Expat Living in Germany - Interview with Morgan

Published: 2 Jun at 9 AM
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Filed: Interviews,Germany
Hello! Morgan is a Californian who loves to travel. Exploring different cultures, and foods, is what fills her drive to explore. When she's not traveling, she enjoys running, reading, cooking, crossfit and gardening. Rain or shine she's always ready to go on an adventure, and in fact keeps an overnight bag packed at all times just in case a great opportunity arrises. Morgan's expat blog is called JandMHatch (see listing here)

Visiting the Beauty and the Beast town of Colmar, France
Visiting the Beauty and the Beast town of Colmar, France

Here's the interview with Morgan...

Where are you originally from?
I am originally from the City of Angeles aka Los Angeles, California.

In which country and city are you living now?
I am currently living in Grafenwoehr, Germany.

How long have you lived in Germany and how long are you planning to stay?
My husband and I have lived here for one year, and hope to stay here for at least three more!

Excited to move to Germany!
Excited to move to Germany!
Why did you move to Germany and what do you do?
We moved here because my husband is a Dentist serving in the United States Army. I like to think I have many jobs: I work as a contractor in the dental clinic as a Dental Hygienist, I am a "domestic engineer" at home, an avid travel planner by night,and I am a self-employed gardener when the sun is out.

Did you bring family with you?
Just me and my husband...so far!

How did you find the transition to living in a foreign country?
The transition of moving across the world can take some getting used to; for instance, learning how Germans recycle is much different than in the United States. I was worried when moving overseas that my appliances would not work, but luckily for transformers and converters there is no problem! While totally immersing into a new lifestyle can be really hard, I've learned that a smile can go a long way, and joining organizations that keep you busy can open up doors you never imagined!

Was it easy making friends and meeting people; do you mainly socialise with other expats?
I joined a church group here, and a few other social activities like a crossfit class at my local gym. It has helped me to meet fellow expats who are in the same situations as myself. I have also met a few locals through taking language classes in the city center.

Trying raw herring in Amsterdam
Trying raw herring in Amsterdam
What are the best things to do in the area; anything to recommend to future expats?
I would recommend a bicycle. The roads are so well paved and flat that a bike ride through beautiful fields is a must! There are lots of local hikes and once you feel comfortable driving on the autobahn I would recommend traveling to other towns to explore different sights and smells!

What do you enjoy most about living in Germany?
I enjoy the relaxed pace of life and the spring time when all the flowers come into bloom.

How does the cost of living in Germany compare to home?
It is cheaper to live here than in Los Angeles. Groceries on the economy are cheaper, fresher, and more delicious. While gasoline is more expensive (it is charged by the liter) I use a military card to pay US prices for gas. Although the euro is favored over the dollar right now, things are priced pretty much the same.

Biking through Tuscany on a Vespa!
Biking through Tuscany on a Vespa!
What negatives, if any, are there to living in Germany?
Being so far from home, and the time change. It is harder to talk with my friends and family because when they are waking up, I am just getting to bed!

If you could pick one piece of advice to anyone moving to Germany, what would it be?
Don't let the fear of the unknown get to you, enjoy the process and look forward to all the fun you will have in a new country.

What has been the hardest aspect to your expat experience so far?
Not seeing my family as often as I would like.

When you finally return home, how do you think you'll cope with repatriation?
The hardest thing to cope with will be the jetlag. I may forget to say "thank you" in English and I will miss the simple pleasures here, but it will be a sweet new beginning.

Our Wedding
Our Wedding
What are your top 5 expat tips for anyone following in your footsteps?
  1. Travel as often as possible, take advantage of being in the heart of Europe.
  2. Write down your experiences and take lots of photographs to share, even if you keep them to yourself, you will enjoy looking back on all the fun.
  3. Join a gym, church, club, or develop a skill with a friend. Staying busy and having friends is important!
  4. Shop on the economy. Don't be afraid to enter a grocery store just because you don't understand the language, you can learn so much about the local foods and desserts in the economy.
  5. Make sure you understand the recycling rules, and when the German holidays are, especially in Bavaria. Since Bavaria is very Catholic, there are lots of holidays that are observed in which the town shuts down.
Tell us a bit about your own expat blog.
I write a lifestyle and travel blog about living abroad in Germany. My posts range from travel destinations to daily life where you can read about the subtle yet interesting differences about living abroad.

How can you be contacted for further advice to future expats coming to your area?
I can be contacted through my blog at: www.jandmhatch.blogspot.com Click on the Contact Page!

About the author

Expat Blog ListingMorgan is a expat living in Germany. Blog description: Lifestyle and travel blog about living abroad in Germany, ranging from posts about travel destinations, to daily life posts where you can read about the subtle yet interesting differences about living abroad
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