It’s been a week since my last travel post, mainly because I’ve been pretty busy with preparing for our move to Germany. One week from today, the move begins in earnest. Some of our stuff is presumably already on its way. The cars go on Monday and barring any disasters, should arrive within three weeks of being shipped. Maybe we’ll see them in early September.
I joined a few Facebook groups for Americans in the Stuttgart area and, I have to say, had this not been our second move to Germany, I would be extremely grateful for their existence. When we moved last time, we didn’t have these Facebook groups with their very up-to-date information. I still anticipate some pain on the German side of this move, but it’s not as bad as it might be if we were landing there blind, like we did last time.
Yesterday, we went to Randolph Air Force Base to buy a new case for my new laptop and a mouse so I don’t have to use the trackpad, which I can’t stand. Whenever we go there, it feels kind of odd to me. It looks just like the AAFES in Stuttgart at Panzer Kaserne, which is where the facility is located. I know it well, because we were there a lot during our first tour. Although almost five years have passed, it almost feels like we were just there. It’s very odd to me. I guess the older you get, the faster time flies and the more it seems like some things were just happening yesterday.
I know there have been some changes in the Stuttgart area. For one thing, Panzer now has a hotel that was being built when Bill and I were there in 2009. We won’t be staying there because it’s booked solid. Besides, Bill and I would rather not stay on post. I don’t even know if we’d be allowed to, since he’s retired now. I think it’s going to be weird adjusting to Bill as a civilian, wearing his own clothes instead of a uniform. On the other hand, I think this job will be better for him than a job at a big four accounting firm would have been. He relates well to military folks and that work interests him.
I’ll miss him in his ACUs, though… He looks great in his uniform. I think we’ll miss all the consideration you get in the military, too… like being able to take care of personal business sometimes during business hours. This move may be harder for us in some ways. On the other hand, we have the benefit of knowing and loving the area already. It’ll turn out okay, I think. It just may be a challenge at first. Once we’re there, I have a feeling we’ll be able to stay as long as we want to, as long as Bill stays a contractor.