Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Case of the Missing S-Bahn

Today after work, I was waiting on the platform in Mögeldorf, waiting for the S bahn to take me back to Lauf, when lo and behold it never shows.

Some woman's voice comes over the loud speaker and says in a very polite German way, "Blah blah blah (German I can't understand)... nach Lauf... blah blah blah... bau arbeit.... blah... vielen dank."

Of course not understanding the majority of the announcement, I keep waiting, thinking it was probably just saying the train is running late. I wait and wait... and soon another announcement comes on saying the same thing, only this time "nach Nuremberg"... and all of a sudden, the somewhat crowded platform full of Germans, young and old, start grumbling loudly, and all disappear down the steps.

Now I'm alone on the platform with one old man who keeps talking to himself and saying something like "I'm not from Germany. I'm not from Germany.", a teenage boy who had fallen asleep on the bench listening to his mp3 player, and a woman with curly blond hair who was trying to read the train schedule.

Of course, now the butterflies in my stomach are starting to flutter, because I want to ask her a question and either a) I have to ask if she speaks English and if she says no, walk away shamefully or b) try to formulate my question in German. I decide to attempt the latter... so I step forward and say in my most convincing German accent, "Entchuldigung, Warten Sie fur der Zug nach Lauf oder Nürnberg?"

When we figured out that the train wasn't coming, we went to go find a bus, and then in the end waited at the bus stop, in the cold, eating Leibniz Keks mit Dunkel Schokolade, for her husband to come pick us up.

She didn't speak English, I spoke broken German, but somehow we managed. Of course I didn't understand everything, and I certainly couldn't speak in such fabulously constructed German sentences but we managed to communicate well enough, that I got to know where she was from, what she does for a living, about her family, where she goes on vacation every year, etc. etc. I could tell her why I was here and where I was working and the likes. It was such a liberating feeling to be able to communicate my thoughts to her... and for her to understand. Breakthrough. At last.

After her husband dropped me off in the parkplatz in Lauf and I walked the five minutes back home, I felt incredibly proud of myself... I managed to survive a very awkward and uncomfortable situation (no train & no way home) all on my very own, in a new language.

(pat on back to self)

Anyways, this is the last week of October. I seriously feel like I just wrote an entry saying it was the last week of September. Despite how fast time is going, I'm enjoying my life here in Nuremberg.

So to all my blog followers and readers, until next time, take care.


  1. Woot woot!! Gluckwunsche, Diana!!!

    (Totally translated that on Google :P)

    You give me hope that us Jersey girls CAN make it in Europe!!

  2. So proud of you meine Suesssigkeit!!!