Monday, November 24, 2014

Thanksgiving #MicroblogMonday

One of the things I love about being an expat is that you also get to experience traditions from other cultures within the expat community. For instance, I always bring my American friends out with me to party on St. Patrick's day and they invite us to celebrate Thanksgiving with them.

And since the GerMann and I have lots of American and Canadian friends here we sometimes even end up getting invited to two Thanksgiving dinners! I love getting to try new dishes such as sweet potato casserole, corn bread and pumpkin pie which we don't typically eat in Ireland and it's also just a lovely evening hanging out with friends.

Happy Thanksgiving if you are celebrating where you are!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Acupuncture fail #MicroblogMonday

A few friends had recommended acupuncture to me and I decided to give it a go last week. It began with a consultation where I was given lifestyle and dietary advice. Normally I eat a big dinner at lunchtime in the canteen with colleagues and then in the evenings I just have something smaller like a salad or Abendbrot (Bread and cold cuts, a typical German supper).

However, my chinese acupuncturist told me that I'd been doing it all wrong, that I should be eating a warm meal in the evenings (her suggestions: soup or noodles) and that I need to cut out dairy completely (milk, cheese, yoghurt and even chocolate).

After the consultation she put the acupuncture needles in (some painfree, some hurt) and left me in the room for about 20 minutes. One of my friends had told me that acupuncture makes her feel like she's floating so I was expecting some sort of amazing experience but I didn't find it particularly relaxing. (And I couldn't help being reminded of that time Charlotte from Sex And The City tries acupuncture but can't quiet her mind).

Afterwards I went to work and at the end of the day I felt a bit itchy under my top below my neck, and while scratching I realised that the acupuncturist had forgotten to remove one of the needles!! So that also didn't exactly warm me up to the whole experience!

To be honest I suppose I just feel a little cynical about the whole thing and wonder if it's actually worth doing or if it's all just a placebo effect. I know some people rave about it but I think it's not for everyone. Spending the money getting a massage would be a lot more enjoyable and relaxing! I guess I could cut down on dairy a little but there's no way I'm giving up chocolate!

Monday, November 3, 2014

The spookiest night of the year #MicroblogMonday

Traditionally Germans don't celebrate halloween at all. However recently with the influence from other countries I've noticed this is starting to gradually change, but it's still not a big event here. Some kids might dress up and a few even go out trick or treating (in German Süßes oder Saures) but it's not something that they all do. There also wouldn't be any firework displays, bonfires or other halloween traditions such as bobbing for apples, pumpkin carving or barnbrack.

Halloween first originated in Ireland and then all the Irish immigrants introduced it to the States from where it became even more popular and widespread. When I was a child I always looked forward to the 31st of October when you would dress up and go around to your neighbours' houses collecting goodies.

I think it's a shame that it's not celebrated that much here but I guess the Germans have Fasching which is enough for them! We had visitors over from Ireland last weekend and we all got dressed up and went out to a halloween karaoke night in the local Irish pub, which turned out to be really fun! Where else would you get to see zombies rocking out to Bon Jovi?

How do you celebrate halloween?