Monday, June 8, 2015

Day 8 - Homeward Bound! also titled A Day of "Lasts"

Our day began this morning before most of yours ended last night. We were up by 5 am (10 pm at home) in order to head to the airport in Munich. After our last European breakfast, we got on the bus for the last time to head to the airport. After a long and rainy drive, we got to the airport and got through security more quickly than I expected we would. After an hour or so of waiting, we boarded our flight back home! A 10 hour flight from Munich to Atlanta. Some of us slept. Some of us enjoyed the entertainment system. Some of us did both. Jeff and Phillip watched five movies each (we don't need no stinkin' sleep!). After a long, arduous flight, we finally made it back to the good ol' USA, "the land of the cell service and the home of the air conditioning" (I think that line is ver batem in some patriotic song somewhere...). Customs took a little while, but we all made it through and got our luggage to  head home!!! We were all still full from the plentiful meals on the plane, so we didn't stop for dinner, but came straight home, and got home about two hours ahead of schedule! All the boys are with their parents now, and they and the chaperones are headed home. Jeff and Phillip most likely will be good for nothing for the next 12-16 hours, so........ 

What a wonderful trip! This truly was an amazing experience for all of us. Well done boys!

Pictures from the last few days hopefully will come soon. 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Day 7 - Regensburg

Today was our last full day in Europe! :( It was a wonderful day, though. We started out the morning singing for Mass in the beautiful St. Peter's Cathedral in Regensburg. Such lovely singing in such a lovely place! After the service, we went with our chaperones to find lunch on our own. We then gathered back together to rehearse for our evening concert, and after rehearsal we split back up again for gelato (as one of the older boys put it: "Gelato is ice cream's better-looking older sister."). After we finished gelating (it's a word now. I just made it one.), we came back to the hotel for some much-needed NAP TIME! Oh, how we (read: Jeff and Phillip and the other chaperones) love nap time! We had a good, long nap time to rest and get ready for the coming events. We then woke up and packed our things so tomorrow morning can happen easier, and then we headed to our final European concert. We can't believe our trip is ending! We'd had such a wonderful time traversing two countries and leaving our mark (our musical mark, that is). Our final concert was wonderful! Such a great experience for us! We had a great crowd who enjoyed it as well. After the concert, we headed back to the hotel for a quick dinner, then headed to bed. We'll be up in just a few short hours to begin our journey home. See you back in Birmingham tomorrow!!

Once again, pictures will come once we get back!

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Day 6 - On to Regensburg!

We left Pilsen and the Czech Republic today and headed to Regensburg, Germany. We had a long drive to Regensburg, but most of us got some nap time in :) Once we arrived in Regensburg (a beautiful city, by the way), we ate a wonderful lunch at an outdoor patio (schnitzel! Yum!), and then headed to the town center for a guided tour. We learned a lot about the city of Regensburg, and even got to sit under an Roman arch dating from 175 AD! We also learned about the Domspatzen Boys Choir, who's home is St. Peter's Cathedral in Regensburg. They were founded in the 900s! Read that again. The 900s. Like over a thousand years ago. WHOA. Once the tour was done, we had some time to souvenir shop and walk around with our chaperones. We then met up and went to the hotel for dinner. And now we're heading to bed. We have a big day tomorrow! We sing for mass in the morning and a concert in the evening!

P. S. We have to be up super early on Monday, so tomorrow's edition of Jeff and Phillip's WonderBlog will not be posted until Monday morning. Maybe. Or when we get home. We'll see. But never fear, it WILL be posted!!

Day 6 Pictures

The wifi at our current hotel is a bit difficult and slow. Our attempt at uploading photos failed and we won't have another long enough chance to try again until we travel :( Sorry everyone! We'll put them up either on or quickly after the trip, so keep checking!

Friday, June 5, 2015

Day 5 - Pilsen

Today we spent the day in our sister city of Pilsen. We started out the day singing in St. Bartolommeo Cathedral with two school choirs from Pilsen. We love singing with other choirs! We had some wonderful lunch (hamburger and fries! Woohoo!) and then took a guided tour of Pilsen. We saw some very interesting sights and learned a lot about the city. When our tour was finished, we rode the bus to Techmania (a very McWane Center-esque science museum) and got to spend some great time there. We boys love hands-on thingys! After we had our fill of technology (let's face it, we could've stayed there all day long, but they were closing and we had another concert to perform...), we ran back to the hotel to change into our concert black, then went back to the church to sing our concert. We had a full house, and we sounded great! After the concert, we headed back to the hotel, got some dessert (we ate sandwiches at the church before the concert), and headed to bed after another long and exciting day. Tomorrow, we head to Regensburg!!

St. Bartolommeo Cathedral and school choirs:

The boys enjoyed meeting the other choir members...

 Really enjoyed it...

 Really, really enjoyed it...

Isaiah (bottom) is my favorite part of this picture.
Look at those eyes. She definitely came back for the night concert.
Lunch. Oh. My. Goodness. Jeff and Phillip love burgers.

Will Dobbs. 

Not sure.
No words.

After lunch group picture. Apparently what Dr. Peters (the only female) is holding is important.
No one gave me that information. A review? A secret formula for making super humans?
Probably just a newsletter.

Play time #1: Hanging out before the walking tour.

Hackie-sack attack

Life Rule #7: When it's eat time, we eat; when it's play time, we play; when it's rest time, we rest; when it's work time, we work; and we don't confuse them! Gosh Trevor and Gabe! ;)
More ninjas

Walking Tour. We split into two groups and went around Pilsen. 

Phillip found the Orthodox Christian Church. He was very happy. (St. Anne's Orthodox Church)
4th largest synagogue outside of Israel
This is Jeff and Ben giggling like 8th graders.
Ask why later.
The Technomania! What a fun place to be!

The same face Gabe made at his mom, when
mom came near Gabe... who was near the other choirs' girls.

Having left Technomania. Sigh.

On to the fastest turnaround by a group of 35 5th - 12th grade boys ever - arrived at the hotel, cleaned and changed into concert attire, boarded bus, and left in 20-25 minutes.

A quick bite to eat before the concert.

The concert! We were sad to miss Michael Coby who needed to sit out of this concert and recover from something :( Morgan Whetstone performed Michael's solo in his stead and did very well.

The Monsignoir who graciously allowed us to perform
in this gorgeous cathedral.