Archive for June, 2007

This morning before work I rather abruptly decided to cancel my cable service. I had been mulling the idea over in my head for many reasons, such as to save money, to give me an incentive to read more, and even just to get it out of the way before I start the arduous process of moving out of my apartment. But today as I was making a grocery list (tonight I’m making a delicious peach pie), it occurred to me that today was as good a day as any to cancel. So cancel I did. I still had shows to watch on my DVR, but no more.

And now the cable box is gone, the space it leaves on my TV stand a subtle daily reminder of my limited time left in the States.

Incidentally, I didn’t realize how often I relied on that box for the time until it was gone. Might have to stick a clock there or something, as I’m now realizing just how frequently I relied on that time display while cooking.

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In just over a month I will be departing the United States to spend a year in Germany as a participant in the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals (which, due to its intolerably long name, will henceforth forever be referred to simply as “CBYX” on this blog). As the name suggests, the program is funded by both the US and German governments and is intended primarily as a cultural exchange for young adults. Part of my time will be spent in Köln (English: Cologne) taking intensive language classes with the hopes of improving my German. The last part of my trip–in fact the vast majority of it–will be spent somewhere in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern taking classes at a local university and eventually finding gainful employment.

I would be remiss if I did not mention my friend, classmate, fellow traveler, and co-participant Travis Thompson for giving me the idea to start a blog about the CBYX experience. And for letting me steal his map. You can read his blog here.

Like many things, I debated myself for quite some time as to whether starting a blog would be the ultimate in presumptuousness, vanity, and hypocrisy. I dislike when folks are ostentatious about their travels, and few people–myself included– are rarely genuinely interested in hearing about the exploits of others. Nonetheless, after much consternation and soul-searching, I decided to start blogging. My simple conceit is that I am writing this only for myself and any audience it may attract is ancillary…

…which, of course, is just a mental justification to allow me to
blog without any ex post dissonance. I hope to attract throngs of
loyal readers who will praise me for my genius.

Look for more frequent updates and continued eloquence as I near departure.

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