So long, Farwell, Auf Weiderson, Good-bye to Bavaria!
My adventure in Germany has come to end. It has gone incredibly fast and I have thoroughly enjoyed living here! Gina and Peter have welcomed me with open arms and made me feel part of the family, I feel so blessed to have been able to stay with them. With the adventures we have had exploring different places and the stories shared, they have made my experience here a pleasant and memorable one! And the children – I’m going to miss their mischievous cheeky smiles and cute giggles!
In the past couple weeks here I decided to visit some of the kindergartens, as Germany has a reputation of great kindergarten systems. And being a nanny here and having connections with different families the directors didn’t mind me coming in for the day – very cool! The first kindergarten I went to took me on their excursion to a dairy farm (so not only do I get to experience a German kindergarten but also a German dairy farm – double win!). The other kindergarten was a Regio Emilia centre – it’s massive! It has 4 floors with different rooms dedicated to different “subjects” for example the arts/craft room, science, library, kitchen etc. It blows my mind how well it works! The children were gorgeous! They are taught to shake the adults hand when saying hello and to say goodbye… even to a complete stranger like me. They would confidently walk over, smile at me and hold their hand out waiting for me to shake it, at first I had no idea what they were doing, so not use to children doing that but what a beautiful practice! Many of them could speak a bit of English but if not they would whisper to the teacher and ask “how do you say ‘I love you’ in English?” Or “how do you say you’re pretty?” they won my heart that’s for sure!
I also got to go to Regensburg for a day. It’s has an old medieval section of the city which was kind of eerie. Many long narrow ally ways which are pretty cool but also can be kinda scary when you’re travelling alone! Especially when there’s many foreigners in the city. A lady with a 5 and 15 yr old approached me begging for money. I don’t like the idea of just giving money when they could be spending it on anything or perhaps even scamming me, so I brought them each something from the nearby bakery, and if they were genuinely poor/hungry then at least I helped out. It took me a while to figure out what they where actually asking for (language barrier). It always challenges me to see people on the street like this, and homeless people. I don’t know their situation but I know that the government would help them out if they only seek the help. And when they don’t I have to wonder. It makes me sad to see them not living up to their full potential! How did they get to this place on the streets, why are they still there, can’t they see there is more in life for them, why does no one encourage them? So many questions rise within me and I want to help them but not by simply giving them money and saying good-bye. Anywho… this pondered in my mind for half the day, bothering me, but other than that I walked around the city, walked over the famous stone bridge, had a look inside the incredible cathedral, took a little bus tour that was in English (yay) and before I knew it I was home again.
Oh, I also climbed Mt Arber – the highest mountain in the area! And have been to a medieval festival at the castle! So cool to see people dressed up and doing various shows such as sword fighting and fire shows. We really need to up our festivals Australia! 😛
A travel quote I have come across is “When overseas you learn more about your own country than you do the place you’re visiting.” – Clint Borgen. This is so true! You see other countries and the way of doing life which makes you question your own country and why you do things the way you do. It’s all interesting when travelling – I love it!
Tonight, being the last here, my wonderful host family organised a farewell BBQ dinner for me and invited all the people I’ve come in contact with during my time here. It was a great night! Many laughs had and stories told. They have instructed me that I cannot write on my blog some of the crazy things about Germany – I might get into trouble so I’ll wait until I leave Europe…. Then write them, then they will have to come find my in Australia 😀 haha. But I have made some wonderful connections here and I feel sad to be leaving already!
Well, I hate goodbyes so I won’t say goodbye – I’ll say the good ole Aussie version; “See ya later Bavaria!” (and I’m sure I will!) Half of you are already expecting me back to experience a winter here! I will one day for sure 😀
Bring on this next season of ‘Upward Bound’ in the Austrian Alps! Keep me in your prayers as I do crazy challenging activities on the mountains whilst digging deeper into God’s word – super excited for this experience! Day one is on Monday – Lets see how this journey turns out!