The Journey Begins

In 1988 I left college in Texas for a year study abroad in Vienna, Austria. Looking back on that I have to laugh a little at twenty year old me. The version of me in 1988 had four years of French in High School and two years of college French. I marched into the study abroad office and for some unfathomable reason I signed up to go to Vienna, Austria instead of the program in Nice, France. I do remember thinking I definitely want to go somewhere where they speak a foreign language but I’m tired of French.  I might as well have thrown a dart at the wall and picked a place. I quickly went and signed up for a German class at my Texas college. I remember the professor literally rolled his eyes at me when I said” I need to learn German quick, I am headed to Vienna next Fall”. I think back on all that and wonder about that Marie. She was foolishly, wonderfully, confidant.

Fast forward twenty some odd years and I am living in Texas. I have had a job that I have hated for 5 long years. Never even wanted to work there but I felt grateful for the opportunity in a bad economy. I hate where I have lived for the past 8 years but felt grateful to own such a lovely home. And along came an offer to move to Germany with my husband’s company. Wow, amazing right! Leave my hated job, and the community that I never feel comfortable in. Old Marie would have jumped at it. But this Marie  has been freaked out every step of the way. I think I must have driven my friends crazy with the endless discussions of “what if”. What if my German is not good enough? What if it’s too expensive? What if the rule oriented Germans are mean to me?I don’t follow rules well. Are we sure we will get the cat thru customs or will she languish in a German kitty jail?

Well I decided to jump off the bridge once again and move at least temporarily to Germany. Ok it is less of a jump and more of a slide down slowly holding on tightly to a rope kinda thing. Unlike my first experience going abroad this was a nightmare to prepare for. The first time I overpacked two large bags and got on a plane. This time I prepared for two months; preparing the Texas house to rent, getting my son ready for the move, getting the cat microchipped and throwing away beloved items that just seemed frivolous to move or store.

So let’s see how I will handle this adventure twenty years later  with kid and cat in tow!

Thanks for joining me!


Marie and Elizabeth Circa 1988
Me and my friend Elizabeth on our second day in Austria, circa 1988

3 thoughts on “The Journey Begins

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