Wo will ich gehen?

So, the end of week two and I have just made myself a toasted sandwich in the frying pan – a trick I have not used since I lived in Italy about 15 years ago. Admittedly one piece of bread had to be thrown out as it was black and, as it turns out, German bread is not so easy to scrape as English bread. So there, I’ve learned something.

As it’s Friday it’s quite a free afternoon before the Social Event so I have been entertaining myself by boiling up my flannel. Having long since run out of wipes / lotion for the removal of makeup, I am reduced to good old soap and water which works fine but makes a terrible mess of one’s facecloth. So it has gone into the pan I usually use for boiling water for tea and been boiled up with some salt. I am not sure what inspired me to add the salt, perhaps it was only the fact that I have a lot of salt and will be moving in two weeks’ time, but I am now confident that the flannel is now sterile though unfortunately still stained with BB cream and mascara. Oh well, if nothing else the “kettle” got an outing and it might even improve the tea. I don’t like to be one of those people who complains that they cannot get a decent cup of tea the minute they set foot outside dear old Blighty, but Lipton tea is not the same. At the moment, as I am not in gainful employment, I am Being Sensible. Batteries for my travel radio are a luxury I can justify (language!) but 5 Euros for 25 tea bags I cannot, even if it is English Breakfast Tea. I am however compiling a list of things to stick into a suitcase on my next trip home: a big bag of Tetley and Daddies Brown Sauce. It isn’t a long list.

As I said, I have two weeks left at the Goethe and now there is a problem. Where on earth will I go at the end of these two weeks? I have had two interviews so far – via Skype – one for a teaching post in Cologne / Aachen (freelance, perhaps 15 hours a week) and one for a writing job in Munich (an annual contract, 40 hours per week). This is the Good Job – the sensible option. Did I move to Germany to be sensible? All my life I have worried about earning enough to pay my rent and have spent rather a lot of time sitting miserable in an office as a result. The thought of Freelance work is terrifying but, right at the centre of that what freedom!

Anyway, I have two more interviews – another Skype one on Monday and one for a university language centre on Thursday, both teaching jobs. As yet though, no actual jobs. So, I have to decide what I’m going to do with myself for the next month. If the Munich job comes off it will start in October so I have a month to fill. I could stay in Bonn but if the Cologne / Aachen / University jobs come off I’m an expensive 90 minutes away. There is the possibility of a room for one month in Bonn and it might be nice to hang around; I have a language exchange partner now and we got on very well at our first (and so far only) meeting and then there’s the Bonn Players – all potential friends and contacts. Then the slight concern that if the aforementioned teaching jobs do come up I will be spending all my earnings on getting to the place of work.

I suspect the answer might be Cologne. I am not mad on big cities but perhaps it would be more sensible and yet I don’t know anyone there. Well placed for potential jobs though and plenty of students for private teaching. Same with Aachen and… Bonn.

Aargh! The weighing up begins again. Of course this doesn’t have to be a problem but if you have a mind like mine, that doesn’t let go of things easily, you will understand what a strain this is getting to be.

Things I have discovered:
I want to stay in the Rhineland
I really do want to teach English – it’s not just a passport to living abroad.

Anyway, I think I’ll make myself another cup of Lipton tea and write a few stories. You never know, one might turn out to be a bestseller.

Bis Bald!



About afewwordsinpencil

An English writer of novels and theatrical pieces. My first novel, "And I Shall Be Healed" (Quickbeam Press) follows the experiences of a young army chaplain on the Western Front 1916-7. This and some theatre writings are available on the usual websites.
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