I have made it to Schwäbisch Hall, where I am attending language courses at the Goethe Institute. Schwäbisch Hall is very pretty, very old and in a deep, scenic valley. I will include pictures eventually, but not right away because it turns out there is no internet in my dorm, and the weather in Schwäbisch Hall is very bad, so the town isn't photographing at its best.
The Goethe Institute believes in total immersion, and so all of the social events and tours are done only in German which is not very entertaining or informative (the classes, as expected, are also in German). Between this, the lack of internet and the fact that my 'fun' book is by Dawkins (!?!), I feel conversationally deprived.
The other issue in my life is the compound problem of the bank account I still don't have, which is needed for health insurance, which is needed for a visa (aside from the obvious observation that emergency medical coverage in a foreign country is never a bad thing). The Goethe Institute administrator says it's normal for it to take several weeks to open an account - silly me, thinking things were more efficient here - and that I should just buy health insurance with them, which I don't really want to because I have signed on with another company and so will then be billed twice for September. I can't even call to see if things are moving along at the bank or if they lost my application, because banks are one of the places where no one speaks English. I can't believe I've only been here a week.