Living in a foreign country has definitely been a whirlwind experience, but now that I’m – as of today – officially nine months into the whole thing, my life is finally beginning to settle down and feel relatively “normal.”
That’s not to say I’ve got it figured out, but I feel like I’ve finally “arrived.” I’m comfortable living here, my homesickness that set in between months five and seven is pretty much gone, and things are working out. In short, I don’t regret my decision to uproot my life and move 6,000 miles east. While I had initial doubts, or “buyer’s remorse,” when I first moved to Germany, now I can’t imagine my life being any other way – nor would I want to.
As happy as I am with the current state of things in my life, every once in awhile, there are little things that brighten up my day, such as letters from back home or care packages from friends.
It has been awhile – since I went away to college at the age of 18 – that I have really received care packages. I do have one friend, J. in Cologne, who I have regularly traded packages with over the years, but generally speaking, I don’t receive too much unexpected mail.
However, the past week has graced me with two different packages from two awesome people.
First, I received a little package addressed to me from Seville, Spain. It was from Cris, a member of Sundae! I interviewed him back in August when the band came out to Berlin for Indie Pop Days and since then, we’ve casually kept in touch via social network sites. Well, the band came out with some new music, so he was kind enough to think of me and send this little package, complete with music, buttons, and a sweet little handwritten note.
In all fairness, I knew that he was sending me something, but hadn’t thought about it since he asked for my new address, so it was still a surprise, and it certainly brightened my day.
Then yesterday, as I was sitting in bed working, the door buzzed. I went and answered and it was DHL. I opened the door, assuming it would be something for M., but was surprised when I saw my name staring back at me. And what do you know, it was a package from Anne!
Anne was my “boss” when I worked at the writing center in 2010-2011, but she has always been more of a friendly face than a stern authority figure in my life. She recently went on a trip to India, and picked up a few things for me, including a lovely scarf (I was just thinking a couple days ago about how I need to start accessorizing with more scarves!) and Berlin: City of Stones. Admittedly, I’ve never been much of a graphic novel reader, but apparently this particular two-book series (by Jason Lutes) has been named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 best English-language graphic novels ever. So, it must be worth the read, right? I’m excited to tackle it in the coming weeks.
So needless to say, I’m grateful to these two friends who cheered me up from afar. In the meantime, it has inspired me to be a little more active in my own snail mail correspondence.