A Travellerspoint blog

February 2010

Lots of Living and working and not enough PLAYING

I was reading an article on www.bootsnall.com the other day and I just can't stop thinking about it. I'll find it and link it here later...it was about 'travelers' vs 'expats'. I can say now that I have experienced both of these. As a traveler, I have enjoyed the US, Vietnam and Italy. Now I am experiencing living as an expat in Germany. These are two very different worlds....

I have decided (possibly prematurely) that I do not enjoy being an expat. I much prefer the life of a traveler. I really have no interest in continuing to live here in Germany. I have a decent job, a nice apartment (that I really don't want) and have made a few friends since I've arrived. I really liked the feeling of being able to move every 3 months if I wanted too. I'm probably a little jaded on my opinion right now but that's how I feel.

Being a traveler....I love the feeling of not knowing what the next week is going to hold, or where I will be staying in two nights from now. THe excitement of reaching a new city and finding my way around holds something for me. Where I'm going to get my dinner or what the 'free' breakfast includes and if it will be enough to hold me over until lunch. The push to explore, knowing that I've only a few short days and I'll be gone....it's like a drug, I want more.

Right now, I'm feeling stagnant. Like I am somewhere that I don't fit. It's ok not to 'fit' if I'm traveling but now I am living here and not to 'fit' is not a good feeling. After finally putting my finances together in the states so that I could afford to travel and enjoy my life...I am feeling the crunch of living on a restricted budget. Between making less money and having to set up an entire house and now having BILLS.....well, I am feeling strapped. I'm sure it's just a fleeting thing.....hopefully. Besides the fact of all of the above, yes: I'm in Europe. I should feel blessed but there are a few hurdles standing in my way in order to enjoy being in Europe. I'm trying to work these out and hopefully it will happen soon....

Only 285 days left until I can freely leave Germany and not owe the US Gov't anything.....maybe my opinions will change by then?

Going to go play with Aco now!

Oh...http://www.bootsnall.com/articles/10-02/expats-vs-backpackers-why-all-the-hate.html here is the link to the article. My bad, it was backpackers not 'travelers'.

Posted by Khandilee 12:47 Archived in Germany Tagged business_travel Comments (5)

A Man's (or woman's) Best Friend Arrives

It's been a little over 2 months since I left the states and left my little one behind. She has finally arrived. Mom and Dad had a hassle free flight to Frankfurt. On arrival it was like no one even cared that they had a dog with them....they literally could have walked out and no one would have been the wiser. It was Dad's first time flying and I think he secretly enjoyed it. Of course, I don't think that he will ever fully admit that due to the fight he gave me over getting out here!

Aco's homecoming was nothing extraordinary. I got her out of her crate and kissed on her a bit, then took her out to find a patch of grass to relieve herself. I won't go into details here.... I didn't even cry; believe it or not!

We stopped at McD's at the airport and had a bite of breakfast before driving on to my place 1.5 hours away. When we got to the apartment, we were all tired. Daddy was asleep before we set foot into the door. Ok, not really but it was very close to that!

I had to work that night so off to bed I went with hopes that Aco would join me.... My hopes were crushed when she trotted up the steps and found a comfortable spot next to Daddy. I think she likes him a bit.... She did finally find her way to my bed sometime during the day.

The next day, we tooled around town a little and stopped at the German grocery. We picked up some cheese and sausages for the road trip. I took Mom and Dad for a fine dining experience for a street-stand frankfurter! We spent the rest of the evening resting and preparing for our Road-Trip to Paris.

The drive to Paris was uneventful. The weather held out for the drive with no snow. Mom and Dad suffering from jet-lag and me from third shift work, we decided to relax on the first night in Paris. We went to a little restaurant just next to our hotel and had a wonderful dinner. The entire menu was in french and the waiter spoke little English. We ended up ordering the pre-fix meal and each ordered a different meat. Mom got 'poultry', Dad 'beef' and 'fish' for me. All of our meals were amazingly good. Plates were cleaned off and little room was left for our deserts of a chocolate lava cake and creme' brule'.....

I had booked a free tour of Paris the following day to start at 2:30pm. We left the hotel early and walked around Paris on our own exploring then began to head toward our meeting place for the tour.....we had planned to get a bite to eat once we got close to our meeting spot, but we ended up getting a little lost and by the time we arrived, it was time for the tour. The guide, Piere was wonderful. He directed us to a cafe' where we enjoyed coffee and sandwiches prior to heading off on the walking tour.

Piere was a wonderful guide and we got an inside look at his area of Paris. After, we wandered toward the Eifel Tower for a night-time view and a few pictures before heading back to rest our feet at the hotel. We were all quite tired from all the walking and I think I was nearly frozen to the bone.

Next, we were off to Brugge, Belgium. I fell in love with this city when Aaron and I visited in December and it didn't disappoint this time. Window shopping, chocolates and good food were had and even Aco enjoyed meandering around the city. Of course, they let her into the restaurants and she even got a chair to herself so she felt like a little princess.

I forgot to charge my GPS so we got a little turned around on the way home and the 4 hour drive ended up being about 6 hrs. In addition, something is going wrong with my car. It's missing and I can't figure out if it's a tank of bad gas, clogged filters or possibly the fuel pump going bad....it's gotten me to work now for two nights and hopefully one more then it's off to the mechanic.

Mom and Dad's visit was way too fleeting. I felt like they barely got here and were leaving again. There is so much that I wanted to show them and feel like they only got a small taste. Maybe they will make a return visit.....

I'll post pictures soon....

Posted by Khandilee 18:25 Archived in France Tagged family_travel Comments (3)

My German Home

I finally have some furniture and am starting to feel like it's my place. Thought I would share some before/after pics for everyone....

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And just for fun....here are some pics of the snow in my backyard about 2 days ago:

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Posted by Khandilee 01:11 Archived in Germany Tagged women Comments (5)

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