Hi everyone. I know I’ve mentioned how crazy everything is with me right now. Trying not to stress and just take things one day at a time. One of the things I’m focusing on right now is getting my driver’s license for Germany. It’s a lengthy and painstaking process to say the least. One day I woke up and realized that my American license was no longer valid because of how long I’ve been over here, so I had to start the process of switching over. That meant having to sit two Sunday’s ago for a first aid course. Thank God that’s over with. Then I have to get my license officially translated, which isn’t really much since an American license only contains basic info. Though I could go into the place ADAC (Kinda like AAA, I guess) and get it translated in a few minutes. Okay, that has to take two weeks…
Then I have to take a written test, which is nothing like the one we take in the States. About 946 questions that you have to study and on the test will be 30 of them, and you’re only allowed to get 2 wrong. Okay…. Been busting my ass studying those questions, which involves physics, formulas for calculating stopping speed and a whole bunch of stuff about cars I never heard before. I got frustrated and took a break after studying for about three weeks, thinking I could take the test whenever I was ready. Um…No. Then I found out I had to wait another 4-6 weeks after sending an application to the agency in charge of all that, and get this, wait on them to give me an appointment of when I can take the test. Which means I’ll have to get cracking on studying again, to refresh everything I learned.
And throughout it all, I’m taking driving lessons from an instructor on how to drive a manual. There was no need since we had an automatic here. When that car started acting up, we ended up getting a manual, which I keep stalling. Not so good. To keep both of us from going crazy, hubby and I agreed a third party would be better at teaching me. So far so good, can’t wait to become more proficient at handling a stick though 🙂
So that was my long story and now to switch to something else. My friend Kortny Alexander is having a contest over on her blog to promote her book Come And Get Me being released in paperback. she’d bundling this with Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so please if you love her books, take a look.
14 thoughts on “Wednesday Update”
Wow! I certainly wish U well Ms.Hunt! Talk about a culture transitions..tell me wat was it like the culture shock or blending into a new environment? I believe U guys perhaps drive on the..left side of the road:0?? How long have U leaved N Germany:D? U probably been asked this repeatedly by fans..((giggle))I hope U dont mind but Do U speak German fluently? U no my baby girl ,(teenager:)just recently returned from a trip 2 Japan with her school..OOOH my read it was life changing..my Jalana(even though,she’s the baby of the family..this old soul has NEVER acted liked the baby:) She’s taken Japanese 4yrs N high school eats ,sleeps & breaths Asian culture..Jalana cant stop talking about her adopted country((giggle))! One day I’d luvvvv 2 visit different countries,learn & meet people.My life has been changed also my horizons have been broaden through the eyes of my Beautiful Jalana (as N Lana Turner the old Hollywood starlit:) God bless U with UR studies!!!
Thanks Ruby. It’s not such a big culture shock, but there are some things that takes getting used to. The biggest one is that the Germans love rules and hardly stray from them. We drive on the right. It’s been over a year since we moved here from the states, but before my husband and I were married, I lived here for 2 years with him. He’s German. I wouldn’t say I’m fluent in German. My husband and kids are, but I speak enough that I can get on daily without any problems, can maintain friendships with people who only speak German, and watch television, listen to radio and such and understand almost everything being said. Not fluent but capable.
I’m jealous of your daughter, because I would love to visit Japan. I also fell in love with the language because I’m a big Sailor Moon fanatic and watched the episodes in Japanese with English subtitles. Hopefully you and your daughter can do a lot of traveling together.I have New Zealand down as the furthest place I want to go 🙂
Oh wow! Good luck with the test! We should probably do the same thing over here.
Thanks. I’m annoyed with the questions, but overall, I think it IS a good thing, since it forces you to really be knowledgeable about how a car works and safety issues. I do have to give the Germans credit for it, because accidents are rare to see on the roads. I’ve only seen one since I got here, and it was a minor fender bender.
Guess i’m lucky I live in Finland. I’m also an ex pat (American living abroad). All I had to do was give the Finnish government my US license and I got a Finnish license. No muss no fuss :-). Went I went to the states for a visit, I picked up a new license. But, it might be different nowadays. I moved here in 98 and obtained my license immediately…now in 2012 things my have changed. As you know, I love that european licenses (at least in Finland and France (lived in both) are valid until you turn 70). 🙂
You are lucky Renee. Here it depends on which U.S state your license was issued in. Some states have a full agreement with Germany and the license holder doesn’t have to do anything to get a German one. I have a Florida license, which means I only have to take the written test. I’m taking the driving lessons because I want to be a better driver with a manual transmission. The German license is for life I think. So that is a plus, if I ever pass the test 🙂
I think things here are probably different now. I got my Finnish license 14 years ago.
How do you like Germany? Have you had any problems there because of race? I’ve been there a few times no longer than a week and felt…uncomfortable. I got a lot of pretty hard stares. I felt perfectly at home in Austria…I’m curious how the transition was for you. For me, it was fairly easy, but i’d just spent 2 years in France before moving here which I think helped a great deal.
What have you found most difficult with learning German? I speak 7 though i’ve lost my ability to most due to lack of use. I have 4 degrees in languages in fact, but they didn’t really help me with learning Finnish. Usually when you learn a language you can piggy back your knowledge of others with the new one. Not so with Finnish..it’s an ugly language and very difficult. Mainly, I think, because it is in a completely different language group…nothing to borrow from.
Are you planning to get German citizenship? What do you have to do to get it?
The only thing that takes getting used to is the amount of paperwork to do just about anything, and the feeling that a lot of things here aren’t questioned, but just accepted for the way it is, including horrible customer service. German wasn’t that difficult for me to grasp, because I learned it while living here. The only thing that still plagues me are the articles. There is no rule for defining if an object is masculine, feminine or neutral, so sometimes it’s a guessing game for me, kowing if I should use die, der, das, eine,ein and all the other cases. I learned Spanish in school, but forgot all of it due to learning German. My brain can’t handle more than 2. I have no idea if I will get my EU citizenship, maybe, but for now I’m content with my Jamaican and American citizenship, although I plan on living here forever. I can’t even imagine what I would need to do to get it, although I must admit the permanent residence status is a lot simpler than in America and waaaaaaay less expensive.
I remember very little from my high school German :-). I meant though when you first went to Germany…was it difficult to learn?. Has race ever been an issue for you there?
Hey Renee. I realized later that I didn’t answer part of your question. No, race has never been an issue for me. Weird as it may seem, but I actually feel like I blend in more over here than in America. There were instances in America where I felt people wanted to stereotype me because I’m black, although it was always subtle enough not to be able to tell if I was 100% correct in my assumption. Here, though, I’ve never felt that way. Everyone has always been friendly toward me, I don’t get any strange looks, if anything people will just smile at me. I also find strangers here to be very helpful, I’m never surprised anymore when a man opens the door for me, which was a rare occurrence in America. The other teachers and moms at my children’s Kindergarten, all treat me the same, like just a normal person, even though I’m the only black mom there. So all in all, I feel very at home here in Germany.
As for the language. When I came here for the first time, I was 20, on study abroad program. I only knew how to say Guten Morgen and Auf Wiedersehen. I took a beginner’s course and watched my favourite soap opera at the time The Bold and The Beautiful every morning. In the beginning I couldn’t make out where one word started and the other ended. Every week it got better until I could actually understand things. I didn’t find the language hard to learn, except for what I mentioned with the gender of objects, because a correct sentence structure depends very heavily upon that.
Knowing those things is impossible for anyone who hasn’t been speaking German for a very very long time, because there is no rule and kids just growing up learning it from hearing all those words. If it’s a new word to me, I’ll guess what gender I think it is, and use the correct term for it, ein and then whatever the noun is or eine, einen. Depending on if I’m talking about location, which would then be einem, einer, einen… Ugh. Thanks God it’s not so hard anymore though to even remember when to use those different terms. People understand I’m not a native speaker, so they don’t care and sometimes when you speak, most people won’t even notice if you use the wrong term. That’s really about it, the only issue I have with the language. If Germany was a bit warmer, I’d be over the moon 🙂 Hope my answer wasn’t too long!
Good Lord Delilah. Had no idea you had to have a phd in order to take a driver’s license test overseas. I wonder if all countries are like that? Wow! Good luck with it though. I know you’ll do fine. Miss you on Facebook.
lol. I know right. When I first heard 946, I thought it was a mistake. But um…no. So back to studying for me. How are things going with you? Thanks a bunch for stopping by. We really do need to catch up!
Things are well with me, I promise to stop by at least a few times out of the month. Congrats with your new releases!
Hugs and best wishes in all that you do ; )
Hey Charisma. Thanks for the well wishes. I’m not that much in the writing world anymore because of life in general, so I’m not up to date with everything, but I want to wish you the best with all of your new and upcoming releases as well.