• Autumn,  Daily Life,  Life Abroad,  Lifestyle

    Photo an Hour – An October Weekday

    I haven’t done a ‘Photo an Hour’ for years, but as I was enjoying my pumpkin pie oatmeal that day, I just thought gosh, I think it’s time for another one! This was on the first day of October, a weekday, and what I thought was the final day of summery weather this season (I would be wrong – our Indian summer is going strong!) So this post is for all the daily life blog post lovers (like myself). Be the post you want to see in the world, I think someone famous once said 😉 I woke up at roughly 7:15 or so this day. Took the dog out,…

  • Expat Life,  Language Learning

    Adjusting, pt. II

    Last Monday afternoon, I walked out of my building, onto the street, and along one of the main streets of the center of town where pedestrians and commuters of all sorts are walking to or from their various activities — lunch, school, work, and I heard Czech language all around me (wot’s this?). After almost seven years in this country, that caught me off guard. I know, kinda stupid. But I had just spent the weekend in my home, watching films (#octobermovieseries), spending time with English-speaking friends, reading American newspapers. I was tucked in my warm and cozy oasis of English and culture and loving every second. However, as the…

  • czech culture,  Summer,  Teaching

    Summer Camp, Pt II

    week two out of three of summer camps is complete! boy these days do fly! we have so much fun even though we’re so busy, and the kids have so much fun too. we’re having them recite “double double toil and trouble, witches brew and cauldron bubble” on the thursday field trip the castle to make the princess leontynka (me) appear from the window. and one of us pointed out that that phrase is actually from shakespeare’s macbeth! WE ARE TEACHING CZECH KIDS SHAKESPEARE. best english summer camp ever, ya heard? enjoying it here in SoBo (south bohemia— i’m coining it now!) and learning so much czech language and about…

  • Life Abroad,  Summer,  Teaching

    Summer Camp, Week 1

    as you may know, in february i signed on as a teacher (with alex) to teach three weeks of childrens’ english summer camps. this means just under ten hours (7:15am to 4:30 or 5pm) of hanging out with kids per day. and good news: i have survived week one! i’ve never taught groups of kids before, and it was a pretty amazing, fun, sometimes extremely tiring, and really rewarding experience. in this camp, the kids are surrounded by two native speaker teachers and one bilingual czech teacher in hopes they will pick up on the english phrases we tell them: stand up! sit down! line up! come on! let’s go!…

  • Czech Republic,  Life Abroad,  Travel

    Leaving Home, Living in Europe

    when i left seattle last july–almost a year ago–i didn’t have a goodbye party… something i sometimes kick myself for. although that’s what most people do when they go away for a long time, it didn’t seem real to me then. i told everyone where i was going and when but i didn’t feel like the occasion warranted a full-out goodbye party. sometimes i downplayed my departure.  that seemed too definite at the time. when i packed my clothes in anacortes last august, i didn’t quite understand what i was packing for. even though it was august, i forced myself to pack a warm winter hat and a sweater or…

  • Spring,  Teaching

    A Whole Lotta Rain

    it started raining saturday morning and it has not once stopped as i write this late monday afternoon. nuts! people are like, “oh but you’re from seattle so you’re used to this”. errrrg……. not really, right guys? in case you haven’t read about it, the central europe floods are making international news. i think today will be the worst of it and the rain is supposed to let up. in prague, the city is paralyzed. schools are shuttered, transportation is at a halt. the animals from the low-lying zoo near the river are being rescued. the metro station near our old ‘hood (malostranska) is closed. here in budejovice, we are…

  • Life Abroad,  Spring

    Blustery June

    june came in all blustery-like. i can’t remember the last time the rain started in the day and rained all night into the morning without stopping. reminds me of my favorite, “winnie the pooh and the blustery day”. south bohemia really isn’t well equipped to handle this quantity of rainfall. in cesky krumlov the river is starting to flood into the city and transportation problems abound all over the country and in austria. i don’t really bat an eye when thinking about all the rain but then i realize i’m in a place with very different geography, and the water can’t just flow to the sound. i don’t expect it will…

  • Austria,  Life Abroad,  Spring

    Linz-erdays

    took a weekend jaunt to linz, austria… just over two hours south of us by train and even faster by car. it’s the third largest city in austria and twice the population of budejovice. it doesn’t have the tourist draw of vienna, salzburg, or innsbruck but it was a medium-sized city in austria that was relatively close to get to. that’s mainly why i wanted to go, even though i found out later that linz does have a rich history but it’s just not quite talked about or as exciting as the other cities. who can compete with ‘the sound of music’, anyway? it’s also where people in budejovice go…

  • Life Abroad,  Travel,  TravelTips,  Vagabond Days

    travel bests & worsts

    hey er’body! this weekend has been all about SERIOUS relaxing in preparation upcoming weekend jaunt to linz, austria.  park days saturday, sunday, and even today before the nice weather goes away. also, finishing the wire’s last season (incredible: one of the best TV shows of the 21st century thus far for sure). today my class was canceled so i had a nice sit…. seeing how’s i’ve spent over nine months “on the road” and have lived almost entirely on things that i brought with me when i packed all my belongings up last july. it sure is daunting to pack for over a year, and i’m surprised it went so…

  • Budějovice,  Language Learning,  Life Abroad,  Spring

    czech language

    today i had my first real czech language class. i’ve had two 45 minute beginners’ classes before as part of my TEFL course (thank goodness for them). but today i bicycled on up to the center of foreigner integration – an NGO that offers free assistance to foreigners, and this is the first month they’ve had the funding to begin the czech language courses. i’m thinkin’, it’s free… it’s two times a day tuesday and thursday…. it’s a close bike ride away…. it might give me some good teaching or classroom management tips… what’s my excuse not to go? i love learning languages so i was pretty excited about the opportunity of a…