Californized… Germanized… I don’t know what I am anymore. Probably a mixture of both I would guess. But I really need to say, being back… is strange. I should be a ‘good exchange student’ and say it’s different, because nothing is better or worse, it’s all just different. But I don’t know if I can bring myself to saying that. I feel like I traveled back in time after learning valuable life lessons and how to take care of myself.
My three extremely long flights weren’t too bad, and I even made a new friend along the way (typical Angie, right?)… though I did manage to leave my blazer on the second flight… normally I wouldn’t really care, but this blazer has pins, tickets and other memories of trinkets from hundreds of exchange students and memories. It’s disappointing how the only thing I left/lost/forgot is probably the most valuable.
German has magically integrated itself in my English (as have German customs into my actions)… which would be fine if 1) people here actually spoke German or 2) it actually made sense… but sadly neither of the two conditions fit my current situation. I often going around saying “no thing” instead of “no problem” as well as “think you?” instead of sarcastically saying “you think?”. Not to mention several other… inappropriate things that tend to slip out of my mouth.
Angie: Mom, can we please hurry if we stop at home so it doesn’t dauer?
Angie: …Is dauer a word in English?
Mom: Not to my current knowledge.
Conversations like this happen quite often as well, seriously “dauern” should just be made an English word though, it’s so much faster than saying “to take a long time.” There’s also the frequent occurrence when I say, “achso!” or “stimmt” mixed in with English. “Genau” comes up quite a lot as well, simply commonly used German words. “Stimmt” almost got me in trouble with one of my more conservative friends though, he thought that was my way of not swearing and simply saying a bunch of consonants together, when really I was simply agreeing with him in German.
I have also brought a lot of the things I learned in Germany back to California with me, whether I meant to or not. For example, I have not used a dryer since coming back and rather made my dad set up a clothes line and have been hang-drying and ironing my clothes, just like in German. I find it silly how Germany has very little sun in comparison to California yet it’s rare to own a dryer in Germany, whereas in California it’s rare to hang dry our clothes.
People keep asking me if I’m happy to be back, and yeah it’s nice to gain some pigment in my skin and see my old friends and family again, but I guess I’ll always be a German-girl at heart.
Hah, talk about the fastest year of my life.