Jetlag is currently kicking my butt in all sorts of weird directions so this post probably won’t win the award for “Wittiest Travel Blog 2011,” (please don’t stop reading, I promise to do better next time!) but I wanted to give you a little update on my travels and new life here in Germany.
The three international flights (Minnesota to Iceland, Iceland to Denmark, Denmark to Germany) I took to get here were, for the most part, uneventful, but there were a few things worth mentioning…
- Seeing the sun rise and the moon set at the same time
- Flying into Iceland and seeing what an incredible land it is. I am SO going to visit there
- Watching people gather around the windows to see Iron Maiden’s tour plane take off in Reykjavik
- The airline losing my luggage (but I got it back today so no real worries, though the bag they lost contained all of my pajamas so last night I slept in a pair of long underwear and a zip-up sweatshirt…Germany is already teaching me to improvise!)
- The short but memorable airplane ride from Copenhagen to Hamburg—think Captain Kangaroo in a windstorm
- Not sleeping or brushing my teeth for far too long
After leaving Minnesota at 7:20pm on Thursday (August 18th)I finally arrived in Hamburg at 3:05pm on Friday (August 19th), where I was picked up at the airport by the “au pair dad” and driven to Stade, a small town about 50km from Hamburg’s city center.
Even though I have only been in Germany for 24 hours I have already had several noteworthy experiences:
- Visiting a bakery where they sold at least two dozen different types of bread and nothing else (The Germans love bread like Jerry Springer loves a fistfight)
- Having dinner outside at a real German restaurant and ordering dinner off a menu that I didn’t really understand. Luckily, I ordered something really good… now if I could only remember what it was called
- Having my first conversation in German (don’t be too impressed, it mainly consisted of me telling the store clerk that I didn’t need any help and then apologizing for my poor German)
- Learning to communicate with a host dad whose first language is Dutch, a host mom whose first language is German and children who are being raised tri-lingual (Dutch, German, English). We do a lot of pointing and start many sentences with “How do you say…” (Admittedly, they’re all doing MUCH better than me!)
I also moved into my apartment, which is over the garage. When I walk inside the main building, if I go up a half flight of stairs there is a small landing and that is where my apartment is located. If I go up the rest of the staircase the family's apartment is there (they have an entire floor).
My apartment consists of a bathroom with a washing machine that I cannot figure out, a small kitchen (fully stocked!), an office area and a bedroom. It is very nice and I’m thrilled to have somewhere to call my own.
In future posts I promise to tell you all about my work, the town where I’m living and the life of an au pair.
For now I am going to continue my valiant fight against jetlag and homesickness-- sometimes they win, sometimes I do. But, as Helen Keller famously said, "Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." And no one said adventures were easy J
Miss you millions!
P.S. Thanks for all the comments-- love it!!!