Friday, June 12, 2009

State of Our World

Been blogging about trips and stuff, but there has been some other things going on too. It has been great having Jennas parents out here to help with Mayzie and for travelling around with, they are pretty easy going. Jack did a whole bunch of work in the front and back yards...the landlady loved that haha, so did we. We are driving them back up to Frankfurt in the morning, so they will be gone and we will get back to our routine.

Work is still up in the air. They announced 10% pay cuts for those without a working contract (me included) and those came through so we are even shorter on money than before, when we were short on money. So that sucks. The company is trying its best to hang onto everybody. Something like 20 out of 28 employees have had their contracts terminated, but High End is trying its best to hold onto everyone. The work has been sparse but I had been going into the office nearly everyday, working from like 9-2. Easy, BS work. They sent me up to Hamburg for this whole week for some training, specifically to get certified to work for Airbus. It seems that Airbus is still hiring, so Hamburg is still a possibility. There is no job for me yet, but High End wants to train me up for the possibility of working for them, either up in Hamburg, or Switzerland and Munich have been thrown around. So we shall see. My boss assures me that he will not make me move anywhere until I have a longterm contract in hand. He knows that a 3-4 month stint somewhere is not possible for the family and all that. Would suck to make Jenna and Mayzie go through that. So thats where we are at. Next week I have my certification test in Hamburg, plus some more training, so Jenna will be on her own for that time. She is uneasy about all of this, everything feels temporary, but I think she is on board for a move, as long as we wont have to do it again for awhile. I am eager for us to feel more settled and for me to have a real job so that we can calm down and get on with our lives for the short time we are here.

Jenna is in her Deutsch course now, so that is 3 mornings a week. Mayzie's kindergarten has been sporadic as of late because of holidays and a teachers strike, so she has missed a few. Next week the teachers are striking for 3 days, that makes a total of at leats 10 days, I would say. Crzay Europeans. haha. Its ok for us (Jenna only misses her language course), but I cant imagine working families trying to juggle that...kinda sucks. Mayzie is coming up with some crazy German skills and we don't know what she is saying, or singing. Its pretty cool. She has a couple of friends at the school that she always talks about and the teacher is talking to her alot, so she says some funny stuff to us that she hears. She says "Guten Appetit" at every mealtime. Classic.

The car has been great. We have driven her all over the place, Switzerland, Belgium, and alot of Germany, and we have not had one problem. I need to get the oil changed and this is not something that the common German does, it seems. There are no Jiffy Lubes and no Schucks where you can buy the filters and oil all in one place. Alot of places sell the oil, but I have yet to find the filter. I guess most people take them to the dealership for a pro job, but its like 60 euro for an oil change? Rip off. So I have to figure that out soon. My mom and Bill come out on June 25 so I know we will be driving some more, so I hope I can do it before they arrive...just park her up on the curb, drain the oil into the gutter and fill her back up with some new stuff haha (joking about the gutter part, I think that would get you firing squadded).

We are both gaining confidence in the language and that is helping our time here. I know Jenna feels isolated and frustrated with our situation. I hope a job comes through soon. There alot of days we are ready to pack it in and go somewhere else, but we dont know where or how, so we are going to see this out, wherever it goes. I dont think there could have been a worse time to move over here, but we are still doing fine and trying to make the best of it.

Germany has alot to offer, but being a tourist and living here are so completely different that we are not out of the adjustment phase yet, I think. There are so many restrictions and being in this social bubble is a little hard to take for a "free spirited" west coast American like I think I am. It is America we have more freedoms, less rules, but it seems like it is very easy to fall off the cliff and fail, or the sky is the limit. Here in Germany, there is a social bubble and government network that will take care of you if you lose your job, you get injured or sick, but there is a lack of freedoms to do what you want and when you want it. No system is perfect, but I always had it in my mind how great it was in Europe, not realizing what that really meant. I think a mixture of both would be great, but there is nowhere like that in the world, even the Netherlands has it's problems.

I will leave you with this video of Mayzie singing Bicycle Race by Queen....


Steve said...

Haha, awesome. Mayzie, you keep up the loving of bikes and the world will be a better place for it.
Dude, sorry to hear about the still uncertain times over there, but happy to hear that the fam is starting to get adjusted a bit. Hopefully you guys don't have to move and if you do it will be a long stint instead of just a short while. It's cool that there's potential out there to work with Airbus though, good experience if you can get it and makes you that much more marketable when you get back to the states.
Thanks for keeping us up to date dog.

Mheim said...


You should check out "Bike" by Pink Floyd.

I've got a bike, you can ride it if you like.
It's got a basket, a bell that rings
And things to make it look good.


by the way. Bikes are the best.

just saying....