Back to business

Moin moin once again from the always grey and damp Hamburg. After soaking up rays in Miami and Italy over the summer and fall (gosh, that sounds snobby…), I’m back in Germany for what will hopefully be the next two years.

I’m currently waiting on my visa to finish processing until I can officially say (read: holler at the top of my lungs while acrobatically springing around like Super Mario) I have legal permission to live and work here. It’s been one heck of a struggle wrestling a yes from the pool of German government agencies. Meanwhile, I’ve been trying not to get kicked out of the country and filling my time with Netflix and acting in another University Players‘ production, Othello.

Witnessing the U.S. election, transition and now Trump presidency from abroad has been very interesting. I get many jokes about seeking asylum in Germany now that the former Apprentice host is Commander-in-Chief. Although I am an optimistic person, I do fear the worst, especially due to the behavior the first two days of his administration. Denying facts, criticizing truth-seekers and reporters, claiming that there is something called “alternate facts” — these are signs of an authoritarian regime. And as I see people’s posts on social media, I recognize that these hyper-partisan narratives bleed into the online conversation and may poison any chance we have for agreement.

As someone who has lived in many places, at home and abroad, the most valuable thing you learn is we are all people. We have multitudes. Irrational but real emotions overcome our reason and structured thinking. Yes, some people are born into hate. Yet some overcome it. Others cultivate their frustrations overtime and place blame on others because admitting mistakes is a learned practice. In the end, however, dialogue is the only way to build bridges. Understanding someone and how they are actually doing is vital. Not what their work schedule is like or how much short they are on rent that month but how that affects them and makes them feel. If this sounds gushy to you, that begs the question: why can’t you talk about emotions?

Well, that was an unloading. I’ll catch up soon. Enough of my thought pile-up for one day.

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