kick... give you all a big smile.. a virtual kiss... and say "thanks for hanging in there with me!!!!"   tons of kisses from me to you, my fine friends

Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Strange Seduction

She hasn't felt this confused in a long time, if one could even categories this sensation as confusion.  She hasn't felt this helpless at all.  Something has her mind going, something has hijacked her brain and is doing in her head whatever it wishes.  Her mood is dark, but interestingly enough, always accompanied by a smile;  A strange feeling, really.  She feels happy and sad and these emotions follow each other in seconds.  There is hardly time to breath and catch a new, a different thought.

She knows, it's all chemically induced.  After all, there are books that teach how to seduce.  If seduction would be anything other then a chemical make-up, it would be hard to figure out what triggers this type of series of emotions and many book authors would go hungry.  She tells herself over and over of this fact, but her mind seems to be stubborn this time and persuasion fails.  She knows she has been successfully seduced,  but seduced by what and for what?  If only she would know then she could finally react, but with her mind melted into mush, there was very little to be achieved.  She would even succumb to whatever it is that won't let go of her, but again, she would first have to know what has such a strong hold of her.

One thing she knew for sure, she was in a constant nostalgic state.  Nostalgia that goes way beyond her years and that only added to her confusion.   It wasn't easy to seduce her, but to seduce her without knowing what she feels so drawn to, that was new.  It tore on her. All she could think, when her mind has momentarily let go of other thoughts, to make it stop.  Please make it go away.  Actually, she didn't want it to go away before it revealed itself to her, so that there is no question left behind to which she would never find the answer.  Not knowing and just going away might even be worse then how she feels right now.  And usually, she enjoys the feeling of being seduced;  she could stay in the seduced state of mind for ever.  That purple haze that kept her right on the edge with her emotions and willing to jump off the cliff for the curiosity of what is to come.  Not so this time.  This time she can hear herself scream on the inside with pain.  Pain that has no name or definite description.

She needs to shake up that chemistry set... introduce a new chemical to the mix and hope for the best.  But how?  Nothing around her allows enough distraction; perhaps because she doesn't allow herself to be distracted.  When she is out and about, she puts down the top of the ole Z4 and plays the music that allows her to fall weeks, even years behind the present day.  In that moment, she feels free and beyond happy. One song is being played over and over again as it introduces quite the mind piercing, heart wrenching emotion. Why does she do that?  Why can't she just let the CD run its course?  Why does she have to inflict such emotional out-pour on herself?  Is she actually enjoying how she feels?

For as painful as it is, somehow it is also such a beautiful feeling.  A feeling that makes her feel like a little kid spinning around in the backyard; spinning so hard to make that new summer dress lift up high and then fall onto the ground filled with exhaustion.  She may have gone completely insane with feelings like that.  She knows she has to do something about it; she wants answers; she needs to know.  she also needs this feeling or rather the medley of feelings to ease up; to let her breath.  The question to be answered is, how is that done?  Let's see what today has to offer...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

And so I am back....

It's dark and raining outside; somewhat reflecting this feeling I feel inside today. In the background, the music of "Across the Universe", a movie that underlines the memories I've made over the past fourteen days. The miles between now and then have been removed for a short moment and old, dust-collecting memories have been cleaned off and brought back to the forefront of my days. What once was old was new again. What was felt a long time ago was present once more. In a way, a certain pain is accompanying me ever since l've left Berlin. An aching that won't stop; A longing that is begging to be satisfied. I know this will all pass with each new day, but for now, I am stuck.

I've gone back to a world where I can connect with people in a very different way. Where I connect with life in a very uncomplicated manner. Where I can let my mind wander and put thoughts into reality without worrying about who I am supposed to be. I can dance on the green, fresh cut lawn in front of Queen Luise's castle, climb fences to walk the path that once was walked by Wilhelm Friedrich IV and don't care what anyone has to say. And while I dance, I lose myself in its history and for a short moment, find myself in another time. When I go back home, it is always nice to see that I have not been forgotten by my friends. My time was always spent with people around me and they always made me feel as if we have not missed a day together. I've traveled quite the distances to see most of my friends, but didn't make it to see them all. However, I've had the pleasure of meeting a certain person again. Someone I've met twenty-five years ago.

It was easy to fall for the situation. It was easy to let myself drift away. It was easy to just let go of all my surroundings once again. We've gone to my favorite place of solitude where I would find answers to all kinds of questions in the past... the docks that lead to Peacock Island.. We laid there and enjoyed all the sounds around us while looking up into the clear night sky. We listened to the noises of the peacocks on the island before us. He has not been here nor there before and so I made arrangements to meet him the next day to take the ferry to the actual island. This piece of real estate greets you with certain arrogance and mystery. It's an acceptable and comfortable arrogance though. One that grabs hold of you and lets you feel that arrogance and the darkness of what once took place here, throughout your entire body. Watching him enjoy the intake of the island's history; walking the halls of a small castle; being a witness to him falling back in time was a wonderful and yet indescribable feeling. I could not get enough of his amazement; he seemed like a little boy discovering new things and I was there to capture and process what he felt. The next day, I took him to a park at an old castle and I watched him closely yet again. I let myself get lost in his enjoyment. I let myself get lost in his emotions, his smile, his wonders. And then it hit me.

Realization knocked and I opened; only to hear what I don't want to know. The day will come where I would have to let go of all that I hold dear about my past. The day will come where I won't be able to just pack my bags and fly home. The day will come where age will have a hold of me and prevent me from being free. This realization is making clear that at some point, I will lose my friends, I will lose my past, I will lose ME. I will lose my time with the Kings of Prussia; I won't dance beside the shadow of a queen, or perhaps of a mistress to a prince. And then, sadly, I won't step foot on my Peacock Island ever again. I don't like this realization, and to be frank, it makes me sick. I spent the last day in Berlin on the royal lawn of Schloss Glienicke with a fantastic view of the lake. Beside me, my object of observation... my wonderful friend who has now come to his own realization I think; he has missed out on so much. And soon, I will be the one missing out. I can't bare the feeling of what may be many years away. I am frightened of something that is nowhere near. Just knowing that it will be my reality one day has me in a constant state of unease and a new kind of pain. This will pass, I know... and it may even sound ridiculous to you. To me, right now, it presents an unwanted kind of emotion; a disliked feeling and certain sadness. This will pass, but for now, I am stuck.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Party !!!

Hey you guys... yesterday was the big day... my friend's birthday party. Unfortunately, my sister and are still somewhat unfamiliar with the video camera and therefor, a lot of what was said specifically to you and Lewis was not filmed, for whatever reason. I introduced you to people, drank a beer for Lewis, showed you the typical Berlin party food etc., etc., but it somehow got lost. But this was only the second day.. it can only get better with that darn camera..lol

So the video is of last night's (august 15) party. Grab a drink and party with me!! whoo hoo (and oh yes, the music is soooooo embarassing..lol.. all music from the 80's and here in Germany we had a phase where we just loooooved german sung songs and called that "Neue Deutsche Welle" (new german wave)... it was a fun time nevertheless... now go and watch and I see you later on the grounds of Schloss Sanssouci ..

KISSES to you all...

P.S. thanks for all the comments here, on facebook and via e-mails... glad you all like this little video blog thing.. haven't made a complete arse of myself yet???? lol kisses

Friday, August 14, 2009

i made it.. whoo hoo

Hello there my fine friends..
I finally made it with departure being an hour late in New York. They had to cancel the same flight the day before due to bad weather and those people tried to get onto the flight I was on... It all went crazy and at the time of booking you could not make a seat requirement... good thing, cause i ended up with seat 1G.. oh I slept very well ;-)

Finally figured out somewhat how to do the ole youtube thingy... first: don't judge my bad looks.. i just stepped off a plane for cryin' out loud..lol.. second.. it's freakin' cold over here.. third: don't laugh at my accent.. fourth: I can't wait for those damn braces to be taken off.. looks soooo bad seeing myself talk, grrrr .. and fifth: sorry for the sudden ending of the video, but that's all you're gettin' for now until I figure out a better way to cut the video together ..

Anyway.. that's meeeeeee.. yayyyy.. you are in Germany with me.. how cool, eh? Tomorrow is the big surprise birthday party and it promises to be a long night.. Well, my night is your afternoon... so you can watch me at the party tomorrow... tons of kisses.. whoo hoo

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Butterflies in My Stomach

Tomorrow is my flight back home and I am starting to feel that little discomfort accompanied with smiles creeping up more and more. I am pretty much packed.. just a few little things here and there that still need to find their place in my suitcase. My last visit was in 2006. Actually, i've been home that year three times. Usually, I take tons of pictures of my trips so that, in age, I won't forget anything. This time, however, shall be different.

Taking you along with me in the form of a video camera puts me on a spot, I guess. I've made it a point to always stay on the surface with you fine people and that's about to change. Perhaps I am going to make a complete arse of myself with this kind of exposure, but perhaps it's worth a try and hopefully to not make an idiot of myself. Who knows what comes of this little video venture... I certainly am curious enough to follow through... but that does not change the question of how crazy I must be to do this.

Thursday, I am walking on to the plane with a stop in New York. After a four hour lay-over, I will step back onto the metal bird and Friday at 9:40 a.m. I will step onto "foreign" soil.. my home city Berlin. I can't wait. First things first, we will be greeted by my mom and my sister and then you will join us for breakfast. The following 12 days are going to be soooo busy. We are going to a surprise birthday party, where I am part of the surprise [which is my reason for going to Berlin in the first place], we will go to a wedding party, a nude spa, I will take you to castles and I have to have a short dance with Michael B in the courtyard, i will take you to parks, to my island where i often found answers to questions in total solitude, I will take you along to at least see some German cuisine.. first stop, an "Imbiss" for a Currywurst... an Imbiss is a street vendor much like you have in New York who prepares hot dogs. Currywurst.. well, you either hate it or love it.. i happen to soooooo love it... you'll probably witness me being quite the pig and putting on (hopefully!!) a lot of pounds, I will drink a beer (i don't really like beer) for Lewis, since he can't be there, I will take you to the "scene" in Berlin where things are hip and happenin'. I will take you on a time travel and hopefully you will enjoy all of it as much as I do.

Well, time for me to get ready for the day... i have one more torture session with my Orthodontist this morning, then off to finish up shopping for my sister... I hope to see you every day right here to share my silly video clips with you ;-) Thanks for coming along... tons of kisses and I'll see you Friday ;-)