I’ve been quiet for the past month, and for good reason! We recently spent two weeks visiting the US, and then I spent the past week battling jet lag while translating, starting my B1 German course, and preparing to teach my fall quarter online translation course. I’ve been busy.
I have a lot of thoughts floating around about my trip, but the one that stands out the most right now is the return home to Germany. For all the time that I have spent traveling and even living abroad, this was my first time to go from the US back to my home abroad. Going home … abroad. I know this must seem incredibly normal to most expats, but it was a new feeling for me.
We flew in and out of the Brussels airport, and we got a great deal to park our car there for less than the price of one round-trip train ticket. So after our flight arrived, we just hopped in our car and drove 1.5 hours home. It was such an easy, pleasant, and normal-feeling drive. With Iowa still suffering from this summer’s drought and San Diego’s desert environment, it felt nice to return to a green countryside in Europe.
And even though the transition back has been hard—crazy-awful jet lag, a temperature change from around 90 to 55 F (32 to 13 C), an abrupt dive back into work, and a severe lack of family—it was still nice to return to our own apartment, a walkable city, and a day-to-day life that feels more or less normal now. It’s good to be home.