Leoneda Inge – Berlin to Brussels 2014

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Berlin to Brussels to Berlin!

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I guess my BLOG should be called – “Berlin to Brussels back to Berlin!” That’s where I am – in the same room at the Relexa Hotel Stuttgarter Hof. The rain continues to come down in mini buckets this Sunday morning. So, I am sure I will be spending the entire weekend in my room, with a beautiful view of the mural across from my balcony – a reflection of my balcony! Nice.

This is what I see outside my balcony window at Relexa Hotel in Berlin!

This is what I see outside my balcony window at Relexa Hotel in Berlin!

The train trip yesterday from Brussels was very long, but very comfortable. Amtrak has GOT to step it up! I will admit, our fellowship director, Rainer Hasters, made sure we traveled in First Class, where I am sure the seats were bigger, and the train attendant brought you whatever you wanted – hot soup, chocolate cake, beer, coffee, and small, cute packets of those HARIBO “gummie” candies, every hour!

Graham Ulkins took this "selfie" of the gang while on a day trip to Bruges!

Graham Ulkins took this “selfie” of the gang while on a day trip to Bruges!

Saturday was a day of good-byes for my fellow RIAS German/American Exchange Journalists. A few journalists had to get back to the states for work. One person in my group left Brussels for Paris, another went to meet her sister in Geneva. My buddy Graham, from Baton Rouge, traveled to a small West German town to see his host family! He lived with them 10 years ago, study abroad. Four of us are back at the Relexa Hotel in Berlin, a pit stop before other travels or working on news stories. Our adventure has been amazing! We spent enough time together, learning and laughing, we should get three college credits!

It was definitely a festive time to return to Berlin! The soccor crazies were everywhere, dressed in all kind of ways! Red, Black and Gold! The big screen TV was set up in my hotel lobby when I arrived, but I decided to take my World Cup snacks to my room. I didn’t want to be around when Ghana whooped that German ass! Yeah, I said it! I am shocked the US beat Ghana – but it was close! After my meal, I ended up watching re-runs of “The Tonight Show” w/Jimmy Fallon rather than watching the entire soccor match. I just wanted to see the end – 2 to 2! Wow! I hope my ass is on the plane when Germany and the US play!

The main reason I’m not writing at my kitchen table in North Carolina and instead clicking away in Berlin, is because I am supposed to be meeting a group of school teachers from North Carolina this week! They’re traveling to Germany with UNC’s Center for International Understanding. This summer, they are being exposed to a teaching model developed by advanced manufacturers like German-based Siemens. It’s about jobs.


Author: leonedainge2014

Leoneda Inge is the Changing Economy Reporter at North Carolina Public Radio – WUNC. She has spent the past decade tracking job loss, gain and innovation in major North Carolina industries including Food and Agriculture, Tobacco, Furniture, Textiles and Biotechnology. Leoneda is honored to be the recipient of a prestigious Alfred I. duPont Award from Columbia University. She and a team of journalists won for the series – North Carolina Voices: Understanding Poverty. Leoneda has won several other first place awards – including three Gracie Awards from the Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television, four Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and numerous Associated Press (AP) Awards. Leoneda is a graduate of Florida A&M University (B.S) and Columbia University (M.S) where she was a Knight-Bagehot Journalism Fellow in Business and Economics. Leoneda has also been a Journalism fellow at the University of Michigan, The Institute for Justice and Journalism and the Foreign Press Center (Japan). Leoneda enjoys covering stories that link North Carolina to the global economy. Her work has been recently heard on National Public Radio (NPR) and WBUR’s “Here & Now.” When Leoneda is not reporting, she loves training future Journalists. She has served as a mentor for NPR’s Next Generation Radio project, and taught at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee and Bennett College for Women in Greensboro, NC.

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