Tag Archives: expat life

The Week in Germany: Bilinguals, Supstition, and Asparagus

Photo Public Domain: http://publicdomainarchive.com

Photo Public Domain: http://publicdomainarchive.com

Talking about The Germans as an expat

“Despite being a fairly homogeneous country Germany is still very regional when it comes to much of it’s culture, language (darn you regional dialects!), attitudes and general friendliness.  Even within regions there is a high level of diversity.  When we lived in Malente I had some of my positive experiences with strangers going out of their way to offer help.  Still we also had to deal with neighbors who made it clear they weren’t happy to be sharing an building with an American.  And herein lies the problem with stereotypes, they are too narrow to accurately define the parameters of reality.” Read more on Nine and ninety nine.

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Expat Life: Dealing With Homesickness

by Alie of The Erlangen Expat and Starting Over in Stuttgart

Plany wing black and white http://www.gratisography.com/

Photo http://www.gratisography.com/

I don’t like to use the word homesick when I miss my family and friends, home homesick is more like it.

Home is here, where I live, love, eat and sleep, my husband, my friends and potentially my future. I’m not sick for home as I’m already there, I have more than enough to be happy here but sometimes there is a nagging ache that I can’t quite put my finger on. A physical pain in my heart and a heaviness that I carry through my day, until I can either shake it off, or wallow in its glorious miserableness. I’m sick for home home.

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Five Things You Shouldn’t Say to Your Expat Friends

by Alie of The Erlangen Expat and Starting Over in Stuttgart

Photo copyright dpa

Photo copyright dpa

Now I’ll be the first to admit it, like a lot of expats I am guilty of not being completely honest with my homeland family and friends. I emphasise the positive. Partly because I don’t want to worry them but partly because they just can’t/won’t understand. I also appreciate why they can’t/won’t understand, I was quite blissfully ignorant before we moved, which in hindsight wasn’t such a bad thing (but that’s another story).

I know I’m incredibly lucky to have this opportunity to live my life abroad, but, and here’s the big but, sometimes expat life is shite. There I’ve said it. Expats everywhere and I, both know it’s true.

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Biking in Germany versus Biking in the UK

by Alie of The Erlangen Expat and Starting Over in Stuttgart

Photo copyright dpa / picture alliance

Photo copyright dpa / picture alliance

I’m very lucky that Erlangen and the surrounding areas are so utterly bike friendly that even a beginner (Anfänger) can get around safely. Now I am indeed no expert when it comes to biking BUT a bike is my main form of transport here in Germany and may be yours too, it’s worth doing some research, particularly if like me you hadn’t ridden a bike since childhood (and weren’t much good then either).

Comparisons

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Moving to Germany: First Impressions

by Greg Webb

Photo: Public domain

Photo: Public domain

When you imagine going to (and living) in another country, there seems to never be a perfect way that you can capture its essence with your imagination. Considering Germany is a fully developed, 1st-world country, I was naturally under the impression that its infrastructure, population, and overall culture would not vary much from my own country, but seconds after stepping off the plane in Frankfurt Am Main, I realized this could not be further from the truth.

Despite all of the pictures I composed in my head, nothing could truly explain the differences between the United States and Germany. The surreal feeling that smacks you in the face upon arrival is one of the hardest wake up calls you will ever get in your life and although extremely tired and jetlagged, I simply could not get my emotions under control.

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Expat Life: Passport Control, Customs, and Entry into Germany for Americans

by Greg Webb

Photo: Death to Stock Photos

Photo: Death to Stock Photos

Being an American, I think most of us can agree to having experienced at least some sort of anxiety about what it’s going to be like entering another country due to the aggressive nature of our airport security (even towards its own citizens). If you’re anything like me, you will/have/are scouring the internet looking for answers to questions that you simply cannot find. Well, look no further! In the next five minutes, you will learn the ins and outs of the German passport control and customs through my first-hand experience with Frankfurt am Main’s International Airport.

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Moving to Germany: Making Friends

by Melissa Alvarado

Photo: Public domain. Photographer: Matt Hobbs

Photo: Public domain. Photographer: Matt Hobbs

At the end of last year I received great news: I got a full scholarship to study in Germany. My whole family was excited and, well, why not? Everything about this new experience was exciting for me and for them. I tried to play it cool, taking one step at a time, telling my friends, my family, and everybody in the most calm way possible, but the tears, the congratulations, the parties, and all the related things didn’t stop (and I didn’t complain).

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