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How the Journey Began

How did the journey begin? When high-school graduation rolled in, the spell had been cast: the boys got together with their female classmates. The first went off to work for their family business, and the later embraced their traditional housewife roles. I had neither a prospective job nor romantic affairs, but the growing notion that I had been sitting in the proverbial cave, watching shadows come and go. I didn’t know what was out there, but staying was not an option.

Something kept pushing forward, something that demanded to be lived out.

Linguist Gone Foreign, Language and foreign culture comics, journey, unraveling foreignness, cupid, into the unknown, after high school

15 Years Living Abroad

Today 15 years ago I boarded a plane to Berlin with a one-way ticket. What started as an expat fling turned into a long-term journey starring the glory and the horrors of life abroad. It’s been 15 years unravelling foreignness across twenty countries, and I can truly say that I’m home abroad. It’s been a wild ride and, despite the hardship, I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

So, in order to celebrate this milestone, I’d like to share with you some corny words from the illustrated book that I intend to publish someday:

“Moving abroad means moving past everything you deemed as normalcy. It means leaving one world behind and stepping into a disorienting universe of novelty, a challenging puzzle of strangeness waiting to be understood, and that’s precisely the beauty of it. It is then, on your own, amidst the unfamiliar and the uncertain, that you get the one in a million chance to reinvent yourself. You can start anew, unfold your powers, and be whoever you would like to be.”


Linguist Gone Foreign, Berlin, moving abroad, relocation, expat life, migrant stories, cartoons

Fastest Things on Earth

Germans are linearly challenged. For a highly efficient and well-organized society, one would think that getting your groceries would be a rather methodical and uneventful task. However, rules seem to fly out the window when it comes to following a straight line.

Whether you are trying to board a train or waiting at the checkout register in a store, Germans will wobble around, squeeze their way in, and often cut in front of each other. And beware of additional registers opening! The checkout area will promptly turn into a slaughtering sprint arena where manners and order of arrival cease to have any meaning.

Why, you ask? Who the hell knows. It’s an organizational anomaly, and a rather excruciatingly obnoxious one.

Expat Gone Foreign, culture comics, linearly challenged, Germans can't queue, lines