Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Another Transatlantic Slog

Wir haben gelandet. Two planes, two trains, and two automobiles eventually got us from Seattle to Freiburg this week. (Add one plane and several more cars if you want to add Berkeley to the equation.)

On the planes, Myrna slept quite a bit and, on the whole, wasn't difficult to fly with. We slept a bit too, and even caught a movie, as last year's Palm d'Or winner, The Class, was playing onboard. Believe it or not, that was only the second film either of us had seen since March. What else...? Ah, I said that Myrna was very civilized, and that's true, but she did go through three changes of clothes. One, in particular, was a bit of a disaster, as our flight from Seattle to Washington D.C. was on a plane that had no changing table. We were told that people usually just change their babies on top of a turned-down toilet lid but, c'mon, no they don't. Also, my iPod decided to announce its demise somewhere over the Atlantic. This is particularly well-timed, as iPods are almost 30% more expensive here.

Then came the trains, which went much worse, only because we were now wholly responsible for transportation and management of our five suitcases, three backpacks, one diaper bag, and one stroller. You know that logic game where you're a farmer and you've got to get a fox, a chicken, and a bag of grain across a river in a small boat? It's like that, but crossed with Without A Trace. This resulted in miscommunications, misplaced tickets, and an obscene spectacle wherein I pushed an over-capactiy luggage cart down a cobblestone street and, stuck in a mini-pothole, poured all of our suitcases off the cart and onto the sidewalk in front of dozens of locals and tourists.

The cars, on the other hand, were little miracles. On both ends of the trip, we managed to pack all of that stuff into cars not designed for freight. That was thanks to a lot of good, creative help.

Anyway, we're now in Freiburg. About half of our permitting and registration is complete. We're not into our apartment yet, but we've at least seen the neighborhood. And we've already started in on the Ritter Sport. Jet lag is riding all of us pretty hard, with Myrna furious that we didn't get up to play at 1:00am. But after two hours or so, she stopped screaming and went back to sleep - no big deal... The day after, she's been in a better mood, and has had her first brush with autonomous mobility. Starting this afternoon, she's been rolling from her back to her stomach as a way of getting closer to out-of-reach toys. Which means that we've only got a few more weeks before we'll have to find a better place for our antifreeze, Bunsen burners, and box of live scorpions than on the floor next to the coffee table. We'll keep you posted as this develops.


Jody L. said...

How long in Frieburg? Are you back in Germany to live again, or just temporarily??

Jody L. said...


Chris Burkhalter said...

It's been kind of whirlwind getting from Berkeley to Freiburg (by way of a four-day trip to Seattle). We're not into our apartment yet, but saw it yesterday. We're getting to know the city. Anyway, we plan to be here until the end of September.