Carry On Daniel

Trip Start Oct 18, 2012
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Germany  , Rhineland-Palatinate,
Sunday, January 20, 2013

Howdy folks,

It has been a nervous week of waiting for my Visa interview. I haven't had much motivation to do anything at the moment because I'm still not at school and self-motivation for study was never my strong point. There is only so much solo study you can do learning a language anyway. We had fun at the pool on Tuesday because it was below zero and snowing. There is a part where you can swim outside through a narrow opening which is cool, but not as warm as the Banff Hot Springs.

On Wednesday we sat down to dinner and drank a Coopers Sparkling Ale which Steffie had kindly ordered for me over the internet. It was a hit with the parents which is a tough crowd to win over because there are plenty of good German. I've been introducing them to a lot of new foods especially since we found an Asian food market. Steffie made Yakiudon which she learnt from the Japanese in Banff and I introduced them to prawn crackers and papadums. For me it is amazing that someone had never eaten a prawn cracker before, but then again I had never eaten Raclette before I got here.

On Friday Steffie and I got up at 7am and drove into Heidelberg for my 9am interview at the Landratsamt. The interview was with a woman named Frau Grill (the German's don't bother with first names in business) and the whole thing was over in less than 30 minutes. Just like I suspected the interview was more out of formality (just to make sure I am a real person) and I didn't even have any personal questions asked of me. With the offical stamp of approval, I formally was granted another year to live and work in Germany. Time for a coffee!

The biggest difference since getting that stamp is the fact that I can now start forward planning. My first step was to book back into the Volkshochschule for February where I caught up with a few of the guys. I even informally sat in the class for 2 hours which was weird, but fun. After heading out for lunch, I caught the tram back to Edingen and got a haircut so I could get some business photos taken for my resume. Apparently you have to submit a photo with any job application which I have never had to do before. That night Steffie and I went out to a Chinese restaurant to celebrate.

On Saturday it was time to get some new clothes. I had to ditch all my working clothes when I left Banff because I didn't want to travel with them and so I was in need of new ones. Steffie suggested that we hit up the new shopping centre Rhein Gallerie across the river from Mannheim in Ludwigshafen which is technically in Rheinland-Pfalz which is the 3rd German province I have been in. Germans don't really do shopping centres in the way America or even Australia does. I guess that is because there isn't much new space in big cities where you can build a shopping centre.

This shopping centre is less than 2 years old and it only took 20 minutes to drive there. We hit up C&A which is like Kmart to get some business attire and Steffie got some business clothes as well. It wasn't too expensive and Steffie got a complete outfit for around 140 Euros. We went around the whole place in around 4 hours which is longer than any man can handle especially when you are in search of a grey handbag. We ended up heading into Mannheim, but by then I was over it and just glad once we finally got home.

So there you have it! A new Visa and another year in a foreign country. Just need money now!
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