A Christmas Carol

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Last Wednesday (the day before Thanksgiving) was hectic but fun - so very, very fun.

Let me back up to say that a few weeks ago my friend Anja (she teaches with me) told me she was taking her English class to see Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol in Nuremberg. She told me the play would be performed in English and, better yet, the tickets also served as train/bus tickets (and only cost 6.50€). This means that the play was free. Train tickets and bus fare from my school to Nuremberg and back home again would have exceeded 6.50€. I couldn't say no to this. But I also really wanted Kayla to come with me. I asked Anja if I could invite a friend and she agreed. I asked Kayla, who had to get permission from her au pair family first (since she'd be leaving in the middle of the week). I was so happy when she informed me they gave her permission! That was a few weeks ago...

Let me back up yet again to say that 2 Fridays ago, I left my tutoring session in Heroldsberg, was so excited for the weekend that I ran out the door after getting paid and left my binder inside. My binder is kind of essential to my well-being, or rather my professional well-being. It has every lesson plan inside and I had also stuck the tickets to the play in one of the inside pockets. I realized this on Tuesday night. The play was the following night. And the tickets were not in my possession. That meant I had to take the train from my school to Heroldsberg after coordinating with my student when I could pick it up. That was the hectic part.

I finally got my hands on the binder and then realized I had to wait another hour until the next train came. I decided to spend that time doing one of my all-time favorite activities: walking around the grocery store. I don't know why I love this so much, but I do. I guess I should specify it is only fun doing this in a foreign country. There is something so fascinating (to me, at least) about browsing through the shelves and reading the names of all the foods and recognizing certain products from home. I wandered around this grocery store for 30-45 minutes and I'm pretty sure the employees there thought I was shoplifting, since I sauntered down every aisle at least twice and left after purchasing only one bottle of water.

I finally boarded the train to Nuremberg (using my theater ticket as a train ticket!) so I could meet Kayla. I should explain that Kayla loves Starbucks more than any person I've ever met (I mean, she is from Seattle....). One time I actually imagined a scenario in which Kayla and I are supposed to meet each other in a city but one of our phones is dead (I imagine a lot of scenarios like this during long train/bus rides). I thought to myself, "If that ever happened, I would probably just find the nearest Starbucks and if I waited long enough, Kayla would appear". You can probably guess our meeting point in Nuremberg....

After we sat and talked for a bit in Starbucks, we stopped by a little cafe, ate some Italian food and then took the U-Bahn and tram to the theater. The play itself was so enjoyable - I was a little surprised at how entertained I was. There were 6 actors and 10 characters....you do the math. I was reminded of my sisters' and my childhood performances of our self-produced Christmas plays in which the brother or father (or any other male character) was conveniently "hunting" or "at war" or...dead. Since there weren't enough actors to play each role in A Christmas Carol, the dialog included lines like, "Well, she had to work late tonight, but she'll be back tomorrow"....or, "He just left to get the turkey, but he'll be back soon". There were also little to no props. When I first realized this, I turned to Kayla and whispered, "You don't think this is some kind of modern interpretation, do you?" because the empty stage gave off kind of a modern, artsy, avant garde-ish kind of vibe. She whispered back, "Seeing as how Bob Cratchet is writing with a quill, I don't think we have to worry about that".

The funniest thing about the play: I kept playing the Disney version in my head. Every time they'd say "Scrooge", I would automatically think "McDuck". And during the scene in which Scrooge's door-knocker turns into Marley's face, Kayla, Anja and I all three automatically envisioned Goofy's face as the door-knocker. Also, I was slightly annoyed that Tiny Tim wasn't played by Mickey Mouse's son.

Anyway, thanks for coming with me, Kayla!

Kayla said...

So true about Starbucks! So much love for it! Thanks again for inviting me, I had a great time! I just laughed out loud about the quill thing, I had forgot about that

Jan said...

It looks so cold there!! Glad you guys had a good time. I think that's so neat that you get to ride the train free with the ticket!!

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