Do you like living in Germany?

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I've lived in Germany twice.  First time was from 07-09.  Husband was in the US Army, and we lived near Stuttgart.  We loved it.  I was highly pissed when we had to move back to the USA a year early, although that turned out to be fortuitous.  I pined for Germany for five years-- meanwhile, we moved three times to three states during those five years.  My husband retired in 2014.

 

A month after my husband left the Army, he was hired to come back to Stuttgart.  We were there for four years.  I mostly loved it that time, too, except we had the landlady from hell and are now in the process of suing her.  She basically abused us and ripped off our Kaution for bullshit reasons.  Fortunately, we have legal insurance.  Despite that, we had great times during our second Stuttgart stint, which I am now reliving as I update my blog from those years.

 

At the end of 2018, we moved to Wiesbaden.  We have a much better house and a much better landlord, though we pay a lot more rent.  My husband has a shorter commute and a job with a lot more stability (knock on wood).  He also makes good money.

 

I haven't been back to the USA since 2014 and don't miss it, although I will say Germany's novelty is wearing off a bit.  I think part of the problem is that we recently lost one of our beagles to cancer and I'm hesitant about trying to get a new one here because of the way some of my countrymen have ruined our reputation.  Also... as much as I like Germany, it really isn't home.  Sometimes I feel like I'm living in limbo.  And, if I'm honest, this mess with the ex landlady has really been a mindfuck for us.  I know it could have happened anywhere, though.

 

Overall, I'd say that I do like living here.  I like the expat lifestyle, to be honest.  I meet interesting people, learn new things, see fascinating places that I couldn't so easily see from the USA... plus I'm a bit insulated from Trump's idiocy.  But I do kind of miss home a little bit, and I need a new dog.  

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2 minutes ago, knotheadusc said:

we recently lost one of our beagles to cancer and I'm hesitant about trying to get a new one here because of the way some of my countrymen have ruined our reputation.

 

sincere condolences, but can I ask you to elaborate about your worries wrt finding a new dog?  I don't follow.

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45 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

 

sincere condolences, but can I ask you to elaborate about your worries wrt finding a new dog?  I don't follow.

We are in the U.S. military community and, unfortunately, in the past, a lot of people affiliated with the military abandoned their dogs at German shelters when they had a permanent change of station.  We have rescued five beagles in the States and would never dream of leaving one at a shelter, but not all military folks feel this way.  A lot of German shelters, particularly around U.S. military installations, will not allow Americans to adopt.  It was true in Boeblingen near Stuttgart and I've heard it's true in Wiesbaden.

 

Americans still do adopt animals, of course, either from other Americans or from other countries.  I know some people buy dogs from breeders, which I'd rather not do.  I have a German friend who is on the lookout for me, sending me constant pictures of dogs in other countries.  :D

 

We do still have one dog, but I'm used to having two.

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@knotheadusc Try the Erlangen Tierheim. They have no such issues. They have one truly awesome dog there named Otis. He is going to be one of the greatest dogs of all time. We aren't allowed a second dog at our place or I'd take him.

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There is no reason to abandon animals when you move.  We had a cat that lived in the US, Germany, Canada, Belgium and South Africa.  A lot of people have incorrect information about quarantines etc. that only apply to a few countries.  Of course there are costs involved, but that is part of the responsibility you accept when you adopt IMHO.  Besides, doesn't the military pay relocation costs?  

 

BTW, we had the landlord from hell in Boston, so that can really happen anywhere.  

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44 minutes ago, knotheadusc said:

We are in the U.S. military community and, unfortunately, in the past, a lot of people affiliated with the military abandoned their dogs at German shelters when they had a permanent change of station.  We have rescued five beagles in the States and would never dream of leaving one at a shelter, but not all military folks feel this way.  A lot of German shelters, particularly around U.S. military installations, will not allow Americans to adopt.  It was true in Boeblingen near Stuttgart and I've heard it's true in Wiesbaden.

 

Americans still do adopt animals, of course, either from other Americans or from other countries.  I know some people buy dogs from breeders, which I'd rather not do.  I have a German friend who is on the lookout for me, sending me constant pictures of dogs in other countries.  :D

 

We do still have one dog, but I'm used to having two.

 

that is atrocious!  I don't really blame the shelters for being dubious about allowing service members to adopt, but I hope they wouldn't extend that to Americans in general. I get there could be spill over.

 

I have found the tierheims around munich pretty miserable to deal with but it has had NOTHING to do with my american background.  Everything else under the sun, but not that ;)  thanks for the clarification.

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33 minutes ago, BradinBayern said:

There is no reason to abandon animals when you move.  We had a cat that lived in the US, Germany, Canada, Belgium and South Africa.  A lot of people have incorrect information about quarantines etc. that only apply to a few countries.  Of course there are costs involved, but that is part of the responsibility you accept when you adopt IMHO.  Besides, doesn't the military pay relocation costs?  

 

BTW, we had the landlord from hell in Boston, so that can really happen anywhere.  

 

For the most part, I completely agree with you that there's no reason to abandon animals when you move.  I never have.  Others in the military community have left animals, though, for whatever reason.  I suspect most of them abandoned them because of the costs involved with moving them or because they were sent somewhere where it's difficult to move them-- say Iceland (although Iceland is now kind of off the table for the military).  Or they were single people who got deployed.  But-- AGAIN-- I have never abandoned an animal.  

 

The military does pay most relocation costs, but they don't pay to relocate pets.  That doesn't have anything to do with us anyway, because my husband is now retired from the military.  He works as a contractor.

 

And again, I agree that landlords from hell can happen anywhere. I even said so.  

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15 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

 

that is atrocious!  I don't really blame the shelters for being dubious about allowing service members to adopt, but I hope they wouldn't extend that to Americans in general. I get there could be spill over.

 

I have found the tierheims around munich pretty miserable to deal with but it has had NOTHING to do with my american background.  Everything else under the sun, but not that ;)  thanks for the clarification.

Yeah, I haven't tried to deal with the local Tierheim yet.  We've been taking our time since we lost Zane, mainly because we've had travel and other things to attend to.  

 

We'll probably try to adopt from outside of the area, since it only appears to be an issue at Tierheims in areas where the military has a presence.  We do have a lot of locals who will vouch for us, too, and this time, we have a landlord who likes animals.  

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that's awesome. 

 

One thing that would help, if you don't have something like it already, is to get a letter from the landlord stating how many dogs they'll allow, any restrictions on size/breed and any other pertinent details regarding your agreement with them re pets.  This seems to be a must with adoption agencies around here.  Also, having something in writing is helpful regardless of how you acquire a pet, to avoid any future drama.  You just never know.

 

It might not hurt to get a couple of letters of reference from your friends, too.  Germans love letters :)  but quite honestly they do carry some weight as someone was willing to sit down and write it up, put their name on it, etc.  It counts quite a bit I think.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 2/5/2020, 11:06:10, programdirector said:

Nope completely wrong. Have a car, live in a city. Lived here 18 years.

Interesting surprised you’ve found it so hard here. 

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On 2/5/2020, 1:44:45, BradinBayern said:

There is no reason to abandon animals when you move.  We had a cat that lived in the US, Germany, Canada, Belgium and South Africa.  A lot of people have incorrect information about quarantines etc. that only apply to a few countries.  Of course there are costs involved, but that is part of the responsibility you accept when you adopt IMHO.  Besides, doesn't the military pay relocation costs?  

 

BTW, we had the landlord from hell in Boston, so that can really happen anywhere.  

What a wonderful post! Your cat accompanied you to 5 countries. I admire you greatly for that..I really do.

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3 years in and I can say I’d move back to Canada in a second, I live in Saarbrücken and find it very dull and dirty compared to home city of Vancouver, I’ve tried every possible way to meet friends and find work in my field but to no avail. 
 

Definitely not where I want to be but it’s either a life with my German wife here or leave it all and go back to nothing since I sold everything I own to come here.  
 

i wake up each day hoping something will change but someday I feel like I’m in that Bill Murray movie „Groundhog Day“

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Saarbrucken, Saarland. Former area of mining and heavy industry that has mostly closed now so I can understand where you're coming from. What is it you do?

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Oh I know!! Unfortunately I’m from a mining, heavy manufacturing background.

My career history is 27+ years in Technical sales, International business development in the mining and heavy equipment manufacturing/repair industries throughout Canada/USA/South America. 

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So you're in the right place, just wrong era. Have you thought about retraining? i assume your wife won't want to move.

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1 hour ago, Jodawa said:

3 years in and I can say I’d move back to Canada in a second, I live in Saarbrücken and find it very dull and dirty compared to home city of Vancouver, I’ve tried every possible way to meet friends and find work in my field but to no avail. 
 

Definitely not where I want to be but it’s either a life with my German wife here or leave it all and go back to nothing since I sold everything I own to come here.  
 

i wake up each day hoping something will change but someday I feel like I’m in that Bill Murray movie „Groundhog Day“

 

All sounds familar to me! I also faced that kind of choice (Sofie's choice to some extent). Certainly sucks, I know.

 

There's a ton of advice here - some of it actually useful - on how to meet people/make friends. Use the search function.

 

Good luck, for what it's worth.

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On 2/7/2020, 1:18:23, Jodawa said:

Oh I know!! Unfortunately I’m from a mining, heavy manufacturing background.

My career history is 27+ years in Technical sales, International business development in the mining and heavy equipment manufacturing/repair industries throughout Canada/USA/South America. 

yeah, sorry to hear about the issues. I'm an aussie who misses the hell out of living by the coast, that's for sure. I bet that's part of what you miss too (But I'm in Bavaria, beside a lake...it's better than NO water, but it ain't the sea).

otherwise, I have found it relatively easy to make new friends here (yeah, I'm super lucky)...But, I still can't replace those mates back home that I've known for 30 years (not that I want to, but you know what I mean)...i ride motorcycles, which gives me a very personal escape when I want it...as well as something to share with others, from any countr...i love chatting to peeps on the Alps in summer - english, italian, canadian, polish, whatever...all fantastic!

...it sounds a bit cliche, I suppose, but take up a hobby - ride a motorcycle, start a martial art or crossfit or squash or hiking...anything where you focus on a shared experience of "something", and you will make friends...it is defo a good idea to make friends outside your work group too!...again, it sounds cliche and old-fashioned, but it really does help...

 

...and you are right next to France...very cool. you have two cultures to choose from!

 

...and if you are ever down Bavaria way, let me know, we can catch up for a beer, share stories...

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On 7.2.2020, 11:49:51, Jodawa said:

3 years in and I can say I’d move back to Canada in a second, I live in Saarbrücken and find it very dull and dirty compared to home city of Vancouver, I’ve tried every possible way to meet friends and find work in my field but to no avail. 
 

Definitely not where I want to be but it’s either a life with my German wife here or leave it all and go back to nothing since I sold everything I own to come here.  
 

i wake up each day hoping something will change but someday I feel like I’m in that Bill Murray movie „Groundhog Day“

Ouch, from the most livable city in North America to Saarbrücken (rank 57 out of 71 in this report https://www.sr.de/sr/home/nachrichten/panorama/staedteranking_saarbruecken_100.html ) . 

 

No wonder you are disappointed.  I am coming from the Detroit area and moved to Chiemgau so my contrast is a bit different.  I think it is safe to say that it is not Canada/ Germany, but Vancouver/Saarbrücken that is the problem here.  Any way you slice it, you are going to find it tough to beat Vancouver, especially if that is where you call home.  

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Well the beer is very good, the countryside beautiful, the cities full of interesting history and monuments and museums, and people generally very nice, so on balance, YES!

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