Comprising the first five years worth of essays and blog posts from my German adventure, Heimat is a collection of stories, ideas, and meditations on all of the dust you kick up when you move countries, when plans and expectations go out the window. It is about relationships; with countries, with people, with ourselves. It is about the Germans, their beautiful country and being quite foreign within it. It is about having a Heimat and finding another on the other side of the world.
The German word ‘heimat’ doesn’t have a direct English translation. We use the word ‘home’ and imbue it with tone, or rely on context, or say it with hand over heart. It’s rather fitting, really – a lot of things about my German life don’t have direct English translations, like house shoes and the sport of recycling. The idea of there being a home you carry in your heart, the one you feel the closest to, understood by, is an idea I find myself profoundly drawn to. My daily life is a constant exploration of the idea of home, this sense of belonging to and connection with a place that we can feel whether we inhabit that place or not.
I left home, and my Heimat, when I was 25 – home being my home country, where I was born, where I spoke the language – with a thirst for something different. I had a six month Working Holiday Visa in my pocket, and two words of German, and no idea how long I would stay. Five years, three cities, a marriage and soon to be two babies later, I am still here.
I thought I would be writing about the life of a smug Australian in Europe; minibreaks in France, meeting pals in London, gadding about in gorgeous boots and hats as the weather cooled and my merlot turned to mulled wine. I thought I’d only be in Germany for a little while, and then I’d move on, ever the glamorous, if inexpensively dressed, nomad.
But Germany stuck. Its people, its way of life and all of those odd little quirks, stuck. What I actually wrote about was the long, often lonely process of adjusting to life in a new country; about being foreign; cross cultural and long distance relationships; linguistic misunderstandings and mishaps; about the idea of home and what goes into creating one, while you miss another so acutely. And I wrote extensively about the Germans, people who came to be my friends, my neighbours, my colleagues, my bosses, my students, my husband and my family. I wrote with, as the Germans say, one eye laughing and one eye crying, because the truth of the matter is, this business of leaving one home to create another is so very, very bittersweet.
Heimat contains over 60 essays, that move in chronological order and cover life over 5 years in four cities. Some will be familiar pieces to long-time blog readers, although many of the previously published posts have been reworked and extended, and some will be brand new. They are my favourite pieces, hand-picked. I hope you love them too.
HOW TO ORDER
Europe, UK, USA, Canada
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Paperback edition: 12€ + sending costs
Hardback edition: 20€ + sending costs
Australia & Asia
We need to talk. Unfortunately epubli doesn’t ship to Asia Pacific (yet!). But fear not. I can easily sort out as many copies as you want/need. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Heimat order’ as the title and we can go from there. No worries.
This option is perfect for gifts, or for stocking the shelves of your shop, or just if you want to own an enormous amount of copies (understandable).
- 10 % ab 25 Stück // 10% off the total price when you order upwards of 25 copies
- 15 % ab 50 Stück // I won’t keep translating, I think you get the idea …
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What I Know About Germans
If you don’t own a copy of this illustrated little guy, then snap one up today. The same bulk buy discounts apply.
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