Sunday, October 14, 2007

It's been a while, hello again

To apologize for the hiatus would be to assume I have anything close to a regular reader base. I don't presume such popularity, and I know that more curious folks just write me an e-mail for bits of my life here. NEVERTHELESS, a highly condensed update ensues (perhaps in several entries):

In retrospect, the sudden disappearance of entries after late February can rather simply be explained: ...

(after which point my blog search for meaning in my doings abroad and a desire to alleviate my longing for home subsided to a desire for connection with friends and family)

When I first arrived in Hamburg the excitement of how new everything was dominated, alleviating the initial anxieties and loneliness I first felt. But as I grew into my community at the school where I worked, and got to know the students in the building where I live, and developed friendships with the other Americans on my program everything became very comfortable. And a year being a relatively long time, I could afford not to think about my return to the states and simply immerse myself deeper in the experience and soak up as much from it as I could.

However, my increasing affinity for this place, this culture, and these people opened me to the possibility of extending my stay, and led me to look into how to do it. My increasing affection for and connection to Katja play no small role either, of course... establishing the foundation, really, which gave me the courage to take the steps that followed. (of course, she is also a continuing inspiration to stay, and bring my new plans to fruition).

Thus, my German theater experience, which had initially been planned as a simultaneous part of my Fulbright year, was pushed to the end of my teaching assistantship and extended... the Thalia Theater had no problem with this shift, after all, they woud be getting more of my free labor. And I called up the other large, state-sponsored theater in Hamburg and was pleased to arrange a longer internship with them which would take me until Christmas.

As it turned out, following a relaxing summer including a few days in M√ľnchen, a week in Umbria, and a week long visit from my parents and brother, my experience in the scene shop at Thalia proved to be a very rewarding and fulfilling one, leading me to think seriously about applying for a 3yr apprenticeship with them (the ultimate opportunity to learn the trade of carpentry from a culture that values diligence, hard work, and skill).

While having moved on to my internship at the Deutsches Schauspielhaus, I have already drafted my application for the apprenticeship at Thalia, and continue to be excited by the prospect of working with them.

Before heading home for Christmas for three weeks, I will also spend several weeks in a non-theater, fine carpentry shop which I was connected to through a colleague at Thalia. Hopefully this will provide me with a broader perspective of this field here, and hopefully further solidify my growing commitment to this new path.


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