On Tuesday morning, I got up before everyone else in my room, despite the drinking the night before. Lots of water before bed is the trick. The reason for my early rising was that I wanted to go outside and search for interesting birds, since we’re somewhat out in the country, in an area surrounded by forest.
I took a 1 hour walk through town, finding 15 species of wintering birds. Several houses that I walked past had bird feeders in the back yard, which attracted a variety of small finches, and the surrounding trees had plenty of Eurasian Jays, which are quite nice to look at, although they make quite an obnoxious noise. I also found some beautiful Great Spotted Woodpeckers, which have deep red ventral feathers that are brightly visible as they fly.
During the day, we went over to the school that we’re using as a “convention center” for our little conference. We browsed through 100 or so Esperanto books at the Libroservo, and looked at the day’s program of events. There were several workshops happening on a variety of topics, although that afternoon seemed to be crammed with all of the events that I had little interest in. Most of what interests me is happening later in the week.
Instead, I went back to the hostel and hung out with some friends, and we worked together to produce a new spreadsheet to help track our language studies for the coming year. We discovered some new tricks, such as having certain cells of the spreadsheet change color at various intervals as the number of practice-hours goes up, indicating when I’ve passed various goals. We also developed a little formula to calculate a 7 day average of progress, so that we can also try to keep our average speed above a certain level.
In the evening we stumbled upon a juggling workshop in one of the rooms downstairs, and joined in for a while. Over the next few days there are plenty of little workshops that I’d like to attend, including some language workshops… particularly the introduction to Dutch taught by a young octoglot from the Netherlands.