So tomorrow I leave for Germany! Well, technically tomorrow I leave for Toronto for 6 days, then Germany form there. But still, I begin my journey to the Fatherland tomorrow. I't very exciting knowing that I'm about to change my life in this huge, major way. I feel very unprepared, but it's my own damn fault. I've been SEVERELY slacking on keeping up with Duolingo practice. My host family booked me into language courses already starting next week, but I really wanted to have a bit of a head start on the whole thing.
I'm not as excited about Toronto, but I don't think it's in the same ballpark as living in Germany for a year. It will be really nice to see my dad's side of the family again, and to see all the beautiful land around Ontario's capital. We are going to a baseball game basically straight off the plane which will be really great. The only live sporting event I've ever been to before are hockey games, which I really love going to. You really don't go to a live game to watch the play, you get way better angles and replays at home on the TV, plus you can watch in your underwear. No, you go to a live game for the environment, for people standing and cheering at everything that happens, and for the hot dogs and extremely overpriced stadium beer. I've never been a big baseball watcher, but everyone I've ever talked to that has been to a live game, whether they love baseball or not, has said that it's really quite an enjoyable experience.
After a couple days in downtown Toronto we'll head out to Mount Forest to visit the family for the next 3 days. The last time I was in Toronto was probably 9 or 10 years ago for one of my Uncle's 80th birthday, so I'm really glad I'll get the opportunity to see them all again. I have a really terrible memory already for things that happen in my life, and being nearly a decade ago I've already forgotten almost everything about visiting last time. Most of what I remember are the big events or the really cool things I saw. Like eating dinner at the top of the CN tower, or going to look at some of the huge windmills that my family has on their property. Obviously people always remember the embarrassing stories, so the thing that sticks out most in my mind is where we went to eat right after we got off the plane.
It was a late flight that we came in on, so it was dark when we got in the car to head out. My cousin who picked us up from the airport asked if we had eaten yet, which we hadn't. Since it was late we just decided to hit up a Tim Hortons on the way back to the house. We pulled up and I dragged myself out of the car and inside. I may be embellishing my details a bit here, as one is prone to do with old memories, but I distinctly remember walking through the door and doing one of those full body yawns where you stretch your arms into the air and arch your back. I stepped up to the counter and the guy manning the till did his whole "Welcome to Timmies" spiel, asking what he could get for me that evening. I, in my infinite wisdom, proceed to order a footlong roasted chicken sandwich on white bread. He looked at me for what felt like a full minute before my overtired brain kicked into drive and realized what I said. My face went red, I made up some excuse about eating so much subway recently that I forgot where I was, and promptly ordered a ham and cheese sandwich.
It's pretty crazy what your brain decides to latch onto for memories, and we can't even really be sure that everything we remember actually happened. Our brains constantly change information and fill in the gaps with things that seem right, but may not have happened. In another 5 years I'll probably remember that story completely differently, but the beauty of modern technology and blogging is that I'll be able to go back to this day and find out how my past self remembered it.
I'm a bit annoyed about having to pack around all the bags for Germany with me in Toronto. I could easily just pack a carry on for 5 days away from home, but I don't think one bag will last me for a year in Germany. Besides, I'm taking my guitar with me to Europe, so since I'm already checking one bag it's not a huge deal to check another.
Thanks for reading! I'll be updating my blog every day from now on with at least a few words about how my day went, or what I'm doing on the weekend, etc. Things should get interesting when I get to Germany, there will be a lot to get used to, and a lot to write about.