Tag Archives: expat life

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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Reading in German: A Blog Hop and a Read Along

Photo copyright dpa

Photo copyright dpa

So guys.  This week in Frankfurt books are taking over the city.  Book Fair Week.  It’s my absolute favorite.  To celebrate, this month’s blog hop is all about books and reading (or trying to) in German and in Germany.  There are several ways to join in, so gather ’round and listen up.

Firstly, you can write a post about reading in German.  So this could be a book review of a German book, or the tragic tale of your attempts to read something more complex than See Spot Run.  It could be a rant about finding English-language books in German book stores. (Or, you know, about how the covers are printed in the opposite direction of English books, thus RUINING YOUR ENTIRE BOOKSHELF. Ehem.)  It could even be a story about trying to make a recipe from a German cook book.  If a book or reading is involved, we’re game.

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The Week in Germany: Street Signs, Airports, Pumpkins, and Beer

Photo copyright dpa

Photo copyright dpa

The history of Berlin street names, illustrated.

I always wonder about the stories and the people behind the names on the street signs I see.  This project will help educate you about them in pretty illustrated form.

You, too, can visit the Munich Flughafen.

“One of the stops on bus 635 is the München Flughafen Besucherpark, or Munich Airport Visitor’s Park.  I could see from passing by that it had a bunch of old aircraft to look at, and an observation hill that looked over the airport, and I made a promise to myself to actually stop when I had time, instead of just noticing it on the way to or from the airport.”  Read more on Doin’ Time on the Donau.

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The Week in Germany: Voting, Blogging, and Learning German

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People who live, work, and pay taxes in Germany should be allowed to vote in Germany.

I know I would appreciate having the chance.  Monday on The Local

SPD Vice-President Ralf Stegner said on Sunday that “people who live, work, pay taxes, should also be allowed to vote. Why should we withhold this essential civil right from them?””  Read the entire article here.

Advice for bloggers in Europe. How to make the money happen.

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The Week in Germany: Gifts, Food, Movies

I heart Deutschland.  A street artist has modified traffic lights to show the love.  Photo copyright dpa

I heart Deutschland. A street artist has modified traffic lights to show the love. Photo copyright dpa

German Food: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly

“If you ask Germans about their cuisine, they will get that faraway look in their eyes which one gets from some a lot of thinking. Finally, if the people you ask are anything like my German friends, they’ll probably tell you that it’s very bland and tasteless. But they will point out that you can easily buy cuisine from all over the world in Germany which is the plus side.”  Read the entire blog on My Life in Germany.

While we’re talking about food…

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