Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Venray? Travel booking?

We are all starting to acclimate over here. 

Classes are in full swing. Its nice to go down to the lounges and see people reading books for school, although I'm fairly sure that will get old fast. right? It always does. 

My ethics class seems pretty interesting. It's a lot about ethics and philosophy in the realm of biology. People tell me the professor, Bianca is pretty tough, which is fine. Although in class yesterday, many people were distracted by the fact that she wasn't wearing a bra. Immature, I know, but I do recall someone telling us this when we signed up for the class. Welcome to Europe?

Last time I updated, I mentioned that I was going to Venlo with a couple of people to check things out. OMPH. Did that turn into an adventure...
My friend Ben and I were going to go to Venlo, which is about 45 min away from the castle. We asked around at dinner, told people they were more than welcome to come, and that we were meeting to leave at 6:45. We got a group of about 10 together, everyone met us, and right as we were about to leave EVERYONE bailed out. I'm not quite sure what their reasoning was, (I think some wanted to say here and go to the bar, or too tired, or whatnot) but all the sudden it was just Ben and I. Which was fine because Ben is good company. While walking to the bus stop, we decided to just go and check out Venray (which is only 20 min away) instead. So we're sitting at the bus stop, it's FREEZING cold, and the bus just isn't coming. 
Finally after about 25 min we see the bus that we need, and when it pulls up, the driver opened the door and told us he was off duty so we needed to wait for the next bus that was coming in 5 min. 
Flash forward another 10 min. Ben and I are starting to freeeeeeze, so we decide to just call it a night and head back. I also realize that I couldn't find my strippenkart. Strippenkarts are bus tickets... they're kind of weird and hard to explain, but imagine a charlie card and a plain old ticket fused into one. Anywhoo, we start to walk back, pretty defeated, and we get about 40 feet down the street when we see the next bus coming, so we start to RUN down the street, and as we were running, I found the strippenkart! It had lodged itself between my arm and the sleeve of my shirt. We get on the bus, high five, and start to thaw out. The people giving us directions to Venray, told us to get off at the Venray station. So we see the stop for Venray station, get off the bus, and proceed to walk around, looking for a court yard to walk through, which apparently leads you to the center of Venray. There was NO courtyard in sight. Ben and I walked around for like 40 min looking for downtown Venray. We couldn't decide if the girl that gave us directions was high, or bad at giving directions or what, but all we knew is that we were cold and lost. Finally we saw a nice young man on the street and we asked him how to get to where we wanted to go. He laughed at us, and told us we were about 3 km away, and had to go to the Venray BUS STATION. Someone could have clarified that for us. WOOF. So we go back to the train station and waited for the next bus, which wasn't coming for another half hour. It was fun though. We played the movie game while we waited and laughed about how silly this night was turning out. Finally the bus came, and we took it the three more stops to Venray (at this point it was about 9pm) The reason that we kept going, and didn't turn back around to Well was because everyone told us that the shops and whatnot closed at 10. We had come this far and we wanted to at least have an hour in Venray before heading home. So we get off the bust at about 8:50 and walk into the center of Venray. NOTHING WAS OPEN. There was a group of middle school aged boys hanging out in the center of the square who told us that everything closed early on Mondays. 

All that Ben and I could do was laugh. At least we made it to Venray.

That was two nights ago. 
Last night was spent primarily planning our first weekend trip after Amsterdam. It was originally Switzerland, which has been pushed back a few weeks due to train issues, and is now Paris. The group of Switzerland people (Me, Katie Jo, Cherlynn, Stella, Rachel and Stephen) have split up for this weekend (Katie and Rachel are going to London, Cher and Stephen are going to Scotland, and Stella is going with someone else to Copenhagen) and I have decided to go to Paris with Justin, Rosie, Ashley, Kirin and Kelly. I am VERY excited, they are a fun group, and Paris feels like the perfect first destination. So we all sat around trying to figure out the best way to plan this trip... it was VERY stressful. We couldn't figure out how to book the trains because the instructions they gave us during orientation were very confusing, and the web sites were all in dutch, and we were busy crunching numbers trying to figure out what was the cheapest way to stay in the city. 
So far though, it seems to have worked out BEAUTIFULLY.
We rented an apartment, for three nights, right in the heart of Paris, and it only costs about 57 per person for all three nights, which is cheaper then any hostel we found, and way closer to all the action. I also called the train people and booked our trains, and everything was way easier then they made it sound. There was a reservation fee, but I was expecting that. So lalala. We are going to Paris in two weekends. YES!

Also, I pretty much worked out my travel plans for the rest of the semester. I didn't mean to, but they just worked out that way. Here is the tentative list:

1/30-2/01: Amsterdam (with school)
2/5-2/8: Paris (Justin, Rosie, Kirin, Kelly, Ashley)
2/13-2/15: Dublin (Katie Jo, Stella, Cher, Stephen, Rachel... and I think some others will also be there that weekend)
2/20-2/22: Switzerland (Rosie and Ashley) That's Carnivale so we want to be back on Sunday for the festivities. 
2/27-3/1: Vienna? (Somewhere with Michael, Hilary, Kayla, Lauren, Lily)
3/6-3/10: Prague with school
3/10-3/15: Travel Break- UK  (Stella and Bettina... AND RYAN AND LAURA COME FROM US!)
3/20-3/22: Copenhagen (MJ, Cher)
3/27-3/29: Berlin (Katie Jo and Bettina... Kappa weekend :) )
4/3-4/5: Barcelona (Katie Jo, Bettina, Ashley, Justin, Cher... a lot more people are going that weekend)
4/8-4/13 (Easter weekend): Greece (Katie Jo, Bettina, Cher, Michael?)
then the last weekend is Exams. then home. 

clearly this is all subject to change, but this is what it looks like for now. lalala. 

alright. I should get dressed and ready for lunch! 
Happy Wednesday!

1 comment:

  1. Omg I miss you. I'm excited for you and Paris, though I think I remember you saying you've been there before (?). Watch out for poothie smells on the train (ask Marita) and let me know if you eat any cheesy hot dogs from street vendors. Yumz.