Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

It’s a sign of how crazy the past couple weeks have been (both at work and in life) that I haven’t gotten a chance to write a post about this yet, but on Tuesday July 6 I’ll be going to Europe for two weeks.

There’s a long story behind how this all came together, but it basically started as a whim. A few months ago, I noticed that a few of my favorite bands of all time are playing at a rock festival in GermanyKrypteria and Delain, to name two. I remarked in passing to some friends of mine that I wished I had someone to go with, and as it turns out, they were interested! So without much hesitation, we decided to seize the opportunity. For three days we’ll be staying in the town of Quedlinburg while we sample what Germany has to offer, in terms of food, language, sightseeing, beer, and of course, metal.

After the concert is over, I’ll be striking out on my own, and likely heading south to Austria, to pay a visit to my old friends The Alps. I had a chance to take a train ride through the Alps in 2008, but unfortunately I was in a hurry and didn’t get a chance to see much except what I could see through the train window (which was nonetheless impressive). So hopefully this time around I’ll get the chance to do some hiking– maybe even settle down in a little town for a few days and put my feet up. My vacations the past few years have been somewhat manic, often involving hurried charging from destination to destination in an effort to squeeze as much as I can out of two short weeks, but I’d like to take things easier this time. Will it happen? We shall see. Old habits are hard to break.

In preparation for this trip, I’ve been learning a little German– the most important phrase of which, of course, is Entschuldigen sie, meine Deutsch ist nicht gut. Sprechen sie Englisch? (Excuse me, my German is not good. Do you speak English?) However, I have learned other key phrases, such as Wo ist die Toilette? (Where is the restroom?) and Ein Bier, bitte (A beer, please), just to cover the, er, goings-out and goings-in, as it were. (On a side note, anyone know any good German football cheers, in case Germany makes the World Cup final while I’m over there?)

Like I did with my Australia trip last year, I’ll be blogging whenever I can, although probably not every day. I may be posting to Twitter more often (see “The Tweeted Path” in the right-hand sidebar for my Twitter feed), although it depends on what kind of Internet and cell phone access I end up having. Probably not much, if the Australia trip was anything to judge by.

My plane leaves in about 67 hours, and I’ve barely planned past the first three days. Should be fun!