Die Grenzüberschreitung

A place on the border between two or in this case between five countries where people can cross, have their passports checked and go through customs.

Although Frau Fee had not checked our passports, she encouraged us to exchange ideas, customs, and traditions from our homeland discovering what makes the world a special but small place to inhabit.


Naturally, a visit to the doctor’s Bibliothek could not be complete without a grammar lesson as bad habits were painfully corrected but accepted over the warmth of our company and a hot pot of tea.





To make a high-pitched sound or cry.

And so as one project comes to a close another one begins as construction on the squeaky-radio picks up speed at the Bessunger Schule.

Today the children learned what to and not to do when it comes to soldering and how important it is to listen and follow directions. Perhaps this lesson was really meant for one who gets his grammar tips from a diverse group of energetic, competitive and pleasing group of fourth graders as I realized the value in reaching a collective understanding in intercultural communication with the one who has a molten hot piece of metal in their hand.



Step by step the project will come to life and Herr Gruppe’s Model has given Goat to everyone wanting to listen to stations from around the world on their soon to be home-made radio.



Die Lebendigkeit

An atmosphere of excitement and activity.

Although the days are made dead by clouds and the nights cold, the city is coming alive from the warmth of the indoors as preparations are being made for the start of Advent this weekend; A time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas.



Salon Nachmittag in Alsbach-Hähnlein

November 26th, 2017

Taking advantage of the Rugetag in Darmstadt, I took the closest tram passing through Bessungen after the morning’s Gottesdienst and headed off to Alsbach.


Passing through the mountains I was overcome with peace to my thoughts as I sifted through ideas, notes, and conversations preparing for my next biofuels article.

Vaguely remembering the area from the time I had gone hiking here a handful of times with IGM and with colleagues from Merck I found the infamous sight that reminded me I was not far from the “Salon”.


Feeling at home back at Barbara’s I had the opportunity to meet her husband Jörg and discuss their tradition of hosting a “Salon” afternoon for over 8 years. Breaking out their journal they explained to me that in olden days before women were able to work they would get together for tea and cake in the afternoon to discuss various intellectual topics. Collecting dozens of conversations their book included everything from taste testing tea their guests brought from around the world to what soon become an intensive discussion about understanding how difficult cultures celebrate during the holidays or for a special occasion.

This conversation became interestingly flavored by a group of students from Morocco who explained the traditional gathering of 100s of extended family and friends for a wedding and the exchange of fruit and vegetables from their local region. Although they celebrate birthday’s acknowledging someone’s milestone was something unheard of to them. Despite our differences, we somehow seem to find common ground over sharing food and laughter with one another as I was refreshed to meet other students having the same desire to immerse themselves in the German culture in seeking to develop relationships with natives and foreigners alike.


Lasting or existing forever; without end.

Ewigkeitssonntag (Eternity Sunday) is a German Protestant religious holiday observed mainly in Lutheran churches to remember those who have died and those who have been born in the congregation.

A large candle is light for those who have passed away…


And a small candle is lit for those who were born…