365 days later

A whole turn of the calendar. A whole year in Germany. Twelve months ago, I made the reverse Columbus trip by going to the Old World, full of expectations, dreams, and some fear.

I got married. I began a whole new life among people whom I thought would be completely different from me. Time has taught me that they are more similar than I would have ever imagined.

A few weeks ago, a very old neighbor had to move out of our building, I think to a home, although her Alzheimer was quite advanced. Today, a new family is moving to her old apartment. It was days of drilling and hammering, but now it’s ready and they are moving in as I write these lines. They seem friendly. Yes, Germans can be friendly. But what I’m trying to get at is how life flows, how time passes and how often we don’t notice. Futility, transcendence, direction, all mixed together and conforming our daily being, our very existence.

Today I celebrate, for I started a life that I can finally feel my own next to a loving wife and the prospect of a future, of a family and, one day, dying in the certainty that it mattered. Even if it was just a bit.


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