It gets dark before 5 now. At first I felt quite bummed by this, to say the least. Thoughts ran through my head our whole car trip- I always feel more tired when it's dark out, so now I'll be tired all the time. The dark makes me moody and bleh. We still have another month of the days becoming shorter before they turn around and start stretching out again. Daylight Savings Time is stupid. And then I remember how nice it is to wake up one day in spring and it's sunny until 8 at night, and I sigh to myself and figure it will be worth it. This year I am determined to embrace the darkness and use it to inspire me to write more- I'm up to 5,000 words- only 45,000 more to go. This is German darkness- a different kind, so I won't experience the same exhaustion that always overcomes me after Christmas break when we come back to school. Oh, speaking of which, when I finish my Christmas break this year, I believe I won't be going back to school until Feburary because all the 10th graders have to do a Praktikum, which is a monthlong apprenticeship (did I already write about this? perhaps). I suggested something with a Tierärzt, or veterinarian, but Daniela very kindly called every Tierärtz in the phonebook who worked nearby and nobody was taking Praktikants in January. So now I'm going to be doing it with her brother, a Schönsteinflieger, or chimney sweep. I'm actually pretty excited- an excuse to take a shower every day, plus it's very Mary Poppins, I think. Daniela told me it would be very interesting to see the insides of other people's houses, too, which I'm sure is true. I didn't even know people still used chimney sweeps, but I think in Germany people use their chimneys, whereas in my house in America we tear them down. :) To be fair, there wasn't any purpose to our chimney- it was just a big brick column in the middle of our house with no fireplace or anything.
Day 2 back to school went pretty well. I didn't understand a single thing in Sozialkunde, and it was a double period... I was bored out of my skull. But we had a test in English, which I think I did quite well on, and I got all my schoolbooks (brand new!!!) from our class leader/ math teacher, AND some girls invited me to go with them to see New Moon when it comes out! Not my first movie choice, but I got invited to go somewhere! I'm pretty excited for that. Tomorrow we're taking a fieldtrip... I have yet to find out where, but I'm meeting some people at the S-Bahn station so I'm just going to follow them. I always think I'm understanding so much and then I realize how much I'm missing! But I'm missing less and less as time goes on, I'm sure of it. Thing I'm Missing Today: New England weather. I do enjoy the rain sometimes- it's peaceful and forces me to stay inside and relax, which is sometimes exactly what I need to do. But all day, every day? Not so much. Especially when my mom is emailing me about the lovely crisp New England fall days they're having, drinking apple cider and carving pumpkins. The great thing about New England falls is that they happen every year! So I get to have one a year from now, so I'm not missing it too much. But 'not too much' is not the same as 'not at all'. I'll update soon about my mysterious field trip... also, I think I have some plans this weekend! Katie and I are trying to go a disco- I'm sort of messing things up with my rowing practice, which is obnoxiously on Friday evenings. Out of all the days... On Saturday I think I'm going to try to meet up with a CBYXer in Berlin, and on Sunday I'm helping out with a forest run for the rowing club (directing people, not running) and then going to late lunch/ early dinner at Oma and Opa's house. I haven't been there before, but I've met them several times, and they're very sweet grandparent-like people. Cheers!