4,673 miles to Germany.... from Nebraska, in case you were wondering....
Eric made it to Germany and has survived his first week! Actually, more that just survived, he's completely fallen in love with everything!
To help with his transition, Eric's sponsor was waiting for him at the airport when he arrived. She took him to exactly where he needed to be, introduced him to his Commander and other soldiers he'll will be working with, and had already gotten him set up with temporary lodging so that he would have somewhere to stay while looking for a place to live.
His Commander and his wife spent an afternoon taking Eric around downtown Kaiserslautern, and another Lieutenant went with Eric to meet with a landlord. Since Eric doesn't have his international drivers license yet, he has had to rely on others to drive him around, but it sounds like everyone is more than happy to help wherever they can! And for all of these things, I am so grateful! His transition has been gentle and he is loving it so far!
4,673 miles away from each other with a 7 hour time difference has made it difficult for us to coordinate things together, he's really had to make all decisions on his own. And the first major decision he had to make was where we were going to live! With my obsessive researching that I've been doing these last 8 months, I've come across how difficult it can be to find a place to live. It is impossible to get housing until you are actually in Germany and have gone to a housing brief. There is a website to go to to find rentals, but you can not contact a landlord until you are physically in Germany and have already been briefed!
There are LOTS of rentals, but it seems that the German rules about agreeing to a renter is different from what we are used to in America. When you do find a place, you have no time to think about it, you've got to jump on it right there and then! This means, go to a viewing with your paperwork ready and in hand!
I am SO excited though because Eric found us a place to live just days after landing! Isabelle and I will have a place to call HOME right when we walk off of the airplane! Since all of our things have been packed and sent to Germany, we haven't felt like we've been home for months now.
And to answer the 2nd most question I get asked: No, we will not be living on-post. On-post housing is scarce, so it's not likely that we'd get to live on-post anyway, but we wouldn't want to if we could. We are moving to Germany, we want to live as authentically as possible! The way we see it, this is an opportunity of a lifetime, we want to experience every little bit as much as we possibly can! We don't think we can do that if we're living on an American base the entire time. I'd feel jipped if we went all the way to Germany and we only did/see/ate American things. No, I'm not being delusional either, I know that there will be tons of things I will have to get used to, and frustrations that are sure to come with that, but it's part of the experience! And I want to experience all of it!
The movers came again today to get every last thing from our house to put in storage for the next 3 years. Now my house is almost completely empty (aside from a suitcase and a twin mattress in my living room) and I am just so darn ready to be with my husband! Only 18 more days until we are there, together again, and at home! 4.673 miles is just too many and FaceTime just isn't cuttin' it anymore....