Why I’m Not Moving Back to the USA

My thesis defense will take place exactly one week from today. As soon as that day is over, there is no longer anything requiring me to stay in this country. Still, I am not moving back to the U.S. and I don’t have plans to do in the future. As anyone that knows me (or reads this blog) would guess, I have long-term plans to stay in Germany. Although I miss my family and friends every day, I truly believe that my quality of life is much higher in Germany than it is in the U.S. Why? Well, let me Continue Reading

3 Americans That are Only Famous in Germany

When it comes to fame, Germany has its own set of rules. The Germans have shot lots of foreign-born singers and bands into international stardom throughout the decades – the most famous example being The Beatles. Even today, there are Americans that can’t walk the streets of Germany without being recognized, yet hardly anyone in the U.S. has ever heard of them. Here are three of such Americans that are more famous, if not only famous, in Germany: Bruce Darnell source It’s hard to turn on German TV nowadays without seeing this American man’s face. Bruce Darnell is currently famous Continue Reading

Meeting Mrs. Nobody

It all began yesterday, when Mrs. Nobody lost the key to her apartment. Mrs. Nobody is my next-door-neighbor, and I am calling her Mrs. Nobody because her real last name is just one letter away from the German word for “nobody” (niemand). Mrs. Nobody is also a fitting name for my neighbor because of her age and gender. Although I had heard about the “invisibility” of elderly women before, I had never thought much about it. This was probably because I myself was guity of making these women feel so invisible. Anyways, here is everything I knew about Mrs. Nobody Continue Reading

How Germany Views the U.S. Elections

The time has finally come. The U.S. presidential elections are tomorrow, and we will soon know who the future President of the United States will be. And if you are an American, you better go vote (I already did)!Over the past few months, it has been just about impossible to turn on the TV here in Germany without seeing coverage of the U.S. presidential election. I can only imagine what it’s like to actually be in the U.S. right now… *shudders* But if you know anything about Germany, then it should already be pretty obvious that Clinton is favored among Continue Reading

The State of Germerica #2

Back in June, there was so much going on that I decided to write a post about the State of Germerica – that is, the general state of what’s going on in my life. Well, a lot has gone on since then, and I am not sure how to organize that all into a sensible blog post, so here we go again. Today’s post will proceed by topic. First up on the docket is… Apartment HuntingI want to move! As of November 1st, Marco and I have been living in our current apartment for exactly 3 years. That’s a long Continue Reading

Top 5 Translation Tools (German<>English)

Being enrolled in a German master’s program, I do my fair share of reading and writing [in both English and German]. I also do a lot of translation work for my student job at the university. So, I would consider myself quite knowledgeable when it comes to online translation tools and websites. If you have taken a German class, then your teacher probably told you to never use a translation website. Instead, you should use a German dictionary. Sure, that is a good tip for gaining a deeper understanding of the German language, but translation dictionaries are quick, easy, and Continue Reading

Getting Married in Germany: Wedding Planning, Pt. 2

At the end of August, I wrote about the plans for our wedding in Germany, which will be held this year on December 30! There, I wrote that we had set a date and location, I had my dress, and we sent out invitations. Here is what we’ve gotten done since then: PhotographerOur wedding is small and simple, but finding a great photographer whose style we really liked was important for us. We sent emails to about 15 photographers in our city. We were pleasantly surprised when our two favorites quoted us reasonable prices for a three-hour photography package (digital copies Continue Reading

A Month of German Bureaucracy

I had four appointments at the Bürgeramt in the month of September. Yes, you read that correctly: four appointments in four weeks. Here’s a review of each of those appointments, just to give you an idea of how amazingly thorough (and sometimes redundant) German bureaucracy is for us foreigners. Appointment #1: Ausländerbehörde My student visa was going to run out on September 30th. However, due to other bureaucratic circumstances, I had to enroll for another semester at my university. So, I needed to renew my student visa for at least 6 more months. When I made this appointment per email, Continue Reading

Registering to Vote from Abroad & Requesting an Absentee Ballot

If you are an American living outside of the U.S., you need to request your ballot for the federal election by October 8, 2016 (in most states), even if you are already registered to vote.  Do it. Now. If you don’t know how to register to vote or request a ballot from abroad, then read on. Earlier this year, when the U.S. presidential campaign was just starting to heat up, I started to feel quite guilty about the fact that I have never voted. Having moved so often since the age of 18, it just always seemed so complicated and Continue Reading

How We Met (His Side)

My German fiancé and I met five years ago in September of 2011 during my study abroad trip to Germany. Last week, I told my side of the story. As promised, this week is Marco’s turn. Without further ado, here is Marco’s side of the story, written by the man himself: The night I met Courtney started when I went to watch soccer at a sports bar with a few of my coworkers. VfB Stuttgart was playing SC Freiburg. I just looked it up online, and it looks like Stuttgart won (although I don’t actually remember the game). After the Continue Reading