Preparing a 3-year-old for travel with a playdough Brezel

Even though our trip to Germany (and other exciting parts of Europe) is still months away, knowing the nature of my little almost-three-year-old, I decided to get started on talking about the trip early.He's the kind of kid who loves routine over change but did pretty well on our trip to Melbourne … [Read more...]

Multicultural Christmas mash-up to maximise the fun

I've always loved Christmas, and have very fond memories of leaving out a can of beer and a couple of carrots on Christmas Eve, ready for Santa and his reindeer to stop by and fill my sack with exciting gifts. (Curiously, although the beer can was always empty the next morning, the carrots were … [Read more...]

Communism in Europe, and how weird that all was

Communism was (and continues to be) weird. I make no apologies for that title. But the thing about weird things is that they get me totally intrigued and I just have to keep knowing more. I grew up in the 1980s when it was accepted that Europe was divided into two, and when my family took our trip … [Read more...]

Review: Rough Guide to Germany

I'm always rather keen to check out guide books on countries I know well - I can compare what the writers say to what I know from reality - so I jumped at the chance to review a new guide to Germany. Sometimes the info adds up, sometimes it doesn't. I'm not necessarily a fan of using guide books any … [Read more...]

That strange building in Frankfurt, Germany …

On my big first trip, 25 years ago in Europe, regular readers will remember that I kept a diary of some of the highlights, or at least what seemed like highlights to the mind of a nine-year-old. Apparently, in Frankfurt, Germany, a city which I have to admit I'm still not thrilled with despite … [Read more...]

I want to ‘Go with Oh’ to Berlin

"I want to Go with Oh", I read with increasing glee, These people want to send a blogger on a travelling spree! Of all the cities listed, and they’re ten of Europe’s best, It’s Berlin that’s got my heart thumping harder in my chest. I’ve scraped the surface of Berlin, three times, maybe … [Read more...]

Learning Japanese in German with a French friend

Mixing languages is a whole lot of fun. Let me prove to you why! I had an online conversation recently with an ex-student of mine from Japan (hi Junko!) who's just moved to New York to work for the Japanese consulate there (yes, a dream job in a dream city - but she deserves it!). She was trying to … [Read more...]

Guest post: What I discovered in Berlin’s hidden culture scene

I'm busy preparing for a trip next week ... more to come on that soon (what a tease!), but jumped at the offer of a guest post from Lela on one of my favourite cities, Berlin. So, without further ado, here's a bunch MORE stuff to do in Berlin, nearly all of which I haven't seen before. It's the … [Read more...]

Moving 14,000km from Germany to Australia

Removalists off to load up our container in Heilbronn I'm normally good on anniversaries but it was my husband who realised that today is exactly five years since we landed in Australia. I was returning after living overseas for about five and half years, and he was bravely arriving for the … [Read more...]

Nothing bad about Bad Wimpfen

Summer views over Bad WimpfenI'm a big fan of non-famous places. (Okay, I don't mind New York or Paris either, but if I had to choose from one type or the other ... give me the unknowns.) The town I lived in while working in German, Heilbronn, is pretty low on the fame factor itself, so if you head … [Read more...]