In one week, I’ll be in Berlin attending my first blog conference, The Hive. Yvonne, the organizer of The Hive, invited all attendees to write 40 facts about themselves on their blogs so we can all get to know each other better before the conference. I don’t usually write very personal posts on my blog, but I thought I would give it a shot! I split up my 40 facts into my favourite categories – Travel, Life in Germany, Life in Canada and Food. I hope you enjoy my #40Facts4TheHive!
1. When I was on a school exchange in Beijing, China, I tried to call my parents in Canada using a washing machine card. I thought it was a calling card. It didn’t work.
2. My favourite European cities are Vienna, Stockholm and London. I love the capitals!
3. I met my German husband in Christchurch, New Zealand when we were both studying abroad in university. We’d both love to go back to NZ one day.
4. On my travel bucket list are definitely Scotland, Ireland and Thailand.
5. I have randomly bumped into my former roommate, my old high school gym teacher and the brother of an elementary school classmate in the following places: Baños, Ecuador, Beijing, China and Fraser Island, Australia. I guess the world is actually pretty small!
6. I’m crazy about the Olympics (especially the winter Olympics) and have seen live events in Beijing, China in 2008 and Vancouver, Canada in 2010.
7. I have gone river rafting on the Pacuare River in Costa Rica, skydived in Australia (and NZ) and rappelled down a waterfall in Ecuador. I can’t believe I did any of those things.
9. I rode on a moped in Taiwan and a motorcycle in New Zealand. Too scary to repeat!
10. But I rode on a donkey and 4×4 quad in Santorini, Greece. Too fun not to repeat!
Life in Germany
11. I have lived in Germany since July 2013.
12. My favourite German baked goods are Schinken Käse Croissants (ham & cheese croissants) and Amerikaner (black & white cookies).
13. I have never recycled so thoroughly in my life as I have since living in Germany.
14. I’m a fan of German Brotzeit (bread time), essentially eating bread with cold cuts and cheese. Also pickles.
15. I do not fully understand Germany (and Europe’s) fascination with the Eurovision Song Contest.
16. I’ve come to like sparkling water (Sprudelwasser). It’s pretty much everywhere. You have to specifically ask for still water (stilles Wasser) at a restaurant otherwise you’ll probably get sparkling water.
17. I’m a huge fan of the German transportation system. Put me on a U-bahn and I’m a happy camper.
18. I have only read one book in German so far for my C1 German oral exam, Die neuen Leiden des jungen W. by Ulrich Plenzdorf. I’m open to new reading suggestions!
19. Though I haven’t been to every major city in Germany yet, I’d have to say my favourites are Hamburg and Munich.
20. I don’t have a Dirndl (traditional southern German dress) but feel like I should probably get one!
Life in Canada
21. Some of my best friends are people I’ve known since kindergarten or elementary school.
22. Hearing the Canadian National Anthem gives me a lump in my throat. Especially during the Olympics (see #6).
23. It’s not uncommon to say ‘thank you’ to a bus driver when exiting a bus in Canada. I have to remember that it’s not really common to do this in Germany.
24. I once saw David Duchovny in Gastown (a neighbourhood of Vancouver) when I was a teenager. I talked about it for ages. I have never even seen an episode of The X-Files.
25. A TV commercial was shot at my friend’s dad’s farm in British Columbia. I got to check out the set and eat at craft services. They ripped out of bunch of her dad’s produce for the shot.
26. I have also seen TV and film sets at my alma mater, the University of British Columbia. They shot some episodes of Smallville and the movie X-Men Origins: Wolverine there. I get pretty geeky when I see film trucks somewhere. Vancouver is sometimes referred to as ‘Hollywood North’.
27. My favourite place in Vancouver is Kitsilano Beach.
28. I haven’t been to any Canadian territories or Saskatchewan. I must add those to the bucket list.
29. My favourite sports team is the Vancouver Canucks, a National Hockey League team. Still sad we lost the Stanley Cup in 1994. And 2011.
30. I only recently learned that the ‘Canadian tuxedo’ is denim on denim (shirt/jacket and jeans).
31. I love cooking and baking, especially trying new recipes. I’ve recently made homemade bagels, French macarons and Vietnamese Bánh mì sandwiches.
32. My favourite foods are Indian and Thai. And sushi.
33. Foods I miss from Canada are fresh corn from the Fraser Valley, Pacific salmon and my sister’s Rice Krispies Treats. I have quite a refined palate.
34. I love to shop at outdoor farmers’ markets when I get the chance.
35. I recently signed up for Foodie Pen Pals in Europe and it’s a blast!
36. The craziest things I’ve ever eaten are probably alligator, raw tua tua (NZ shellfish) and beef tongue. I did not know that I was eating beef tongue at the time. I found out a few hours later when my friend explained that what I was repeatedly ordering at the Korean Shabu Shabu restaurant was in fact beef tongue.
37. My current favourite snack is tortilla chips with homemade mango salsa.
38. I love German chocolate. It’s a magical thing.
39. I am always on the hunt for cheddar cheese, jalapeños, brown sugar and cilantro in Germany.
40. I love flipping through cookbooks and bookmarking new recipes.
Thanks for reading!