Servus! (hi!) Now, what the hell is this?
Ok…I’m sitting in terminal 1 of O’Hare airport, waiting for my flight to Vienna via Frankfurt. With plenty of time to spare before my flight to Euroland, I gave into the itch to start blogging.
So what is this…another travel blog? I hope not.
I’ve vacillated over the last year over whether to start a blog about my experiences in resettlement and integration into Viennese society. Finally, through continual prodding by family and friends, I’ve decided to give blogging about it a shot. It’s not without some trepidation, though; more on that later.
Rather than wax lyrical about coffee culture, marvelous museums and blissful brunches (although it’s hard to image writing about life in Vienna without mentioning those facets from time to time), I want to delve into the more complex, human aspects of adjusting, namely the pain and pride that comes from learning to accept my new city and country of residence as “home.”
So along with that comes a warning: there are going to be comparisons between the US and Austria…oh, will there be the comparisons! But in defense of this, don’t we all come to understand our world through comparative reflection? Also, I promise not to pull punches for either side. Honest…
Another promise I’ll make here is that I’ll do my best to avoid all the tired, Euro/US clichés. If I do touch on them, I’ll try to come to those topics from a less-traveled perspective. I hope you all hold me to this! Ultimately, I see this eventually both criticizing and elevating my native and new cultures.
Me in my words
New to blogging, old to traveling and living abroad. Although I have to admit that, on that last point, it’s been a while since I last did it (roughly 13 years have passed since I left my life in Zagreb, Croatia to move back to the US). That means I’m really out of practice when it comes to wrapping my head around unfamiliar surroundings, which as you might suspect leaves me with feelings of excitement and anxiety.
I’m from a midsize US city, following my wife to Vienna, Austria. It’s been a dream of ours to move to Central Europe, and bit-by-bit I’ll be going through the nuances of that dream and how it came to be. No, I don’t have a job lined up, and many of my friends don’t believe for one second that I intend to look for one (they’re wrong!)
I’ve got some German language skills to throw at this challenge, but they’re rusty and contorting my knowledge of German to Vienna’s dialect will take some patience and determination. At least at some point I’ll be speaking a variety of German that native speakers of German use, rather than High German (really, who speaks that on a regular basis, aside from foreigners?).
This is my (minor) ethical conundrum at the moment: blogging, in general.
Maybe I’m just an old dog having trouble adapting to all the narcissistic trends in today’s way of life…but then again, I was an early adopter of Facebook and never once thought about walking away from my profile on that platform. Maybe I don’t think anyone will really pay attention to all this blathering. I haven’t quite sorted all of this out in my head, but regardless I’m taking the plunge. There is the obvious benefit of folks back in the US being able to follow my (mis)adventures, but for me the biggest plus for embarking on this is the prospect of the activity helping me digest my frustrations and fascinations that will surely come to pass in this new life.
Till next time…Servus! (bye!)
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