Posted by: tabliope | September 30, 2009

Fanny on tour and making the Germans cry

So Johnny resigned and had to leave early and we're on holiday.   Somewhere along the line both Johnny and I had the work wand waved over us and we can both feel guilty and slightly unhappy if we're not doing things.  .{I wrote a load of twaddle here about work but, trust me, we're all better off with me having deleted it}

Twenty-sixers may remember Stratprof; he wrote to me when I was leaving Switzerland for Germany and he said that it may take a little while to make friends in Germany but once I made friends then they'd be real friends for life.  They take friendship seriously here and they have the word for friend (freund) and the word for acquantaince (bekannt) and they're not in any way embarrassed about splitting the people they know into those groups and referring to someone as a bekannt if they've not hit the giddy heights of freund.   Of course we have the same thing in the English language but I think we're more likely to call someone a friend when all we've done is sat next to them on the bus a couple of times.  Anyway, I'm digressing wildly because I've forgotten how to blog.  J and I were practically hysterical by the time our guests arrived a few weeks ago because he'd done the whole resignation thing, been thrown out and we were trying to tell as many people ourselves and not have them find out through gossip.  When we told the Germans that we were leaving they were horrified – they were pleased for us but they were sad that we won't be here anymore.  One of our friends cried – I think that this was overkill but she did seem to be very upset by our announcement. 

Because of our friends' reaction to our news I was slightly calmer in telling my colleagues at the Tafel that I was leaving and sat down and made a bigger production of it.  They're upset too, probably because they've finally got me to learn how to say Bedürtftigkeitsprufung without stuttering.  So far we're looking at having three leaving parties – one for Johnny's team, one that the Tafel are doing for me and one for our friends in the neighbourhood.  When we left Switzerland our leaving party consisted of us having dinner with two friends. 

After making our announcements we threw a few things in the car and set off for the east of Germany.  I felt it was important that when Monday morning came around J wasn't sitting at home thinking about what was going on at work and instead we were walking around Zwinger in Dresden and the following day we drove down to a crazy little village on the border of Germany and the Czech Republic.  It's one of those border places that is the german equivalent of the 'booze cruise' that Brits used to do to France.  Everything is about thirty percent of the cost in Germany and so we decided to stay overnight and eat goulash for pennies.  After this we drove through Thuringia in central Germany and stayed in a couple of places that aren't going to hit the guide books but we had fun.   After a week of driving around we came home for the street party and then left for Devon to celebrate my birthday.  We came back from that and took the train to Switzerland to see the friends who had given us our leaving party three years ago. 

Tomorrow we're driving back to Devon through Holland, Belgium and France.  So far, the plan is coffee in Holland, lunch in Belgium and a trip to buy cheese and wine in France and then through the tunnel.  When we return in October we'll wash the clothes and then fly to Athens to find an apartment.  That's a whole other story.

At the moment life is really good – everyone should have 3 months paid holiday once in their lives to do things in.  It's a gap time for the middle-aged and I think that we're doing it quite well but I know that I'm very, very lucky.  


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Responses

  1. I believe the traditional British response to this sort of information is :”Jammy Bastards” :)Take care & have fun.

  2. [this is good] Have a wonderful trip x

  3. That all sounds bloody wonderful.  Enjoy. x

  4. Oooh!  Wonderful.

  5. It’s like you’re doing your European tour only – gasp! – without a female chaperone. Have a brilliant time.

  6. There’d better be currywurst in Athens.I’d love three months off. I foolishly started this job the DAY after I finished the previous one. In fact, I finished the previous one at 9pm and started here at 9am. That was fecking stupid of me.


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