Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends and family. For only the second time in my life, I am spending Thanksgiving away from home. The first time was when I was visiting a friend in Venice and the reason this time has to do with a combination of seeing my family back in October, and my recent travel to and from Germany. I got back from Germany Monday, am here in Seattle for Turkey Day, and then I leave again for Germany on Monday for a good couple weeks.
Germany was, simply put, awesome. Knowing absolutely no German was a bit of challenge, but most Germans actually know enough English to help me along so it wasn’t really too much of a problem. I would go through phases of confidence, however. Like the second day I was there and I had looked up a few German phrases on about.com and headed out into the streets saying “Morgen!” to passerby and anybody else I had a chance to. Unfortunately, with such confidence comes the assumption from others that I was able to actually speak German. And when they would reply to me as such, I just kind of stared back at them with a big dumb American expression on my face. Oh well.
Seeing as how I didn’t know German, I eventually started ignoring most signage. This became a problem when I wanted to eat breakfast at the hotel I was staying at. I was actually staying in a co-workers apartment as he was out of the country, so I wasn’t familiar with the hotel. Little did I realize that even though the room I was staying in was located in one building, the actual hotel was down the street. This wouldn’t have been so bad were it not for the fact that the building I was staying in was also a hotel. But when I walked down to their front desk to drop off my laundry, the poor girl was quite confused. I eventually showed me room key and she grinned and said she would take care of it for me. Not really understanding what had just happened, I walked across the hallway and sat down for breakfast. The girl, again looking confused, came up to me and told me that I could have a much nicer breakfast if I went to the hotel I was actually staying at. oops
The weekend before I came home, I went to Dresden to take part in an Expat Blogger Meetup. This was really fun as I got to spend time in Dresden, a fantastic city, with several Americans that were already pretty familiar with Germany. One of the other Expats even grew up in Connecticut originally! Dresden, and all of Europe, is so full of history I feel I could wander around aimlessly for quite a long time. Driving on the autobahn was also fun - it’s nice to be amongst other drivers that are considerate and know the rules of the road.
I’m off to a turkey here in Seattle for now. Feel free to check out my Dresden trip on Flickr.