Everyone is here at last!! John & I went to the airport to pickup Rashmi & Andrew today. It was warming to see how excited the three of them were to be back in Germany again, since each of them studied here for some time. Although it was freezing and raining all day, everyone was in the best of spirits.
We split into three groups tonight: some stayed and slept, some went to see some eccentric Frankenstein piece, and Janet, Andrew, Michelle, & myself went and watched a 'show' about transvestites in Turkey. We went into a domed tent, & there were six small screens set up, w/ only two stools in front of each. We each chose a place to start; the videos were only 5-10 minutes long each, and after each finished, we'd get up and rotate to the next. AND! I could read all of the german subtitles! When we had finished the the six videos, we moved to the center of the room w/ the artists themselves (now honestly, where could you sit w/ the artists in the states?), where we were offered baklava & turkish coffee! Not gonna lie; Michelle and I were being quiet during the discussion, and the woman acknowledged that we are of a different generation, and she wondered what we would do if our children were transvestite. Michelle, wonderful as always said she just wants any kids she has to be happy. I'd like to imagine I'd be the same way, but at my age, I can't imagine having children.
After this 'meet & greet', the four of us went and watched a play, which, even Janet claimed was, "Not enjoyable to watch," but it was indeed unlike any play I've ever seen before. The play sort of followed the history of the vietnamese in Germany, and how they had to change themselves to continue to be marketable as times changed. It was interesting how they used personal stories from the characters to intertwine german history w/ the vietnam war and whatnot. Their singing in german was great, however I found the general background music to be annoyingly distracting.
To wrap up the evening, the four of us went and got baked cheese, dessert, & hot chocolate, after which we exchanged Andrew for Sophia, and the new four of us went and saw Brandenburger Tor.
Tomorrow we get to meet our tutees for the first time, & we get to see Gilles again--always a hoot (I say this after only having met him twice)! I think we are all excited to meet our tutees!