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Why and how I ended up here in Germany
I woke up one morning and decided I had to get out here after 19 years of working at the same job and living in my comfort zone. See what the World had to offer from a living/relocation perspective, not just being a tourist. As some family and friends had done so, and sung praise of their moves to a new land.

My partners and everybody who knew me, thought I was joking at first, as I was one of those who said NEVER . I only left with a backpack and my vellies to have a look around at first. Headed down under first, loved NZ to bits, and think Oz must be the best and easiest relocation choice for Saffers (especially if you have children) .

I headed back to CT for a few weeks, and headed to London were I had a six month job. UK was the next choice because of my Irish/EU passport, and the earning big money in pounds (what a disillusion that was).

I still did not know what I wanted to do or where I was heading, with my fully furnished home and car still waiting for my return to CT. Oz and the two year application was still in my mind. After London I went to the Edinburgh Festival, and stayed there for a fantastic year.

Got a call while there offering me a job in Germany, and told my mate he must be on drugs, as I donÂ’t speak a word of the language and not going to run around in short leather pants ( I would rather wear a Safari Suit and relocate to Bloemfontein ).

After a brief visit I agreed to help them out here for max of 6 months, and would then move on (probably still pursue my Oz destination). Well after 3 months here I knew I wanted to stay, now two years later, and made the decision to leave properly. Not trying to keep a foot on each side of the equator.

I have a German surname, with my Grand and Great Grandfather both being of German origin. Whether that has an influence of my enjoying it here I will never know. Yes Germany is very organized and for some too many rules. For me that works. Although in other ways they are much more open and leave things to choice. Like smoking in restaurants, dogs are almost allowed anywhere, bars close when they feel like it (although there is a late night law of something like 2am in some places, but seldom enforced).

As I have said many times before, I would highly recommend Western Europe as a place to live. The Germans great and closest the real South African living and thinking I have found north of the equator. Their “braaiing” at any chance, home cooked food, pride, festivals and great partying.

When they work they WORK, and when they play they PLAY!!!

No matter where we choose to live, we will always be African and foreigners in our new country. That does NOT mean you will never be accepted, if you accept and embrace your new country and culture. There will always be those in every country that do not like foreigners or accept you, and there are others who will do everything they can to help and make your transition as comfortable as possible.

Life is all what you make of it, no matter where fate has taken you, and home is where you put food on the table and rest your head. No one can remove the red African dust from our blood, and remember as I have said before, “Our hearts WILL die in Africa” no matter where our bodies lay to rest.

And after this road of fate and chance, one of the biggest things I have learnt is, “NEVER say NEVER”.

For 5 years ago I said never leave SA, then I said never live in Germany. In hind sight I should have done it at least five years earlier.

Will I return?

Who knows?

just “NEVER say NEVER”.

Hugs Hagar
Lovely piece Hagar..i always wondered why you were in i know why! :cloud9: :cloud9: :cloud9:
Very wise words.
Thanks Hagar. Wonder if we every learn the "never say never" lesson.

Also good to see you around Smile


Great article - can really relate to all you have said.
[Image: bookswap_sig.gif]

The more that you read,
the more things you will know.
The more that you learn, the more places you'll go. Dr. Seuss

"Be who you are and say what you feel,
because those who mind don't matter
and those who matter don't mind."
-Dr Seuss-
now I know that it wasn't on account of Gretchen Smile
Excellent piece Boet, I can certainly relate to many of the comments, especially the one about the German people braaing at the drop of a hat and the love of the outdoors, the work and party hard ethic too.

And I fully agree about the similarities to the SA life, I really like Germany and the People, our 2 girls can now speak German without an accent, come to think of it they have both picked up a slight Schwabian dialect Wink , and my German is good enough to make technical Sales presentations after 4 Yrs here to 80- 100 people at a time.

Your guidance in the beginning when we moved has proven to be excellent!!!

Tx Boet, Best Regards Swin Family
[color0blue]Dit was lekker by die see... Die Bodensee ( Lake Constance )[/color]
Thanks for sharing this with us Hagar!

It is good to read your postings again too!

Now that we know that Helga is not holding you at ransom.... :luck: and you live there out of your own choice.....

Thank you for sharing this with us all Hagar - it is very much appreciated. I hope others take heed of your remarks regarding "never say never" - too many people today take up jobs that they do not like and just plod on - you have shown that with initiative one can achieve various goals in life. Well done and all the very best for the future. :worthy:
Always enjoy life - and remember there is always someone worse off than yourself - treat others as you yourself would want to be treated.
Good article cuzz, wondered how you ended up in Germany. I wanted to know something - how do the Germans see the war - I dont mean weather it was right or wrong but how do they react to it now - are they embarrased and no-one must talk about it or do they speak about it matter of factly, do you think they get peed off always being shown as the bad guys and how do they "celebrate" VE-day.

By the way we are still loving it here in Oz and still think its the best move we ever did. Highly recommended !!

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