The changes I’m experiencing here happen slowly. In a given moment, I usually feel like I’m still pretty much the clueless, overwhelmed fish-out-of-water I was when I got here in April. But really, things have changed.
I went out this evening, just to take a break, after Dan got home from work. I walked to the bakery on the next block and picked out a doughnut that I wanted, ordered in German, actually got what I had asked for, paid in Euros (and even understood the price when the guy behind the counter said it) and waved goodbye when I was leaving, because I go in there a lot, and this was the guy who is the most helpful to me when my German fails me.
I walked down the street to the Starbucks and got a coffee. I didn’t bother to order in German there, because no one seems to mind, and “Grande Decaf Caramel Macchiato” is Italienglish anyway. I picked a spot outside, read my book and walked home. I didn’t need to consult a map or check any street signs. I’m able to move through the crowds like someone who knows where she’s going . . . because I do.
I’m learning a little German, and I’m learning my way around. It gets a little better all the time.
In fact, if you could have shown the me of 4 months ago a preview of my little adventure today, I think I would be impressed and pleased that things were going so well. So, I think that’s exactly what I’ll be: impressed and pleased. Go me.