Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The evil number three

So the past two weeks I have been dealing with Apartment hunting with my two friends and I am telling you, its one of the most stressful things thats ever happened to me. Apartment hunting in NYC does not compare with any other city...especially when in a trio!

Some reasons why:
- Three bedrooms are not common in NYC and no we did not want a living room turned into a 3rd bedroom!
- Walk-ups especially to the 5th or 6th floor ( a few times in a row) took our last breath after long days in class
- With three people you can never decide on a place - well when you do, the apartment was just taken by someone else.
- Three people, well in our case of course have their bank accounts with three different banks which means running to three banks for the downpayment money
The complications of three continues.....

But at last we have found a place and i know very soon the day will come when we will all three laugh at the entire stress we endured.
That is once we have the keys and lived through IKEA hell!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Home Sweet Home

Here I am the German girl, but back home I am the American girl. I have always accepted yet have been confused with my own identity...

My Minorities in the Media course this semester has got me thinking... 

I was born in Munich, Germany -- partially raised there and somehow never left, even when my family moved to the States. I attended an International School where I was taught in both English and German, and later in Spanish. I returned home every single summer-- sometimes even in the fall for Oktoberfest and winter and spring and I always had a Dirndl (Bavarian traditional dress) in my closet. I was German and America could not robb me of that.

Somehow I never felt I was being Americanized even if my German friends thought so. I remember loving living in both worlds and having two identities ( well thats what i believed). But then it hit me....

I had at some point lived in the US for quite a while, even became an American citizen (after having had the Green card- which was actually pink) but yet home for me was still Munich.

I left Germany leaving behind a couple of dear friends -- but now my group of friends has grown. Despite me having lived in the US, with dear friends at school -- every time I have to leave my german friends, I felt I would be separated from them for too long.

I count down the days until my next trip back home, but sometimes I wonder what would it all be like if I move back? Maybe the excitement is because I am gone?

A part of me never left, but a part of me was molded here in America. I sometimes don't know where I belong. Even though I am German and always will be, I am also American -- at least according to my friends and dual citizenship. But in the end of the day you are who you are -- and thats where you feel most like yourself.

In the end home is where the heart is. And i guess my heart never left my hometown of Munich, Germany.

NYU Expo Fashion Show

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Remembering 9/11

Just like people were asked where they were when Kennedy was shot, we are asked where we were on Sept. 11, 2001.

It's a day that will forever be remembered. A day that took many lives but also brought America together.

That day I was sitting in my seventh grade English class, just like any regular school day. But in a matter of minutes my world turned upside down. Much of it remains a blur to me.

Knowing that my Dad was supposed to be on a plane to New York City the morning before, to have a meeting roughly around 9 a.m., that morning of Sept. 11, 2001, shook me. But that was not all that was worrying me. My brother had just started his freshmen year at George Washington University, located just behind the White House and was locked into his dorm room.

There I was confused like no other and completely puzzled with what had just happened and my heart was beating like crazy not knowing if my Dad and Brother were ok.

To be quite honest with time that day just faded for me and I never really thought much about it.

Between that day and today I had made many visits to the World Trade Center site - but more to see the progress than to remember the past. But my visit to the Tribute WTC Visitor Center last week brought up old and new memories. It opened my eyes as I shed a few tears.

Having lost my brother just two years ago, I could relate with those who were robbed of a loved one that day.

It was the panoramic collage of faces smiling at me that hit me. There I stood thinking why did these innocent souls have to die? For them it probably did not seem like they were at the wrong place at the wrong time – until it was to late. It could have been me and it could have been you, as scary as it sounds. And that’s what I realized when I listened to the stories.

For $10 I took a two-and-half hour audio tour, around the sixteen acre site where the symbolic twin towers once stood. Sixteen heartbreaking stories brought me a step closer into the lives of those who had been there firsthand.

The voices resonated within me and it seemed like a bad movie playing in front of me. I imagined the“blood curdling screams," the blood dripping from the windows and the enormous grey cloud that filled the air, that September day.

Whether they were a survivor, lost someone dear or were a firefighter who found one of the 2,749 bodies -- they each have a story to tell. A story of loss, survival and or trauma, forever linked to 9/11. 

But what makes this a universal tragedy is that it connected million of hearts all over the world. It united America as half a million volunteers came out and lend a hand. 

Monday, March 22, 2010

German Chancellor Portrait

Pictures of the Week: An employee of the Castle Neuhardenberg museum holds a portrait of German Chancellor Angela Merkel painted by artist, Ommo Wille. The painting is part of a larger exhibit entitled, DUCKOMENTA. Read more:,29409,

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Chai Tea

It’s my new obsession: Chai Tea/ Chai Tea Lattes

A sweet, spicy and milky warm drink…

In its most basic form, chai is black tea that is brewed strong with a combination of spices (cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, pepper and ginger) and is diluted with milk and sugar.
Here is a simple recipe to make chai tea at home. This is what you will need:
1 1/2 cups of water
1 1/2 inch stick of cinnamon
8 whole cloves
1/4 inch fresh ginger root (sliced thin)
2/3 cup of milk
6 teaspoons sugar
3 teaspoons of Darjeeling Tea leaves
Place water, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and ginger in a pot and bring to a boil.
Cover and lower heat to low setting and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add milk and sugar and again bring to simmer.
Next, add the tea leaves, remove from heat and cover.
Let steep for 3 minutes and strain.

* For a real chai tea latte however, make the tea and then add the milk from a coffee machine milk steamer, for a frothy texture.

* Usually served hot but can also be served over ice