Newcomer - Sankt Blasien

13 posts in this topic

Hello to everyone. Just a quick introduction, our family of four are moving to Sankt Blasien in July. We have two young boys, a dog and an older daughter currently at uni in Utrecht, NL. We have spent the last 2 years in Singapore and the previous six years in the German part of Switzerland. Americans by birth. Asia has been real with the haze and COVID but definitely looking forward to returning to Europe. I guess I am what would be called a hausmanner. Our oldest son will be at the Kolleg there and our youngest will start out in the local grundschule. Our vision right now is to make this our last move and settle into the Black Forest, eventually go off grid as much as possible and provide a safe haven for family as the world devolves into chaos.

 

I don't see a lot of expat activity in this area but once we get settled in and out of quarantine would be nice to meet others for a coffee or outdoor activity. Bis spater

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Off the grid in Germany, not really feasible, especially not in the touristy bits of the black forest.

Also I don´t want to disappoint you but the world is not going into chaos.

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With compulsory child education and compulsory health care, I'm not so sure what you mean by 'off the grid'.

 

Even villages in the Schwarzwald have electricity and very irregular (rare) outages.

 

 

 

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Well they might just mean off grid power wise.  So a passive house, or zero energy house.  And rainwater tank, plus grey water reuse, etc.

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3 hours ago, slammer said:

the world is not going into chaos.

That's a matter of opinion though isn't it? There are those who say that it already has been in a chaotic state for a very long time.

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Just now, lunaCH said:

That's a matter of opinion though isn't it? There are those who say that it already has been in a chaotic state for a very long time.

Define "chaotic state".

 

Things seem to be quite orderly to me, even in "wild and chaotic" Berlin, so I don't put much faith in those who say such things. In my experience, they have other issues and survive on externalization and projection.

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It's only been chaos for people who long for the 1850s. Me? I prefer not dying of the common cold and having refrigeration.

 

 

 

Oh, and not getting killed because I'm gay.

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Lovely area but very out of the way and inthe sticks.

I know the area quite well but don't expect the locals to come to you.

 

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1 hour ago, Malt-Teaser said:

Lovely area but very out of the way and inthe sticks.

I know the area quite well but don't expect the locals to come to you.

 

"Out in the sticks??" They eat their dead down there, talk about Badisch Kongo, it´s the place where family trees are pruned so that they look like Yucca´s, people have six fingers and the definition of a virgin is a girl that can run faster than it´s uncle, or brother

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Yeah i guess *off grid* is relative. Coming out of Singapore just looking forward to unplugging a bit and going back to nature. Eventually would be nice to literally go off grid (as much as possible) in terms of solar and food to some extent water. its not a comment on the hochschwarzwald but just a personal preference. 

 

Not our first go round being an expat. We will do our best to integrate realizing there will be those who are simply not interested in getting to know us not matter how often we go to church or volunteer or visit their shops or groups our kids share experiences in. that is fine. Most will though. I am cautiously optimistic. My experience is that a big part of locals not wanting to form relationships with expats is the expectation of expats leaving in 2-3 years. We don't plan on leaving the area but true we will have to see what the reality of life on the ground is like. 

 

Really at this point establishing a home base in Germany, Europe in general, is for the kids not for me. My time has come and gone and realize the last 30 years or so of my life won't be in a place that is native to me. I will always be the auslander/outsider simply because I spent 40 years as an American. Those are hard habits/biases to break. It's more than just speaking a language. We are basically reversing what our great-grandparents did and going back to Europe. The kids will have a better chance (we feel) at a good quality of life in Europe than America is basically what it comes down to. Doesn't mean I can't enjoy cross country skiing, hiking, biking and local people/customs though while we are there. FWIW our landlord has been incredibly helpful and understanding during our search for an apartment so we will take that as a good sign. 

 

A different conversation but my feeling is that America is on the brink of failing. Socially, politically, economically. Tomorrow, 5 years, 10 years. we had a good run but nothing lasts forever. Add to that climate change and a pandemic, well yeah not so optimistic

 

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I only know St Blasien from a few hours visit when in the Schwarzwald quite a few years ago now. I still remember sitting in the empty Dom surrounded by that amazing white space and feeling a most overwhelming peace. Outside in nearby gardens we listened to a panpipe concert and then had a lovely dinner in a restaurant by the river. The then children and dog seemed to appreciate the special atmoshere too! Lovely area.

Like all country areas you will be an exotic blow-in for a long time, same the world over, but it sounds like you'll be fine. Happy moving!

 

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