Das Wattenmeer: Exploring the mud flats of the North Sea coast

At low tide, the North Sea coast is a sea of mud. From the Netherlands to Denmark, the slope of the sea floor is shallow, resulting in huge differences in the water level between the tides. At low tide, the water peels back, sometimes as much as 15 kilometers, revealing acres and acres of intertidal mud flats. This is known as the Wadden Sea, or Wattenmeer in German, and it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Das Wattenmeer, or the Wadden Sea, pictured here off the coast of Cuxhaven, Germany. Despite how far from shore I am, the water is only at most a few inches deep.
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The Quarantine Diaries, Day 50: Loosening up

There’s a war waging worldwide, and it’s between those people who want to re-open society and those who advocate for more caution to prevent a second wave of the virus. States such as Washington, California and New York as well as German chancellor Angela Merkel are on one side. Most of the Deep South, the Midwest, the individual German states, and US President Donald Trump are on the other.

which states are reopening may 6 2020
The New York Times is publishing an interactive map of which states are re-opening and which aren’t. This is the status from 6. May 2020.

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The Quarantine Diaries, Day 29: The New Normal

I had to check the calendar to see how many days it’s been. Working from home, staying in, and seeing nobody but my boyfriend has become the new normal. Streets are quiet, shops are closed, and going to the supermarket is a rare and dangerous undertaking. Despite the dark circumstances for human society, spring is relentless. The days grow absurdly longer, birds and plants and flowers are out in full force, and the ridiculously sunny weather belies the darkness of the situation. It is hard to feel too sad, or take the situation too gravely, when the sun is shining. Continue reading “The Quarantine Diaries, Day 29: The New Normal”

My first German sauna experience

Saunas are a popular winter pasttime in northern Europe. The steam and heat are the perfect antidote to the darkness and the cold, which sap your energy and leave you tense and shivering all the time. Though many of my friends spoke fondly of their sauna experiences, I had somehow never been invited to one, and I was too nervous to go on my own. But when a dear friend from the U.S., Kel, came to visit me in Hamburg in November, it was the perfect opportunity to try.

Holthusenbad_Eppendorfer_Stube
The sauna called “Kaffeestube” (coffee shop) at Holthusenbad.

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