If you are new around here (and didn’t read the sidebar information carefully), you might have missed the fact that I am originally from Germany, but have lived in California for a long time now.
15 years (give or take a few months during visa renewals and such) to be exact.
Well, 15 years ago today I landed in California for the first time to spend 6 months as an exchange student at an American university and I had no idea that this decision would end up being the biggest life changing decision of my life. Because what was supposed to be a 6 month stint turned into years…and I’M STILL HERE.
I’ve written about my story how I ended up in the US before (you can read about it here) and I still have days where it’s utterly mind-boggling to me that I made that leap and that I am living my life abroad.
I was a very shy and timid kid and nobody – least of all me – would have thought that I would ever take off on an adventure like that. Nobody would have bat an eye, if my (fraternal) twin sister, who used to be – and still is – so much more extroverted and outgoing than me, had done that, but guess where she lives now? In our hometown, 15 minutes from my parents’ house. Go figure.
This is no judgmental statement or anything. I am just stating the facts and marvel at the surprise factor of life’s unexpected twists and turns. If I have learned one thing in my life, it’s that you can’t predict, foresee, or plan anything with certainty, period.
When I met J, he actually planned to move to Germany with me after college. He was taking German classes when I met him (independent from me) and I was thrilled that he was willing to move overseas with me (not everybody would be up for that!), but life had other plans for us and we ended up staying in the US. (It’s a long story.) I am not going to lie though, moving back to Germany has always been a possibility in the back of our minds (especially with Trump as a potential candidate for the presidency – haha. No seriously!), but for now, we’re not going anywhere.
The truth is: As much as I miss my family and friends back home (I won’t lie about that and there are days when it’s extra-extra-tough), I love living here. I love being able to spend a weekend in San Francisco or Lake Tahoe, because they’re both just a 2-hour drive away. I love the hot summers and moderate winters. I love my job. I love our house. I love our Californian life. All these years of living here do that to you.
Wait. When did I get this old?