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November 6, 2012

I’ve always been a solo runner. When I first got into running a few years ago I used to love going out alone at night, -20 celsius in the capital of Freeze-your-butt-off-land (aka Ottawa, Canada) and pound the pavement almost everyday for an hour. It was exhilarating and somehow I got hooked. Maybe it was a little masochistic, but I enjoyed myself.

While training for the Half Marathon last year, I did it on my own. For me, running was my thing. Me (well, me and my headphones) time to be alone and enjoy the ride. 

Then last May a friend told me about Nike’s Club der Töchter, a running group for girls completely organized by Nike in Vienna that takes place each year in April/May, so I checked it out. How it works is you head onto the Facebook page, join the group, find yourself an ambassador who organizes runs in your neighbourhood, and make a date to join in a group for a run! It was completely free of charge, you get a cool t-shirt, meet new running buddies, attend cool events (one night we got to go to the Nike store in Vienna after-hours and shop with 30% discount while sipping Prosecco from a can – how badass is that?) and a spot in the annual Frauenlauf (Women’s run) in Vienna. All you gotta do is run around in a Nike shirt, which I do most of the time anyway so it wasn’t that big of a deal.


I’m the one in the front awkwardly high-fiving the air.


I had a great time with Club der Töchter and am planning on applying to be an ambassador this year!

I recently found out about another Lauftreff (running meet-up) organized (for free! Woohoo!) from the Vienna City Marathon. It happens every two weeks on a Sunday at 9am, and it is to practice the “long slow runs” that are so key in Marathon training. So last weekend instead of heading off to a post-Halloween party, I dragged my butt home to bed and went to sleep like a good girl. 


There I am in white with my trusty blue shoes, listening attentively before the run.


Los geht’s! Off we go!

I only did one round, we had the option of doing one round (7km) two (14km) or 3 (21km). Next time I’ll aim for two!

So I have learned to enjoy running with others, be it in a running meet up (the KMs fly by when you’re chatting with new people) or with friends (chasing my guy friends has proved to be a challenge, they’re all much faster than I am) as well as still enjoying my own me-time runs.

Hauptsache: laufen laufen laufen!

Main point: run run run!



I’ve moved to

January 22, 2010

Yay, I’ve gotten a .com website for my blog! Please update your bookmarks to:

I’ll see you guys over there!

Deciding on my Major

January 21, 2010

For over a year now my sights have been set on studying Transkulturelle Kommunikation (Translation and Interpretation) at the University of Vienna. You study in three languages: your native language, and two working languages, one of which has to be German if your native language is not German.

Now that it’s nearly a month before I start studying and I am finishing up the application process, when it came to filling out my “Angaben zum beabsichtigtem Studium” (Proposed field of study) I started to write the “T” of “Transkulturelle Kommunikation”, but then stopped. Don’t get me wrong, I would be VERY happy to study Transkulturelle Kommunikation, but I just want to make sure there isn’t anything else I would be REALLY REALLY happy to study. (or maybe I am just afraid of the entry test I would have to take in March that appears to be incredibly hard!)

One thing I know is that I absolutely want to study something to do with languages. When I took my first German class in University nearly three years ago, it was the first thing to really spark my interest and motivate me. It made me excited to go to class. My “problem” now is, there are a few interesting options at the University of Vienna, and I am not sure exactly what is the absolute best for me!

I have been thinking for the last year that I want to be a translator or interpreter, which I would still very much enjoy and has the benefit of being a mobile job that has to do with languages (living in three countries in the past three years has made me realize that my life is a bit unpredictable, and it seems to be working quite well for Benny!), but I am also thinking I would like to be a language teacher, or write books about languages and language learning, or write for a magazine like Deutsch Perfekt, or work at a company like Hueber or Langenscheidt and make language learning materials, or get a PhD and be a professor of languages or linguistics. (Maybe I could do it all?) 🙂

I was thinking earlier that I was going to do a double major of Transkulturelle Kommunikation and Romanistik, which is the study of the romance languages. I posted on the student council forum of the Translation department asking if this was a good idea, and someone recommended that I not do that because it might be like studying the same thing twice. (Well, someone else wrote that it would be find because the more language study the better, haha.) But they mentioned that to improve my future job outlook as a translator or interpreter that I should pick a second major in a specific field like medicine or engineering so that I could be a specialized translator and be more desirable to employers. While this does sound reasonable, I don’t really have any other interests besides languages right now which is making me think that I should study something other than translation? Or maybe not? Or maybe pick a different language other than Spanish because every translator and their mother uses English, German or Spanish? Argh.

But I also think I would like to stay here in Austria for as long as possible, and something is telling me that trying to work as a non-native German teacher in a German-speaking country might not exactly go so well! While being a translator would work out better…

Here are my options:

Deutsche Philologie (German Philology – study of German language and literature)
Romanistik (Romance studies – study of Romance languages and cultures)
Transkulturelle Kommunikation (Translation and Interpretation)
Sprachwissenschaft (Linguistics)
Bildungswissenschaft (Education science)

Possible combos:
– Deutsche Philologie und Sprachwissenschaft
– Transkulturelle Kommunikation und Sprachwissenschaft
– Romanistik und Sprachwissenschaft
– Deutsche Philologie und Pädagogik

Translation and Linguistics could be cool?

This post is mostly just for me to get my thoughts out of my brain and to actually see the pssible combinations on “paper” and think about which is best for me, but if anyone has any imput or experience with studying something language related then please leave a comment!

The city of Languages, an online game by the Goethe-Institut

January 20, 2010

I’m still here! It’s the week in between my two German exams, so I’m a bit all over the place. I had the written part last Sunday at 9:00am and had to get up at 5:50am for the bus! The oral part is this Saturday morning at 9:25am, so it will be a similar waking-up-before-six-on-a-saturday-and-then-write-an-important-exam story! I’m not too worried about it though, I need to describe a picture and talk about my hometime. Fingers crossed all will go well! On top of that, I’ve been having a bit of writer’s block lately, hopefully that will fix itself soon enough!

As a little treat, here is a fun little language trivia game called “The city of Languages” brought to you by the Goethe Institute. I tweeted about it awhile ago but felt like looking it up and playing it again, hehe. Enjoy!

I’ll be messing around with the layout…

January 14, 2010

I’ll be messing around with the layout for the next day or so, and since I am quite the blog design n00b, I don’t know how to make a test page so I will just be editing the main page! So ignore anything broken on this main page for the next day or so!

My online ÖSD German resources

January 7, 2010

I’m currently preparing for my ÖSD B2 German exam, which is next weekend! Ack! I’m sure it will be okay, but it’s still a bit nerve-wracking!

I thought that I would share some of my online German resources on here. (It will also help me keep track of them to list them all in one place!) I hope those of you out there learning German will find some of these links useful. They are largely Austrian-based sources, but there are some sources from Germany as well. If you know of any other good online German resources, please leave a comment! 🙂


Online Austrian radio:
Radio OE1
Radio OE3
Radio FM4

These are the three stations that I listen to the most, FM4 is my favourite but unfortunately there is a LOT of English, especially in the morning. I try to have one of these constantly running in the background.

For a great list of where you can listen to German radio (from Germany, Austria and Switzerland) online, click here.

Deutsche Welle
Video-Thema – Short videos with transcripts and comprehension questions.
Langsam Gesprochene Nachrichten – Daily international news headlines in German, spoken slowly.
Top-Thema – Audio and text with comprehension questions and vocabulary list at the end.

There are a LOT of other great German resources on Deutsche Welle, it is a must visit for German learners, from just-starting-out to advanced.

For a list of other online places to watch German TV and other videos, click here.

Schlaflos in München I have recently started to listen to this podcast. I’m a big fan of Annik’s Slow German podcast, definitely check them both out!


Online Austrian news websites:
Der Standard

German websites for learners of German:
Deutsch Perfekt

Frankfürter Allegemeine Zeitung – Germany’s New York Times

For a great list of German news websites click here.


So far I do all of my foreign language writing practice on Lang-8. If you aren’t familiar with Lang-8 I suggest you click that link now!

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Twitter accounts to follow for language learners and lovers!

January 6, 2010

@faisal_idris sent me a tweet with the idea to make a blog post about Twitter accounts that regularly post about language learning, which I thought was a great idea! I decided to just make a list without descriptions, since you can easily click on the links to see some examples of the kinds of things each account posts about and I’d rather post as many Twitter accounts as possible instead of cluttering up this post with descriptions! I am sure that I am missing a lot of language related Twitter accounts since these are only the ones that I know and follow, so if you know of any other ones (in any language at all!), please leave a comment and let me know!

Here are some of my favourite language related Twitter accounts, I tried to categorize them as best as I could, but if you disagree on any of my choices, leave me a comment! 🙂

General language learning:

Language facts:

Translation and Interpretation:

Language blog Twitter accounts:







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