Aren’t new places exciting? The white walls, the delicious, pervasive smell of new paint. All of that empty space that will soon fill up with the clutter you have accumulated over the years, boxes and boxes of stuff you felt smugly minimalist about ruthlessly streamlining pre-move only to find bags of clothes and bits and pieces need to bite the dust during the move-in as well.
So we made it to Kiel, as did the contents of our house, and now we’re sucking in that salty air and shivering in classic north German spring weather; grey, drizzly and chilly during the day, with the occasional dazzling afternoon of big blue skies. But Lord, it’s good to be back, good to crack the spine of this next part, get acquainted with our new neighbourhood and its cafes and restaurants and book shops. There are no hourly church bells here, no glimpse of forests when you look out the bedroom window. We’re back in the land of the bouncy northern accent, where ‘moin’ covers all greetings, ‘bitte’ is ‘bidder’ and ‘yo’ peppers conversations liberally. And breakfast features at least three different types of tiny crabs or shrimps in dill sauce.
I’ve been offline for the week, so apologies for the radio silence, although I have been popping up slyly elsewhere on the internet; here with a story in The Local – Germany’s News in English on the porn industry and right-wing politics, and here in an interview in the Kieler Nachrichten. Thanks to all of you who stay in touch with me over on Facebook, I love having that platform to talk with you all.
I shall be back next week with missives from the north, and some exciting news on an upcoming interview concerning What I Know About Germans.