Germany Update (No.1)

Wow! So much has happened since my last post! We are now in Germany, and finally getting settled in our new place.

Our flight left Calgary on Tuesday, August 5th, it was long, but uneventful. Kaya did awesome, and was super happy to see us when we picked her up from the bulk baggage area. I am pretty sure she is loving all the dogs that she meets on our multiple walks everyday. Honestly, Kaya has been such a champ through all the changes. So proud of our pup. :)

We landed Wednesday afternoon (it was like 4am Calgary time) in Frankfurt and made our way to a hotel. Since Paul didn't sleep at all on the plane, and I had slept for maybe an hour, we were both wiped by the time we loaded up our luggage and sorted out the rental van. We basically dropped our bags, collapsed on the bed and slept for a few hours, woke up, ate some pizza from the hotel restaurant, and slept again until about 5am local time on Thursday morning. After eating some breakfast, we headed out. I drove the 3.5 hours from Frankfurt to Kleve, and let me tell you, Germans drive FAST! I was going 140 kms just to keep up with the "slow" traffic, and cars were whooshing past me at probably 180-200 kms per hour. Kinda scary, but awesome at the same time. :)

When we got to Kleve, we had to register and fill out an 'Anmeldung' form to the 'B├╝rgeramt'. Basically, its like registering your car, but here they do it with their homes. Whenever you move, you have to go to the B├╝rgeramt and tell them your address and they print off a certificate that you need for insurance, etc. A little bit of a different process than in Canada. :) After that we headed to our apartment to meet up with the agent that we rented the apartment from, to see the house and get the keys.

The apartment wasn't exactly as we would have hoped. It was supposed to be two bedrooms, but it turned out to only be 1 bedroom. The previous tenant hadn't finished moving out their stinky furniture (they had smoked in the apartment), but they did take the fridge, washing machine, stove top and all, but one of the light fixtures with them. It doesn't seem as bad typing it out,now after the fact, but in the moment, I was ready to burst into tears. But we were on a tight timeline, no time for tears or freak-outs. After the quick walk through, we unloaded our bags and Kaya, and went to find some furniture.

 Paul had found some people on the local ebay website that were selling their old furniture, and had set up some appointments. So, off we went to go look and pick up what we could. One of the places we went to turned out to be a total score. The family was getting ready to move to London next month, and they were getting rid of a bunch of household stuff, and a bed! A really nice bed at that! We loaded up the mattresses so we would have something to sleep on, and told them we would be back the next day to pick up the rest of the stuff we wanted. We then went on a hunt to find cell phones so at least we would have some sort of internet connection to talk to family back in Canada.

Friday morning, we headed to a bank to open up an account, then drove to the nearest IKEA to Kleve, which is actually in the Netherlands. We picked up a bunch of stuff there, like bedding, pots and pans, and all sorts of odds and ends that you realize you need to furnish and make a place livable. :) We then headed back over to the peoples house that we had picked up the mattresses from, and loaded up the bed frame, a love-seat, chair, fridge, area rug, cabinet, microwave and an assortment of odds and ends. Our rental was a small VW minivan, but we were able to move everything over (it took multiple trips, and we were moving stuff in until midnight) without having to rent a bigger vehicle. :)

Saturday morning, we had to drive back to IKEA to return some items that didn't work, and then picked up a dresser for our bedroom. We also ended up buying a stove from the people we bought everything else from, since we needed an electrician to set up a stove top for us and none of the electricians we called spoke English, and basically hung up on us. Haha! The rental had to be returned by 1:30pm so we did a big grocery shop, and then dropped it off, and walked home to set up all the stuff we had bought. :)

The next couple days were spent exploring our neighborhood a bit, walking to the university for multiple appointments, messaging family back home, and catching up on sleep! I was so very homesick the first week and a bit. I just wanted to fly back home and hug my mom so bad! Seriously, it was bad. During the day, I would be fine, but as soon as I would climb into bed, I would just start sobbing. My poor husband. Speaking of Paul, he has been so patient and loving with me. I know he misses family a lot too, but he has just been so gentle and kind, and understanding with me. I love him! I still feel pangs of homesickness, but the gut-wrenching, heart-ripping pain has definitely eased up a bit. Our home internet has finally been set up, so now we can Skype which will help a lot with the homesickness too. :)

I will post pictures of our little apartment soon.

xoxo

Comments

  1. sounds like quite the experience! i almost burst into tears when you said the apartment wasn't what you were hoping ... i'm glad that there are have been some positives from the house/furniture experience though.

    settling will take a while, and i can't imagine the heart pangs you must be having (from nothing familiar), but soon i know you will start to iron out your new normal. i just know it :)

    i'll email you more and yes, skype soon?

    xo

    sarah nadine

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  2. Oh Sarah! How I miss you!

    It has been quite an experience. :) Even though there have been some frustrating moments, I am trying to embrace everything as fully as possible, and also learning to adjust my expectations a bit ;)

    Yes, let's skype very soon! <3

    Love you friend! xoxo

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