Earlier today we had a virtual tour with Henry's potential new school in Germany. It was fantastic meeting face to face with someone I had been emailing with a bit, and seeing the beautiful school building! It's a newer building with big classrooms, bright spaces, science labs, technology labs, and a big gym. They answered lots of our questions and we just got a better feel for everything. We will definitely be applying once the visas come through and it's all more official!
These are things we want to do before we leave NYC... we've either done them before, but not in a long time, or it's just something we've never done before!
- Visit the Met & Cloisters
- Visit the 9/11 Memorial Museum
- Visit the MOMA
- See the Oculus train station
- Visit Governor's Island
- Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge & get pizza on the other side
- Walk the Highline
- Stroll through Central Park
- Visit the Tenement Museum
- Go to the Math Museum
- Eat Chinese food in Chinatown
- Eat Italian food in Little Italy
- Big Nick's
- Jefferson Market Garden
- Top of a building - Rock, Empire, WTC
- Battery Park carrousel
- Liberty Island
- UN Tour
- Walk through Grand Central
- Walk McDougal Street and walk through Union Square
- If we are still here, see the Christmas Tree in Rockefeller Center and do all the Christmas things!
10 years ago we landed in NYC...now it's time for a new adventure!
We have been chatting for a while now about where to move, or if we should stay in NYC. We absolutely love New York City, so it's a hard place to leave and every other city that we chatted about and considered felt like settling. It just wasn't right. Until this opportunity to move to Germany came up.
It all happened because I saw an acquaintance online spending a few months in Mexico with her children as the summer ended and the school year started. This is likely possible because she is either homeschooling, or doing virtual school - I am not sure which. And I thought, "Hey, we could do that!" After-all we just spent over 100 days in Pennsylvania during the peak of the pandemic here in NYC and Henry did great in school, what is stopping us from going further?
Where is the one place we'd like to go?
Well...the borders are closed to the U.S. due to COVID-19 and the United States being a complete dumpster fire when battling this pandemic (don’t get me started!), but perhaps we can still get work visas? Turns out that yes, we can! Maybe we can get a short-term assignment!
Joe took a look at the job board and low and behold, his same position was open in Germany as what he does now in NYC. Should he inquire about a transfer? This wasn't a short-term assignment. Sure, why not! Wouldn't hurt, we can always say no. We have inquired before for Germany and it didn’t pan out, we wouldn’t know if this one would either.
Long story short, they responded and wanted him to apply. Soon he had an interview set up, which went great and he was formerly offered a position. After quite a lot of research, endless discussion, and number crunching it boiled down to a pretty simple fact that if we didn't take advantage of this, we'd regret it.
So we are taking advantage!
The position is mostly virtual, Joe won’t need to be in the office regularly. We can choose where we want to live within Germany, as long as it has access to trains and planes so he can visit clients, once they start doing that in the EU. (due to COVID-19, they aren't visiting clients currently) We naturally started considering large cities, as we are very comfortable with NYC and love what large cities have to offer. Munich was the top of the list for a couple weeks. We looked at apartments online, watched videos about life in Munich, and even contacted the international schools, and a school that offered a German intensive language class for non-German speakers.
However, the more we researched, the more we hit a few roadblocks. First, apartments in Munich are very expensive. By NYC standards, they are more affordable, but not drastically. We could manage it, but the budget would be more limited. Second, and more importantly, only ONE school had ONE seat open for an 8th grade student. This school was one I couldn’t find many reviews of and it was an expensive international school. The spot could disappear before we even arrived in Germany.
So while we still considered Munich, we also started to research other cities. I have friends in Nuremberg and already knew there was an international school in the nearby Erlangen. So that was worth a look, of course! The rent was about HALF that of Munich, and the international school was more affordable. The international school has space available and looks fantastic. Erlangen also had a youth baseball team - which is highly important to this family!
The more we researched and discussed, it became evident that Erlangen was the right fit for us. We made that decision official yesterday! The area of Erlangen, Nuremberg and Fürth is all well connected by trains so we are a bit open to housing as long as the school is easily reachable by train, walking or bike as well as the train station, or a bus to the airport.
We are excited and nervous. Ready for adventure.