Raymond is the best! He really is. Sometimes I think how did I ever get so lucky to find him? I mean he is willing to go along with all of my crazy ideas. It is like no matter what my next crazy adventure is he will be fine with it. Hmm...I just realized I don't have a next adventure planned out yet. I mean I have always had a goal to work towards - in high school it was get the heck out of PA for college and live somewhere I liked, then in college I made plans to hike the PCT, then after we did that was planning the wedding, then after that planning on moving to another country and now...now I am just happy being here in Berlin. Maybe Berlin will be the place that I love so much we don't leave...it is hard to say since it has only been 7 months, but still every day I think how much I love it here. Anyways whatever the next adventure I am sure Raymond will be up for it, he always is. I mentioned one time how a friend said I was lucky to find him and his response - he is happy I have given him the opportunity to do all this fun stuff. Who wouldn't want to? I said most people. I mean most people live near family and settle down and buy a house and all of that. Nothing wrong with that, but that just isn't me. We were made for each other!
Anyways on to fun things we have been doing. My birthday was the beginning of Jan and fell on a Thursday this year. Raymond told me earlier in that week that he had planned something for that Friday so I scoured the internets trying to find where I wanted to eat on my actual birthday. I really wanted something with rice noodles - pho or pad see ew, both of which are hard to find here that I can eat and are good. We tried this one Vietnamese vegetarian place near Raymond's work and well...it just is not very good. I was looking at found a different vegetarian Vietnamese place a little farther away, and though I couldn't find a menu all of the reviews raved about the place (even meat eaters were like go here!!!) so we went to check it out. I met Raymond at work and we headed down. It was just barely snowing all afternoon and we got to the restaurant and got a seat in the window so we could spy outside which was nice. I was a little apprehensive though as the menu looked the same as the other place, but they had a few more options. The food was amazing however so it was a great birthday dinner. I got my pho and it was fantastic! I mean if we lived closer to the restaurant I would go there all the time for pho. Like everyday for lunch. I love pho so much - if I could only eat one meal for the rest of my life I would pick pho. I love it so!
We were at dinner for quite a bit and then we headed home to watch My Little Pony A Very Charming Birthday as per tradition. I love it! The ponies in it are so silly and it is just wonderful. After that I wasn't quite ready for bed yet so I loaded up netflix to try and find something to watch. When it came up it was like which do you want Netflix or Netflix for kids and the for kids had She-Ra, Jem, and He-Man pictures so I was like oh man! She-Ra! So I of course clicked that one. Well then I had to see what my options were and there was this one, Wonder Pets, that had a photo of a gerbil or something with a cape and hat and I was all ??? I click into it and it has a duck and a turtle also and the duck has scissors and it looks strange in a great way so of course I had to check it out. Oh my goodness the show was amazing!! Seriously I love it. It is like opera for kids. There is the gerbil, duck, and turtle and they go and save baby animals (and sometimes plants...) and sing songs and it is seriously amazing. You should all check it out. Seriously. Raymond even likes it. We watched quite a few episodes and we sing the songs sometimes as it is fun. Or make up our own words to the songs like when we are waiting for the train I might sing about that. I cannot believe I have never heard of this show before. Favorite kids show now. Go watch it now!
So Friday I met Raymond after work again for birthday surprises! and he was being all secretive. Like he wouldn't tell me what subway stop we needed as I mean if he did I would have known instantly where we were going...because I know everything! So when I met him at his work station it was lightly snowing and nice. We went in the subway and took it one stop and we came out and it was like blizzard! Like everything was covered in snow and I was like instantly all white from it. I loved it! Best birthday surprise ever! Raymond was all I made it snow for you - see he is the bestest! So we walk a few blocks to where we are going and I still don't know what we are seeing. I mean it is art of some sort - but there are posters for the ballet and opera and musicals so it could be anything. Now a note about the dress of the patrons - I didn't think you could get more casual than Seattle when it comes to these things. Yes there are always a few really dressy people, but most people wear like business casual attire and there are some people who wear like nice jeans and a button down shirt or something. So casual, but not like sweats. Well Berlin...Berlin is like no one is dressed nice. Everyone has jeans and a t-shirt or sweats would be fine too, just whatever. There were a few people with business casual attire, but absolutely no one dressed really nice. It was odd, but apparently they don't dress up for these things here. So we find our seats and the place is not that big so really like all of the seats would be pretty good. There is a guy dressed up nicely sitting on the stage taking Polaroid photos occasionally and putting them in a box next to him. So it starts off with this one guy coming out on stage talking about how he is a dancer and the dancers are just puppets and I didn't get all of it, but I got the gist and was just like okay...like other dancers came out on stage too and the one guy got like shot and they poured the Polaroids on him and I was just like what the heck is this? But then it got better and turned into a real ballet and was actually really good. I don't think the dancers were that great, and they were all sooo young, but the ballet itself was amazing. They used all of the space in ways I haven't seen before and was just really cool. Like there was this one part where there was one lady dancing in the middle of the stage and the light is coming from a few light bulbs on the ground at the back of the stage. Then I was like are the lights moving? No they can't be that is odd...oh wait they are! How are they doing that? That is so cool! Then all of these dancers come out and are dancing with these lights and the way they were dancing was just really neat - like the way they blocked the lights sometimes and moved them around and it was just amazing. Then there in other parts there were dancers with like tutus, but instead of tulle their skirts were made from balloons wrapped in fabric. It was an odd choice I thought until the last scene with them where they let the balloons out and they floated around the stage. Really interesting and I really enjoyed it.
After the ballet we needed some food so we headed down to check out this Mexican place to get some margaritas for more birthday celebrations! I really liked the place and the margaritas were delicious. We got two seats at the bar as it was a bit crowded. It was that or share a table and I felt like sitting at the bar. Shortly after we got there two other people came and the waitress was just like you can share the table over there and they were just like no thanks, we will wait for our own table. They must not be from here as...we share tables all the time, especially if the place is full of people. That coupled with the fact that you can be at dinner for a very long time (at least 2 hours easy) plus it was Friday night and a bar and everyone is drinking...well you could be waiting a very long time for your own table. The bartender and servers were just like what is wrong with them? They could be standing there all night...why won't they just share the table? They were pretty funny about it. As it was we were there for quite a while and it wasn't until just before we left that those people got a table (and I think they got a table for 4, and then another couple came in and they still had to share so the wait was for nothing).
Saturday we got up and went to the store to get some fruit for smoothies and Raymond was just like what do you want to do for dinner tonight? I was just like leftovers? He was all what?!? But it is birthday weekend! I mean for my birthday we went to Paris for a week and ate so much great food and did so many fun things, the least we can do is have a birthday weekend here for you. See he is the best! So we hung out a little bit then in the early afternoon went to head down to a cafe for some treats - a place we hadn't tried before. Well we get there and they are closed until Feb. Boo! That is one thing about here - lots of places close for a winter break, and maybe a break in August, and maybe a break here and there. So we were close to the amazing pizza place we had found the prior week so we walked over there to get some pizza. As we are walking it is snowing and it is just lovely out. I was reading a few reviews of this pizza place and it is in Neukolln which we haven't really explored much. A lot of the reviews were just like it is in a bad place, I walked there from the subway stop at night one time and felt uncomfortable. I mean they passed a group of men on the street, and they are a man and they still didn't feel safe and so on about how sketchy the area is. So the first time we went I hadn't read the reviews yet and it was fine. It was dark and there were people on the streets, but there are people on the streets all over the place. It was fine. I don't know what these negative reviewers are talking about - I mean I wouldn't have an issue with walking from the subway to the pizza place by myself at night and just meeting Raymond there. I mean it was fine and the area I thought was actually kind of nice. Anyways we get to the pizza place and grab one of the last seats (sharing the table with someone else) and everyone had just ordered so it took forever to get our food (they don't have a big kitchen apparently). It was fine as the seats were in the window so we could spy out and watch the snow and just sit and chat. It was just a really nice afternoon, absolutely perfect, and the pizza was even better than our first trip. It is so good that I thought hmm...maybe we should move down here? But then you really think about it and it would suck for Raymond to get to work as there is no direct way and yeah it wouldn't work. But the pizza is that amazing.
After pizza we headed up to the West Side Gallery to check out some of the paintings on the old sections of the wall. We hadn't walked along there before and it was cold and snowy and I love it. We also stopped at Cupcake to get some brownies since we hadn't been able to find baked goods earlier, then headed back home to watch my favorite show - Schlag den Raab! It is a crazy show and lasts forever and I love it. It is one person who lives in Germany taking on Stefan Raab who is a celebrity here - he has a late night show and other such things. Usually they have a mental round (like put these companies in order of when they started, or where is x on a map of Germany?) followed by a physical round (like ice soccer!) and the physical rounds are usually pretty ridiculous. This episode was just alright - they didn't have many really ridiculous things which was unfortunate. I also thought the contender would easily beat Stefan as he was doing amazing and then all of a sudden he was done. The game last somewhere between 13 and 15 rounds, and they only made it to round 13 I believe. So it was fun to watch, but not the best episode we had seen.
Sunday we got up and went to see Skyfall - really it was the only movie I was like eh okay we can see it, I just wanted the popcorn. Well I was surprised by how much I liked the movie. I thought it was really really good, but not really like a normal Bond movie. I mean everything was like I could see it actually happening. It seemed more realistic than other Bond movies and I don't know I just really liked it. After the movie we headed back to the Vietnamese place we went on my birthday for more pho! It was a miracle that I waited 3 whole days before going back for more. Then back home for more Wonder Pets. All in all a pretty amazing birthday weekend. Really I think it was absolutely perfect. My favorite weekend in a long long time.
I guess we didn't really have many other exciting adventures. There was one night where Raymond went to a coworkers birthday party and I stayed home as I was really tired. Well he gets home at 5:15 am super drunk. I didn't mind, but I did say something about how late he was out the next day as that has been the latest yet, and he was just like but I left the party at 2:30! So he left the party and got on the tram to come home, but was talking with friends and missed his stop so he rode to the next stop. Then he got on the subway, but was feeling sick so he got off one stop before out stop. Well he gets the next train and somehow falls asleep in the 2 seconds between stops and wakes up on the opposite end o the line. Since it is is late he has to wait like 25 min for the next train back this way, and he was in the big park so it is not like there is traffic and he can hail a cab. So he finally makes it home almost 3 hours after leaving which is ridiculous! The following weekend we went to another coworkers party and it was pretty fun.
Let's see what else...well Valentine's day is like not really a big thing here. Yes there was like one display of candies in the grocery store, but it really was not a big deal. A few restaurants had signs out that they were having a special menu, but we went out for burgers (in Seattle we would always go to a dive bar for dinner and this was the closest we could think of) and while walking there I noticed most of the restaurants were empty. So it is just not a big thing.
I feel like I am missing stuff, but since I cannot think of it I don't know what else we have been doing. I have been working had learning jQuery and stuff and finished my course on it. I am going to try and practice making some websites and such and see how much I really know. Oh we also went to see Warm Bodies last weekend. I really wanted to see it as it looked so cute and funny and I think Raymond just likes going to the movies so he kept telling me we should go see my movie. We did and I loved it! It was so cute and funny and the one scene I just loved - I was laughing so much! It was so good, but somehow Raymond didn't really like it! I don't know how that is possible as it was sooo good! I just found it so humorous. So I got home and started reading the book thinking it would be better than the movie (like the almost always are) and...it was just odd. I didn't think it was funny or cute and it was just...weird. Like the zombies get 'married' and have kid zombies they look after and there is a school to teach the kid zombies how to kill people (because apparently kids cannot figure out how to bite people) and it was just...very strange. I didn't really like it. One of the only books that I like the movie more than the book. Oh well.
Well I guess that is everything. We are heading off to Seattle to visit our friends on Sat so I cannot wait! It should be fun and a nice trip and I cannot wait to see everyone again! Until next time when I will have all of our fun Seattle adventures!