17 December 2014

A German Accomplishment

So I have been living here in Berlin for more than two years now. And recently, something made me realize that I have been here for quite a bit of time already, which is definitely not a bad thing. See, a few months ago, I was conducting experiments in my lab. I was doing an experiment which required German participants, and for the most part, most of my experiments are actually conducted by my research assistants, but this time, I had to conduct some of the sessions myself. And that means that I had to speak in German. Later on, I realized that it was a little accomplishment of sorts, as I didn't realize until then that my German was good enough to actually conduct science in it.

15 December 2014

Weekend in Warsaw

Back in October, there was a long weekend, where Friday was a holiday. So we opted to head out of town for a little bit, and since we didn't want to go far, we opted to just go next door to Poland. I've been to Szczecin twice in the past, but that city was very minor, and was pretty much just a day trip from Berlin. We wanted something a little bit longer than that, so we decided to book train tickets and head to Warsaw.

13 December 2014

War Against Freeloaders

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you probably know that I have been a member of the Couchsurfing community. I have been a member of this community for a couple of years now, and I have both surfed in foreign homes, as well as hosted strangers needing a place to stay in Berlin. Couchsurfing, at least the way I understand it, is a hospitality exchange, where one not only receives benefit from the community, but also gives back benefit to the community.

Except that recently, it has been less and less so.

11 December 2014

East Coast Adventure: New York Transit Museum

Aside from the Cloisters, another place in New York City that we visited (and I haven't photographed yet) was the New York Transit Museum. It is located in Brooklyn, in an unused subway station. Hence, one needs to go downstairs underground to visit this museum. It was very educational, tackling the history of the New York Transit system, as well as displaying historical trains and other instruments that are important in running the city's transportation.

09 December 2014

Arditti Quartet

I love modern and contemporary music. So when I saw the calendar in the Berliner Philharmoniker, and saw that the Arditti Quartet was coming to Berlin to perform, I didn't hesitate to buy tickets. After all, the program that night involved names that I never heard before, such as James Clarke, Jonathan Harvey, Julian Anderson, and Gyorgy Kurtag, in addition to Gyorgy Ligeti.