My host mother in Austria (Doris) is having another baby! I arrive in mid-November, and her due date is February 18th. I am so excited to be a part of such an important time for their family. When they look back on the birth of their second child, I will be in those memories! Also, it’s good to note, my work schedule of 20 hours a week will remain unchanged. 🙂
My summer German class at the Goethe-Zentrum Atlanta is rolling along. The class only has two students: me and Yun, a Chinese woman a few years older than me. She is learning German and English at the same time, although obviously English is going more quickly, what with living in the USA. My teacher is German, a proud grandmother, and has lived most of her adult life in England and America teaching her native language. It sounds like the set-up for a reality TV show: three women, three cultures, three hours a week…and they can only speak German! (But I’m really learning a lot–and only two students means that I’m forced to continually speak!)
My German teacher says my accent is lazy–that I need to push the sounds harder. I think this is because I have a Southern (US) accent, the strongest characteristic of which is using the least amount of effort possible to pronounce words. However, my German professor at Agnes Scott told me on multiple occasions to “try not to sound like you’re hurting yourself.” So clearly, a middle ground is in order.
Next year, I will have friends living in Berlin, Zurich, and Brussels, so traveling options are looking very good! (Of course, I will also be doing solo traveling, but it’s always fun to visit friends.) My friend Nga and I are already planning a trip to Poland for March!
I just got fingerprinted and send my application for a background check to the FBI. (That involved a whole adventure at the Chamblee police department. Good times.) For my au pair visa in Austria, all I need is that background check and my birth certificate (both with apostilles for international use), and a transcript showing that I have taken at least six months of German classes. I apply for the visa once I arrive in Austria. For the record, this is about a thousand times more simple than getting my UK student visa!
I think that’s everything German/au pair related that’s going on right now. At the end of the month, I move out of my apartment to spend my last two months in the USA back at home with my family. Time is flying by!