July 2014


Happy Fourth, Happy Tenth, and Happy Fourth: A week, in review.

I’ve had a busy week – work has, unexpectedly, flared up. Two weeks ago, I was relaxed at the office, right now I doubt that I can meet all the deadlines facing me, without doing some serious work at home this coming weekend.

Such are the vulgarities of my job – which I love.

What I forgot to celebrate last Tuesday was the fourth anniversary of my current employment – I was so busy that it totally escaped my mind that it was four years ago that I moved to Berlin, meaning that I’ve been in my job for four years and my apartment for 3 years and 11 months.

The other thing that last Tuesday marked was my tenth anniversary in Germany – although, to be honest, my arrival date in Germany is a bit more murky, so I hesitate to state any single date definitively, other than to say that this summer marks the tenth anniversary of my move overseas.

Bird Face

Cool art at Mehringplatz, above the U-Hallesches Tor station.

Looking back on it, I am in a bit of shock.

Moving to Germany was a complete accident and I am one of those accidental expatriates.

By the way, I’ve avoided the whole debate about “foreigners” versus “immigrants” versus “expatriates” that has been going on, but I am hands down an expatriate and not an immigrant. I have zero interest in becoming a German citizen even though I am content to live here for the foreseeable future.

Birds at Mehringplatz

More cool art at Mehringplatz, above the U-Hallesches Tor station. There seems to be a things-with-wings theme in the area.

One of the highlights of my week was dinner Thursday evening with one of my favorite expats – well, German living in the USA expat type. He has the reverse culture shock, although he seems to be doing fine in most aspects of his life, but he’s unwilling to give up the possibility of moving back to Germany someday, even if it means not getting married any time soon.

The other thing that I missed – sort of – was the Fourth of July. But not really: I did wear red, white, and blue – and I did wish my colleagues (some of whom needed a bit of clarification) a Happy Fourth of July. My celebrations were tempered by the fact that I was completely and totally uninterested in watching football – Germany was playing France in the World Cup and so while I could have cheered for the red, white, and blue, I found myself at a nearby park reading a book instead, which was quite nice.

All-in-all, a nice week, with two Fourths and a Tenth. I guess that makes 0.6.

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