Several people knew I came to Germany with the intention to teach for the Berlitz centre in Rosenheim for one year. My real hope/plan was start my life anew in Rosenheim. For many months leading up to my departure from Canada, I often imagined myself establishing friendly relations with my to-be-colleagues at Berlitz in Rosenheim, working hard but finding great satisfaction in my job, making close friends and finding the man of my dreams.
Well…it didn’t quite turn out that way. When I arrived in Rosenheim, I found out a few things about the job offer that I really didn’t like. Nothing was as I thought it would be. In the two months that I lived in Prien, a small village east of Rosenheim, I joined a few meetup group events with the hope to make some new friends. Though, I always ended up feeling like a complete outsider, not welcomed. Needless to say, it was discouraging.
On a more positive note, I met Andrew and Daniela, two people who I befriended instantly. Like me, they were not from Rosenheim: Daniela is from Speyer, a city in western Germany, and Andrew is from New York. Few times while I was in Rosenheim, Daniela invited me over to dinner. I was so thankful for their friendship (I still am even though we are now living in different locations) as it kept me from feeling utterly lonely.
Despite my German uncle’s best efforts to help me and encourage me to find work elsewhere so that my resident and work permit would be approved, I eventually decided I didn’t want to live and work in Bavaria. Trying to settle and have a career in a land far away from home, learn the language, and secure a job that pays decently was, I discovered, extremely difficult, especially since I was on my own and had no friends in the area who could recommend me or help me in some way. I really like Germany, so I decided to turn this into an extended holiday.
Looking back, I must admit I am really grateful things didn’t work out in Rosenheim, because if they did, chances are, I would be miserable. As John Lennon once said; “Life happens when you’re busy making plans.” The best decision I made for myself was the day I decided to leave Bavaria and travel Germany for a few weeks.
Traveling Germany has made me realize a few things. I realize how important close friends and family are in this life. While I won’t return to my job as a cashier, the best part about my job at Pharmasave, was that I had a chance to talk to people every day. In doing so, I met so many wonderful people. That was truly a blessing in itself. Unfortunately, it was also a time in my life when I was feeling unfulfilled. The emptiness inside blinded me and I couldn’t recognize all that I had been blessed with. But now I do recognize it and I am truly thankful. I never want to take anything, especially people, for granted.
I had come here to Germany thinking that my life would be better in some way only to discover that there is no place like home. I had for so long believed that there are no good opportunities for anything on the Sunshine Coast, but now my perspective has shifted. I now believe the Sunshine Coast offers great opportunity for those who seek it and when I return home, that is what I will do.
There is no perfect place in this world but we all have the ability to choose our thoughts. When things never seem to go the way we want them to, how we react determines the outcome. The door to having a career as an ESL teacher in Germany closed, but it wasn’t that great of an opportunity to begin with. In fact, it’s a new beginning in my life, a chance for me to do something way better, something that will bring far more meaning to my life.
In the meanwhile, I have established a really good relationship with my relatives in Verden. I have also met some amazing friends. That’s reason enough for me to return for another visit. The possibilities are endless and my traveling days have not come to an end.