Its been almost 4 weeks now since I landed in Germany. I still have not quite arrived or “bin noch nicht angekommen” and feel a little bit lost in my own world at times. I truly love the work I am doing at my new company and the rewards go beyond being able to shut down my computer for the day and go home at a reasonable hour. I enjoy the change of focus in my career, sharing my years of experience and watching people develop from greenies into their first small successes. 🙂 Yes, its been less than 4 weeks!
The househunting here has been an exceptional challenge, and quite strange! Three times I got funny replies to my viewing request telling a long story such as;
“Hi my name is Paul, I am a doctor living in Norway and my grandmother died, so we are renting out her flat in Cologne. If you are interested in renting the fully furnished flat for 400 Euros, please transfer 2000 Euros to my account and I will send you the key via a third party…” The other lady was polish and pregnant and wanted to post the key from Poland… Yes, I said post!!!
I just really wanted a viewing?? The Criminal mind here obviously functions very differently this side of the world!
Luckily I managed to find a charming little place in a Cologne suburb, an area which had its first inhabitants 1000 BC, before the Romans had their first settlement in the area. The House (a 3 story building with flats on each floor) is over a hundred years old, with a charming wooden staircase, downtrodden by time. Adorning it a basement that can make any horror film maker proud! My happiest moment? When I realised its less than 15 minutes away from the nearest train station! I do miss my little car!
I will be moving in on the first of August, with 1 and half suitcases. The rest of my things still waits patiently in Cape Town for me to give the go-ahead to be shipped this side.
Relocating to another continent is a funny, rollercoaster ride. It’s happy and sad at the same time. Its getting used to different sleeping patterns because the sun goes down so much later here. Its suddenly missing the extra cheese on pizza when you just want to enjoy something you have been used to for most of your life. It means getting used to different brand names with no idea how they taste like.
It means missing your friends, and yes, some of your family too.