• Berlins and Outs

    4 Ways We’re Learning German

    It looks like I’ll be signing up for another German class sooner rather than later because… I’m applying for a year-long residence permit to learn German! That’s right, we’ve found a solution to our residence permit problems! The Ausländerbehörde (foreigner’s office) will let me live here on my savings if it’s in the interest of learning German – I just have to study German 20 hours per week for 3 months, and they’ll give me a residence permit for the next year. This gives E and me plenty of time to find a cheaper place to live; and it gives me plenty of time to establish myself as a freelance…

  • Berlins and Outs

    I Never Expected to Learn German

    I studied Spanish for seven years and my favorite city in the world is Barcelona. While my Spanish is far from fluent these days, it’s still enough to get me through service interactions and daily life: ordering food, checking out at the grocery store, asking for directions. I kinda thought that if I was going to live abroad it would be in one of the dozens of countries where I already speak at least some of the official language (be it English or Spanish). And, before you say it, yes, many people in Berlin speak English. Earlier this month, I finished a 4-week beginners German class, and one of my…

  • Travel Inspiration

    Weekly Travel Linkspiration: language learning tips, “off the beaten path” travel, and small backpacks

    Here’s what you may have missed around the internet this month. terribleminds shares 25 Things Writers Should Know About Traveling, and makes me want to forget all about blogging in favor of writing fiction influenced by my travels. (Don’t worry, I’m going to keep blogging… I might start writing fiction on the side, though.) You know how my sidebar bio says, “I wish I were a polyglot,” well, Almost Fearless suggests we stop thinking about studying new languages as an obligation, and start doing things we love in the language we’re learning. She’s learning Spanish by reading magazines about cooking and celebrity gossip. Katie Aune says that common stereotypes about…