I was hoping this first post would be able to document the orientation weekend that starts the semester in Vienna. And the day and a half of said Orientation I attended was great: there is so much information, such a lovely hostel, and so many friendly people. However, if you're me, you get sick the second day and go to see the doctor and get antibiotics and painkillers. Then you stop being able to get out of bed for 2 days, a different doctor comes to see you, and you end up in the hospital in Graz with Mono and a secondary infection. So this post is going to be more about Austrian hospitals than the splendid town of Deutschlandeberg (with castles and vineyards and a quintessentially European feel).
All I can say, is this hospital is great!
The nurses are very friendly (and why not since they're sporting very comfy looking Birkenstocks). Even though I only speak minimal German, they're able to communicate in English and they understand my Deutschlish. I've bee prescribed a special kind of tea to gargle with to help my throat and none of the nurses can figure out the English word for gargle (understandably so, it is sort of specialized), so I've gotten to hear all the nurses do their impressions of gargling. Also, the language barrier isn't such a terrible thing; I asked for ice cubes the other day and got ice cream instead, and I'm sure not complaining!
The room I'm sharing with three other women is bright yellow with nearly floor to ceiling windows, and bright orange and yellow curtains over them. It is very bright and cheery in here. It isn't cold or sterile like an American hospital would be. IES has been really wonderful about my illness. There is always someone here to keep me company, and they took care of insurance stuff and school stuff.
Now that I'm actually on the mend, I'm getting more excited about being in Austria. When I was dying in the hostel basement, I didn't want to be here at all, but now that everything is clearing up, my attitude is also more optimistic. I know this is wreaking havoc on my poor mother too, but alas, I'd much rather she visit when we can enjoy Vienna together and not have to lay about in my house. It would be one thing if I wasn't improving, but I am, so I think it is best that she stay in the States.
So don't y'all worry. I'm swallowing beverages and eating food again and slowly gaining back my strength. I'll be ready to face Vienna in no time at all.