Sunday, November 28, 2010

One week and still homeless

Well, it's been one week since I have arrived in Berlin and I'm still staying at the hotel, no more in a nice single room (my company paid for it untill till Friday) but in mixed dorms...

So on Monday, my 1st work day was ok, I go to meet some collegues, I already have tons to do, but the texts can sometimes be funny. But it's hard to really get to know my collegues, I'm still having lunch alone, ans as I have no excuse to talk to them about job-relate dissue it's hard for me. But it should get better soon... I hope... at least the one around me and my bosses are cool.

I visited a few rooms this week end, hope this will work out before Wednesday, but there's so much people looking for rooms, now I'm widening my search and would go to up 1h ride to work (I can start between 9 & 11 am).

This afternoon I went to see one Christmas Market, but I guess it's more charming at night with lights... Later on, I went to visit the East Side Gallery, it's a part of the Wall dedicated to art, it's 1300 meters long, I did only a part of it since it was getting freezing cold and dark, will see the rest next week end.

Not much so far, my social life being around 0, it's getting harder & harder to eat alone at restaurant, but once I'll be  settled in a room that might change, there are always CouchSurfing meetings and I'll have to look for regular activities where I could meet people.

==Greetings from Berlin==

Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Zombie in Berlin...

...that's quite how I'm feeling just now. My train left Metz yesterday at 11:50pm and I arrived this morning in Berlin at 9:00 am. I had not much space, could hardly sleep, so I'm totally exhausted and have to wait till 3pm to check in, while waiting I'm at the hotel's bar, I mighht soon go out, have a walk, lunch and fresh air.
Around 5pm I'll be visiting a room to rent, guess I won't go too late to bed, hopefully tomorrow I'm starting at 11am.
I'm very happy to be here and do hope that I'll enjoy Berlin's life.

==Greetings from Berlin==

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Back home...

... but not for too long! Just coming back from Germany, I'll be taking a train back to Berlin on Saturday night and my new life as a Berliner will start on Sunday.

I really enjoyed this short stay in the German capital city, it is a very charming and interesting place. Yesterday, I took the free guided tour organized by New Europe. They are present in a few major European cities as well as in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. They offer theme paying tours and also a free tour of the city. This free tour is tip based only, and it was worth it! Our guide in Berlin was awesome, he had great stories to tell, it was really interesting and we learnt a  lot. We walked 4 hours without seeing time passing by. I highly recommend it to you, it is so enjoyable to learn about the city you're visiting!

==Greetings from Metz, France==

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


So, I had my job interview from noon to 1:00pm, and around 5pm I had received per mail an offer letter, I am starting next Monday! Plus they are paying for my train and first nights at hostel! I am so happy! Now, I also can say "Ich bin eine Berlinerin!"

==Greetings from Berlin==

Monday, November 15, 2010

Live from Berlin

So I made it to Berlin! I left home at 9:30 am and arrived at my host's home at 7pm something. It's already a long way but I made it still longer with my fear to run late. My flight was leaving at 4:20pm from Francfurt-Hahn, so gates closing at 3:50pm which is likely to be the time they actually open with Ryanair... I had a bus arriving at 3pm but I took the one arriving at 1:15pm, I got almost convinced on the way I made the right choice while we were in traffic jam in Luxemburgcity, but we were only 10 min late, when I have no checked bags I could come later.
But I killed time by having lunch at the airport restaurant (quite good indeed) and being polled about the airport.
The flight was ok, I slept like usual. Then going through Berlin with my hosts's directions was quite easy, and speaking German and having lived in Germany made me feel less lost than usual, when I go to unknown city in an unknwon country.
I'm hosted by Martin, a CouchSurfer whom I hosted around 3 years ago in Nancy. He's currently working, so I'm waiting from him, his neighbour let me in, but no wild party tonight since I got this job interview tomorrow. Once this will be done, I'll go discover my maybe future city!!! ^^

==Greetings from Berlin==

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Heading to Berlin!!!

I just got an email from the HR Manager of the company in Berlin in which I am applying as translator. They are inviting me for a face-to-face interview next week!!!!!! I've just checked with Ryanair, from Francfurt-Hahn, there are flights every day from Monday to Saturday, twice a day in week time.
Now, I'm just waiting to know the exact day to book flight and hotel.
I do hope this small trip will be worth it!!!

==Greetings from Metz, France==

Monday, November 8, 2010

Berlin, 1st round

I've just had my phone interview with Berlin. We talked about 20 min, talking about my languages choices, my experiences, and something I hate: my disavantages!
But  I now know more about the position, translation & testing, nice wage, for 3 to 6 months.
She'll get back to me within 3 days and if it's ok, they'll invite me for a face-to-face interview.

==Greetings from Metz, France==

Saturday, November 6, 2010

So stupid!

Yesterday, I was supposed to have a phone interview with the Berlin's company. It was scheduled at 4:00pm. During half an hour, I kept my mobile phone just next to me, not daring going anywhere... at 4:25 I went to my pc to send them an email, the HR manager had sent me a mail a few minutes before, saying that she could not reach me, asking me if I was still interested in the position.
I first supposed there was a problem with my mobile and gave her my landline number. A few seconds after, I thought maybe I made  a mistake in my phone number on my CV... I found the mail I had sent, had a look at my application mail: it was my Irish phone number! Then I saw that my application was sent on Sept 30th! Ooooops! I was still in Ireland, so they were trying to call me on a number I'm not using anymore! I was then feeling very stupid!
I explained her the problem, she rescheduled the interview on Monday morning! I'm really angry at myself! How could I be so stupid?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A week end in Strasburg

The Cathedral
This week end was a long one, with Monday blank holiday, well for me it didn't change anything since I'm currently unemployed but I decided to leave to Strasburg with a friend. We wanted to go somewhere, quite close, in France since she had not yet all the ID documents of her new car, so on Friday evening, on the phone and on internet we made our choice. I had been to Strasburg quite a few times, but never more than one single day. It is located in the North East of France, very close to Germany: you just have to cross a bridge (by car, bus or foot) to get to Kehl, Germany. Strasburg is also widely known for the Cathedral, the "Petite France" (meaning "Small France") district and the European Institutions.

@ Chocolate Museum
So we left, on Saturday late morning, we drove around 2-3h, including lunch stop and time to get lost on our way to the hotel, her GPS not knowing the hotel's street. Our first thing after settling in the hotel was the visit of the Chocolate Museum which was located just nearby. It was a bit expensive, €8 (but at the hotel they gave us a €2 discount voucher) but quite interesting. It's all starting with a small movie about the chocolate's history, told by a male voice, almost sensual! ^^ Then, a small exhibition, some nice phrases about chocolate and it's ending on a workshop. The hostess is explaining and demonstrating how to make a casting and then we got to taste chocolate at different stages of production, from crushed bean to dark chocolate. And of course after the gift shop, with everything around chocolate. But you get a little chocolate gift.

Place Kléber by night
After, we went to the city center, did a few shopping in the old town, went to see the wonderful cathedral. It was already night, and the lightning of the monument was really nice. Then, we met some friends of my friend and went to restaurant. It was an Italian restaurant, Papa Lisa, it was very nice, nice food, got a pizza with Parma ham, mozza and gorgonzola, quite big and very cheap.
Then, with my friend we headed to our hotel to get changed. We then met in the old city some people, there's a website called OVS (Urbizz in English), people organize events (clubbing, restaurant, walks, exibition, whatever,...) and other people can join, not knowing each other, very nice concept. So, before leaving we  went on the website and spotted a night in club, so we decided to join. The club, Le Seven, seemed quite nice at first. But, the DJ didn't play the songs in their whole, got from one style to another completely different, and it was over crowded, they kept on letting people in whereas we could barely move inside. But the people we were  with were very nice, we all in all had a great night.

Our Alsacian lunch
On Sunday, we went first to the city centre late morning, had a nice walk. We stopped in a great restaurant, Le Caquelon, it was very nice inside. We had some typical Alsacian food: one was a "Croûte au fromage à l'alsacienne", it was bread soaked in white wine with bacon and lots of melted Munster (very strong smelly cheese, delicious, specialty from this part of France) and the other a "Poêlée de roësti Campagnarde", minced potatoes with onions, chopped bacon, egg, cheese and ham. It was delicious, the Munster was very strong, just as I like it, but too strong for my friend. And plus it was cheap! ^^
After lunch, we kept on walking, along the canal to the "Petite France" district, it's among different canals, very cute, with typical alsacian houses, so lovely.

Petite France
Later on, we went to another OVS event: Bowling and Flammekueche. I suck so much at bowling but it was very nice, lots of fun, the locals were teasing us, calling us "The Strangers", since people from Alsace have the reputation to be quite chauvinistic. Of course, I lost! Then, we went to restaurant to eat flammekueche. When the first one arrived, I wanted to use fork and knife since we were in restaurant, but no way! I got yelled at! That's a crime to eat it with cuttlery, gotta use your hands. They were very good. After that, we went in a bar/club and had a very nice night out.

On Monday, we went for lunch at my friends' friends, had a nice time, before getting back home. We had a very nice time there, met some nice people, and weems they expect us to come back, which we will of course! Plus, it's a very nice city, might try to see more of it next time, like European Parliament and Commission.

Some more photos.

==Greetings from Metz, France==

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Today, i took the theoretical exam of the driving licence and I passed! ^^ So now, the fun can start! I had tried to get my licence around 8 years ago, I passed the theory within less than 2 months, then I took around 50 driving lessons and I was far to be ready to take the practice exam.
But now, I'm more motivated & mature, and I do need it!

Well, that is if I don't leave to Berlin. Lately, I've applied to lots of Video Games Companies, and I just got an email from a German company, they're interested in my CV and asked me to complete a translation and answer a few questions. Depending on how good will be my test, they might schedule a phone or on-site interview! :D

==Greetings from Metz, France==