Last night, the neighbor two doors down from us held a party for the neighborhood. They planned this gathering several weeks ago. I found an invite in German with a handwritten note in English asking us to join them. We were asked to bring something to grill and a salad. Bill cooked ribs on the grill at home and made a minted cucumber salad, which was really good. He also brought a few of his homebrews.
Quite a few of our neighbors speak English, so we weren’t without people to talk to. Bill speaks some German and I understand more and more every day, although I still don’t speak it. It was nice to hang out with these people we’ve been living among for the past three years.
Bill bonded with the host when he shared his latest homemade beer, a red ale. The host liked it, although his daughter tried it and I don’t think she was all that impressed. I have a feeling Bill will be teaching him how to brew beer. We learned that the host and his wife and kids lived in Boston for a few years, so they are quite familiar with us Yanks.
Unfortunately, Bill got to talking beer with the host while we were heating up the ribs, so they got a bit overdone. Next time, we’ll bring wurst or something.
It was actually kind of interesting talking to the neighbors, especially the lady who lives next door to us. I learned that she was a nurse for years. She doesn’t speak much English, though she speaks more English than I do German. I learned that she was athletic as a youngster and likes to sing, as I do. And another neighbor is an opera singer. I’ve been known to sing a few arias myself.
Having great neighbors is a huge plus. I haven’t gotten to know the people in our neighborhood, but they’ve been tolerant and respectful of us. And now that we’ve partied with them, I think the mood will be even better. It will certainly be better than it was in Texas. Every day in July, when I look at Facebook’s “On this day” feature, I am reminded of the hell that was July 2014, as we were planning to move to Germany and I was recovering from my dad’s death. I must admit that it was absolutely worth it to move back here.
This was one of the beers our hosts offered us. It was an excellent dark beer. We’ll have to find it sometime.
Bill starts a new job today… well, it’s not a new job in that he’s working in the same office with the same people. It’s just a new company. So this week, he and his other colleagues who are joining the new company will be doing all of the administrative stuff that comes with starting a new job. I will need a new ID card, which is always a pleasure… NOT. But at least I’ll get to see Bill during the day sometime this week.
As we were socializing last night, I was reminded of how glad I am we didn’t have to move this year. Germany is really feeling more and more like home, which is sad, since I know I will someday have to leave. Oh well… for now, we will enjoy our good fortune.