Friday, March 19, 2010

Relocation Made Simple - Get Yourself Out There!!!

It's that time again. We've just relocated from The Netherlands to Bavaria, Germany, and my first matter of business whenever I move to a new place - be it the next state or another country - is to meet as many people as I can. And - although we've lived in this little corner of the world before - meeting other people who have recently relocated has always proved invaluable in the settling-in process. Why? Well, who can better tell you about the best schools, banks, gyms, babysitters, etc.? They've been there, done that, and there's no reason to re-invent the wheel!

Here in Franconia there's a group called the International Women's Group and - get this - many of the women in that group are the spouses of roaming Siemens employees... talk about a match made in heaven! :)

I joined some of these women yesterday in the cobblestone-lined streets of nearby Herzogenaurach. We lunched at the the 360-year-old "Gasthaus zum Roten Ochsen", one of a handful of lobsided half-timbered houses on the city's oddly asymmetrical medieval market square, before heading over the the city museum, or "Stadtmuseum", to admire local art that in the form of quilts. Each quilt told a story, and we were fortunate enough to take part in a tour by one of the regions more renowned quilters - swiss born Anita Leutwiler (author of the very sweet children's book "Excuse me, is this India?"). Many of the exhibited quilts came alive as she explained the mediums that the artists had to work with and what some were thinking as they lovingly sewed each square.

The exhibit, which continues until March 21st, has rekindled my love of quilts and quilting. Fortunately for me, the President of the IWG actually offers private quilting lessons. If quilting isn't your thing, there are also Scrapbooking groups, book clubs, and coffee mornings. If you're in the area, check it out, and if not, find something similar in your neck of the woods! Afterall, it's all about making yourself at home, wherever you are.

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