samedi 8 octobre 2011

German Life

So this is a more serious entry. Here is the story of my integration into German life.  When I arrived here, there were 2 main things that I had to do. 1) Find a place to live and 2) Find a job. After being in Germany for about 2 months, I can tell you all that this has been accomplished.

1)    The flat. I wanted to find furnished accommodation that was not too expensive. There is a website here that lists available rooms in Germany in a shared apartment. I spent almost 4-5 hours a day on this website for about 5 days looking and sending messages and calling people to visit the different places. Most of the time, you get no answer back, some e-mails saying that the room is already taken or they have offers…. I was nervous of not finding a place to stay in September because of the Oktoberfest. If I didn’t find a place in time, I would have nowhere to stay as all hotels and hostels are booked months in advance for Oktoberfest. One morning I called a girl who had put up an ad a few minutes before. I went to visit the room and she told me I could have it J.   Relief! It was only available one month, but at least I would not be homeless. Afterwards, I visited another flat that was available in September, but the girl said it was ok if I moved in in October. So I now have my place for the rest of my time in Germany. I only need to move on Friday, but I think I found people to help me out.

2)    The job. I was told it could take about a month or 2 to find a job in my field in Germany. I started sending out CVs to different companies from the ads online and on the websites of the companies. I was trying to think of places where I could work to start making money as soon as possible (restaurants, language schools, etc). Then one day I was on toytown website and I saw a discussion group for babysitting job offers. I wrote an ad saying that I was new here and looking for work. It’s crazy how many responses I got. I am still getting some now, after about a month. I was able to get 3 part time jobs from that. I had to start refusing some people cause if not, I could probably be babysitting about 50 hours a week, If not more. Also, one day, I went to a friend or a friends house for brunch and they had another couple over that have kids and were looking for a babysitter for 3 days a week. It was for their daughter and, if I wanted, the son of one of her friends). That’s not a problem for me, so I therefore got that job as well, watching two 2 and a half year olds. My week is therefore filled with 4 babysitting jobs now. Plus the occasional evening with other families.

But I don’t want to be babysitting the whole time I am here. On the day I had found my flat for September, I was so happy to have found something that I decided to have a drink at the hostel bar. The guy sitting next to me started talking to me and I was telling him that I recently moved to Munich and was looking for a job and all. He told me that he had friends that worked for accounting firms here and to send him my CV and he would forward it along. Any help is welcome so the next day I sent it to him. His girlfriend works at KPMG and gave my CV to her boss. I then got an interview with them.

I have to say thanks to everyone who helped me out in my process of finding work and how the people I met helped me settle in Munich so well.
To Alex, who introduced me to Tilman and helped me find my first job babysitting.
To Bianca who rented me her room, which made me go to the bar.
To Gavin, who I met at the bar, and gave my CV to his girlfriend that got me a job.