Saturday, July 11, 2015

This past week was our last week in Graz.  On Monday we had our optional excursion to the Armory ("Zeughaus"), where the city has a large stockpile of arms from the middle ages and early modernity. Pictures of our trip to the Armory can be found here:
On Thursday we took our final language evaluation, after which many students needed a rest!

Also on Thursday night we had our farewell show, which we performed for the parents.  This show included a musical play.  Pictured here is the cast in costume (foreground) and the choir (background):

On Friday we departed Graz.  There were many sad yet warm good-byes before we set off for Vienna.

Now we have settled into our hostel in Vienna, and pictures from our first two days can be found here, including our visit to the Prater Amusement Park:

Note:  A special thanks to Gabi Jauregui for taking pictures on the Ferris Wheel, seeing how I was too acrophobic to do anything but stare at the floor while grasping the seat.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

This week begins our final week in Graz before our stay in Vienna.  Last week we went on a hike...

...and toured the castle Regiersburg, which is on top of a big hill,...

...and we followed that with a visit to the Zotter chocolate factory and the "edible zoo" on the grounds.

We also spent one afternoon in the park, where this building was with a stereotypically long German word, which means (I think) "general place for experiments with forms of art".

We wrapped up the week with a picnic on Independence Day!

More pictures from this week can be found here:

Sunday, June 28, 2015

With the completion of this week we are now over half way through our stay in Graz.  Time flies when you're having fun!  The big highlight of this past week was our excursion to the city Klagenfurt and a boat ride on the nearby W├Ârthersee.  In Klagenfurt we had a tour guide who brought his Dachshund with him for the tour.

More pictures can be found here:

Monday, June 22, 2015

After a trying weekend, the students are ready to excel in the third week of the program.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Although none of the IUHPFL students, host families, and faculty members were implicated in the attack yesterday, we are still saddened by this terrible act.  More details can be found here:

Despite the shock from Saturday, our school week has been very nice--and busy!  We began regular classes on Monday, had an optional jog on Tuesday, visited the park on Thursday for sports, and visited the nearby Baroque mansion Schloss Eggenberg on Friday.  On the premises of this Schloss were live peacocks, and student Jami Pfau (whose last name is German for "peacock") was especially excited.

Pictures from this past week can be seen here:

Sunday, June 14, 2015

This Friday we had a city tour of Graz.  In addition to seeing magnificent churches and solemn war monuments, we were treated to a private meeting with Gemeinderat Magister Klaus Fr├Âlich.  We were even privileged to go out onto the honor balcony, which is usually reserved only for important celebrities and politicians.

Additional pictures can be found here:

Thursday, June 11, 2015

After the trans-Atlantic flight to Amsterdam and another flight from Amsterdam to Vienna, it was time for the final leg of the journey:  the bus ride from Vienna to Graz.  Pictured here is the tired and jet-lagged team receiving a final chance to ask questions in English before switching exclusively to German, after which we left the airport parking lot.
On the first day with the instructors, the students received (among other things) their program cell phones.  Here we can see the team figuring out how to operate low-tech cell phones in German.
More adventures and more pictures to come!