Strangely Normal

So I’ve been back in Germany for just over a week now.  When I left it was practically still winter, and now it’s “Hochsommer.”  (That translates to “hot!  and no airconditioning!”)  Despite the opposite seasons, the strangest part of returning has been how normal — how ordinary — everything now feels.  In February, everything was a new discovery (or new challenge): how do I select spices and keep the kitchen stocked the way I like?  How do I use a German tape-dispenser?  Where can I possibly find some reasonably hot crushed red pepper flakes?  (The answer to that last one turned out to be: import it yourself.)

Now, everyday actions just seem like the same sort of things I’ve always been doing.  I mean, yes, it still takes a few extra minutes to find the scotch — or whatever the German brand is — tape because the container doesn’t look how I expect it to, but the familiarity of that “oh, right, *THAT’s* the tape” moment somehow makes everything easier.  Taking the train into town for school has been the simplest thing ever.  Buying groceries is suddenly entirely uncomplicated.  I suspect that many people living in foreign countries go through a slow transition from “WTF” to “duh,” but because I left shortly after achieving the “duh” level of familiarity with my new home, my re-introduction was surpringly different from February.

I am, by the way, officially a resident of Germany now.  I can receive mail, and I can re-enter the country — as well as live in it — legally.

5 thoughts on “Strangely Normal”

  1. It feels like you are farther away than you were in Feb. Maybe that is because I got used to seeing you a lot around California, which was a special treat!

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