It’s pouring rain in Karlsruhe, but’s that’s ok, as today is our first pajamas-only Sunday super chill since our move, which was only five days ago.
Between April 1 and August 20, I lost my gig, we sold 2/3 of our possessions – nearly our entire kitchen and most of our clothes, a majority of our books and CDs, and all the sundry things that occupied every junk drawer in the house – moved in with friends, took a month-long sojourn from Boston to New Orleans and back, and then tied up every loose end imaginable. On August 20, we became those people at Logan’s international terminal who push two loaded luggage rollers, drag another two huge suitcases, and tug along a dog, moving glacially slow toward the not-too-happy-looking check-in agent. We tearfully sent Sammy off with a TSA agent, had a HUGE cocktail, and, with the assistance of Princess Ambien, took off for our new life in Germany.
The impetus of the trip was my wife winning a two-year contract to sing as a soloist with the ensemble at the Badisches Staatstheatre Karlsruhe. She’s been singing opera professionally for about 7 years, but this kind of opportunity – a salaried position where she remains part of the ensemble for an entire season, singing multiple shows in repertory – simply doesn’t exist in the States. Most opera work is free-lance contracts, which basically boils down to: 1) no benefits, and 2) you spend a lot of time on the road.
The K-ru gig came after a year of auditions, guest contracts, discussion via a series of extremely conditional hypotheticals (if we did this and could offer this for these potential roles, might you be interested in the possibility of the option of…) and a sluggish back-and-forth through my wife’s agent.
She signed in late March, I found out my job was ending on April 2nd. Thus commenced the Great Purge, Relocation and Road Trip of 2013.
Upon our arrival, we retrieved our bags from the carousel, found our dog at the over-sized luggage counter, piled everything into a rented station wagon and drove to our new apartment, where our lovely landlord greeted us with English, chocolate, and a box of dog treats:
Still working on the jet lag, we are taking our first Sunday in Germany realizing that we are living in Germany, and then putting that off to watch another episode of our new favorite TV obsession on Netflix. Work starts tomorrow (for me, at least).