The future of this room is uncertain, and the forces lifestyle is one full of uncertainties: where will I be this time next year? Will my dad be at home? Will I live in a different house? Who’s leaving? Who’s staying?
These questions are regularly up in the air. But for me, there is always one constant certainty - Germany is my home.But it’s time to pack up our bags and move again, which brings me to the next certainty; every day from now on, I am going to miss Germany.
I will miss the bakeries and the ice cream parlours on every street corner. I’ll miss the unfailingly warm summers at the outdoor pools and freezing cold winters spent on the ski slopes. I’ll miss the Christmas markets. I’ll miss cycling everywhere (cyclists rule the pavements in this country, not pedestrians). I’ll miss the German traditions; whilst I’ve never been quite sure what exactly they are or why they happen, any excuse to dress up and get drunk is fine by me. I’ll miss the German cities which are so vibrant and rich in culture with beautiful, intricate architecture. I’ll miss the nightlife, however pricey it may be. I’ll miss the summer evenings walking through Gutersloh or Bielefeld and the brief, happy realisations of “how lucky am I to be here?” I’ll miss my friends who are people in the same boat as me, not quite from anywhere, never quite sure where they’ll be next. I’ll miss living within the military community intensely – every single last thing about it.
I’ll even miss natives’ somewhat dismissive attitude to queuing.Though this time there will definitely be no moving back, I have moved away from Germany before and I know how it's going to be. The first few weeks are hellish as it doesn’t seem to sink in that you’re not ever going to be returning. You feel like you’re on some strange, extended holiday in somebody else’s empty house for a little while. But one day something hits you and this is how it is now, you think. You need to move on. After that it starts to become manageable, the old memories you still long for are pushed into the back of your mind as new ones are created. Yet now and then, something will take you back; the scent of a certain food; an old photograph capturing a different time with gleeful smiles that reveal the world was kind to you and life was carefree; a school jumper with the distinctive crest; when it’s a scorching hot day and you wistfully think “god, I’d love to be at an outdoor pool”.
Moving away from a place you dearly love is like grieving not for a person, but for a life you once had. I was blessed for this one and I will never forget these incredible ten years in Germany.Whoever lives in this bedroom next will be lucky to have it.