Fall in Eberswalde

The past couple weeks have flown by. There is so much going on and nowhere near enough time to do everything, let alone stop and reflect on our time here.

Full time in school for me means a lot of exclaiming, “How do people actually do anything?!” Most shops and offices are open 9am-6pm. I have class from 9:30-5:30. If I was on the city campus, this would be no problem – quick errands could happen on my lunch break or right after class. But the forest campus is a different story – either William has to take care of it, or it has to wait until the weekend. And if it can’t be done on the weekend or by William? I have to miss class. But I do love the forest campus! A morning and evening walk through the woods is just what everyone needs.

Herbert continues to enjoy kindergarten, or so we think. He doesn’t tell us anything. But we hear nothing but great things from his teachers. His favorite German words include “Tschüss,” “Danke,” and “Nein.” He likes to go to Mommy’s school on the weekends – we go to one of the parent-child rooms so that he can play while William and I get computer work done. He has also charmed everyone in my class.

William spent a week doing a trial at a local jewelry store – and on Monday he got a job offer! Unfortunately, he can’t start working until he has a residence permit and everything is approved by the Powers That Be. And since on Tuesday they tried to tell him that I have no legal right to bring my family to Germany, it may be a long road until he can work.

Yep, you read that right. Once again we are in battle with the Ausländerbehörde. Basically they refuse to answer our questions and tell us blatant falsehoods in an effort to make us leave the country. But they didn’t see William coming – after extensively reading German immigration law, he’s going toe-to-toe with them to prove he knows the law better than they do. Everything in the law spells out that even though I am a student, I am allowed to bring my husband and child with. As my German teacher from 4 years ago said, “Deutschland trennt keine Familie.” Germany does not separate families.

So it goes. Between this and the amount of effort that goes into accumulating things for our apartment (and carrying them up to the 4th floor!), I’m never moving again. Remind me of this next time we decide to move.

We’ve also been dealing with bank drama. Which really wouldn’t be a big deal, other than our need to have a functioning bank account to sign up for electricity. Finally on Friday everything got smoothed out and we registered for 100% Ökostrom (renewable energy). And now we’re just praying that everything goes through before our electricity gets cut. But at least that would only be for a couple days if it does happen, since we did get everything straightened out.

Meanwhile, the weather has been beautiful and the fall colors are gorgeous. You can see the forest from our apartment, and it is lovely. This coming week is a holiday week (Reformation Day is a public holiday, and I’ve been enjoying joking about how I’m offended by this), so Herbert and William have a 4 day weekend (I only get Thursday off).

I’m really looking forward to being settled. We are starting to get into our rhythm, but there is still a lot hanging over us, from back home as well as here. Once everything is taken care of, and we’re able to just sit back and live our lives (to the extent that we are ever able to!), we’re going to have a really wonderful time here.


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