When I was a little girl, my grandfather called me Trina. He didn’t like the name my parents gave me and would have prefered a traditional North German name. I hated the name ‘Trina’. It seemed to represent everything I didn’t want in my life: homeliness, tradition and boredom. I wanted to have an exciting life, I wanted to see all the big capitols in this world, travel around, meet interesting people and, if possible, settle somewhere far away from home like New Zealand, Australia or South Africa.
The place I was born and raised in, Lüneburg, is nowadays a lively and interesting university town, full of architectural treasures. In the 60ies and 70ies when I grew up it was much smaller and more quiet. Everybody knew everybody else, at least by sight, or so it seemed to me. As soon as I finished school I found a place as an Au-pair near Washington DC. I loved it. I visited New York, and Baltimore and the East Coast of the US and found it fascinating and inspiring. However, I didn’t want to spend my life as an Au-pair, so I returned to Germany to study social sciences. At that time one couldn’t choose one’s university but was placed by a regulating chamber (ZVS – Zentrale Studienplatz Vergabestelle). I ended up in Bamberg, a town only slightly bigger than the one I came from.
As soon as I finished university I moved to Hamburg. Finally I had arrived in a big city. By then I was married and not soon after moving to Hamburg my sons were born. My husband and I decided to settle in Hamburg and we found a nice apartment in one of the livelier quarters, with old Jugendstil buildings, small shops, bars and restaurants, where people of all ages and with all sorts of backgrounds mixed. We agreed that we would travel as much as possible as soon as the boys had grown up.
Life didn’t turn out as planned, my husband and I split, and after living happily in Hamburg for almost fifteen years I decided to move to the countryside with my new partner.
The first years in the countryside were busy. There was a house and a big garden to look after, the boys needed me as chauffeur and due to commuting every day I had much less time than before. Then the boys started to move away to go college. I turned 50 and slid into a kind of ‘midlife crisis’. I regretted having bought a house instead of spending the money on travelling and I began to miss the diversity and liveliness of the big city, Because of personal circumstances moving back to Hamburg was out of the question and I grew more and more discontented and frustrated.
After being unhappy for a few years I decided to stop complaining and to start looking at all the good things in my life, instead of moaning after the things I felt I missed out on. I started to take a closer look at the places and people around me and found a lot of unexpected and interesting things. Slowly I began to realise, that an interesting and fulfilling life does not depend on the place you live in, but on what you make out of it. Wherever you live, it is possible to find inspiring and interesting people, places and events.
Of course I would still like to see the world. I am dreaming about travelling to Hong Kong, Sydney and Tokio. To Canada and South Africa. And who knows, maybe one day I will be able to see all these places.
In the meantime I am living in North Germany and I have decided to explore the area I live in and the area I come from and to get involved in the life and community around me.
I have just started out on this journey and I would like to share my experiences with you.
I will show you places I visit and I will tell you about everyday life here in North Germany.
My articles reflect my personal views and feelings, some things I write about might be trivial and superficial, but I hope I will give you an insight into (North ) German life and the things tourists usually don’t see.