Before I left in September, I posted a few thoughts about what I was packing and why. Now I’ve been here long enough to evaluate whether I made the right choices, and since the only other thing I’m doing right now is translating e-mails into German and reviewing a bunch of articles about risk management, I figured I’d share some thoughts.
I shouldn’t have brought my hairdryer. Electricity configurations are different between the US and Germany, and not only does my hairdryer not really work with my adapters (the plug is too bulky), it uses 125 volts, but German outlets use 250 volts. You can probably tell by the wording of that that I have no idea how any of this works, but what I do know is that when I tried to use my hairdryer, even on the lowest setting, it was crazy powerful and super hot and probably would have melted itself. There is an option to change it to a 250 volt configuration but after months of trying, the switch will not budge. I definitely use a hairdryer on a daily basis, but I would have been better off buying one here (or, as it stands now, borrowing one).
I should have brought Tylenol or Motrin. Obviously these things exist here, but it would have been nice to HAVE the meds when I got a headache/sinus infection/cramps instead of needing to go out and buy them while sick and in pain.
I can’t decide about my shorts. I brought them, but right now that seems to have been useless. Or at least that’s how it feels now considering the temperature has been in the 30s all week and the winter is just only beginning! I’m sure I’ll feel differently come June. 😉
I brought 4 books, which was really nice on the plane and during the many hours I’ve spent on public transit, but now I’m finished with all of them, so they’re just dead weight. If I had been smart, I probably would have bought a Kindle, but I’m still an old-fashioned paper kinda gal.
I’ve been able to borrow German-English dictionaries, sheets and bed linens (thanks to the Brauns), a stopgap ski jacket until mine gets here at Christmas (thanks Aggi), and furniture.
I’m glad I waited to buy winter boots, winter hat/gloves, additional warm sweaters. It’s easier to find such things here rather than in Texas (in August). I’m pleased with my purchases so far!