My first blog interview – Yeah!

I am a lucky lady.

In the last two weeks alone, I have been approached to do a blog interview and a guest post. The interview came from an organisation called InterNations. InterNations is an international online community for people who live and work abroad and of course, as an expat and as The British Berliner, this organisation is geared towards people like me.

Me! What a thrill!

I am so pleased that even in this very short time of blogging history, my blogging peers are reading my stuff and finding the way I write, of interest.

Thank you so much everybody! It is so fantastic to be recognised even in the tiniest way.

There is so much going on right now!

Next week I’ll be talking about the beautiful city of Cologne in Germany, but for now, I leave you with this interview piece from InterNations. Enjoy!

Victoria: The British Berliner

Victoria: The British Berliner       

In our InterNations Recommended Blog section we let you take the spotlight! Expat life in general is, of course, a perfect breeding ground for great, user-generated reads, and life in Berlin makes no exception. Take your time and browse the great blogs showcased in this article!

Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Who you are, where you come from, when you moved to Berlin, etc.

I’m a British girl from Manchester in the UK, living in Berlin with my German husband and our half British – half German son. I’ve been living in Berlin for yonks!

When and why did you decide to start blogging about your experiences?

I only started blogging in October, 2013 and because a few American scout mothers asked me where they could go skiing in Eastern Europe. I thought that if I wrote it down in a blog, they could all see it in one place!

Do you have any favorite blog entries of yours?

Sure I do: The one in which I write about the virtues of being an expat in Berlin and the other in which I write about things to do in Edinburgh.

Tell us about the ways your new life in Berlin differs from that back home. Did you have trouble getting used to the new circumstances? Did you experience culture shock?

Berliners live pretty much outdoor. I love the alfresco lifestyle, the beaches, the lakes and the forests as I like river-side living and the fact that you can live enormously well on relatively little. The culture shock I had was with all the recycling, the short working hours, and the fact that “going out” really starts at 02:00! I also remember living in Kreuzberg when I first came and we had to carry coal up three flights of steps, we didn’t have a sink, the bath tub was used as an interior decoration and you actually had to walk through my bedroom in order to get to the living room. So everyone did! On the other hand, my share of the rent was something like €18.00 per week!

Do you think you were fully prepared for what awaited you in Berlin? If you could, would you change some decisions/preparations you made?

Yes and No! I’d been flirting between England and Germany for a couple of years before I decided to make the move so I thought I knew Berlin but really, you can only know Berlin when you truly live in Berlin and just let go! I used to have insomnia and worried a lot about missing trains and doing things the right way but you know, I had to learn that public transport in Germany is pretty efficient and there would be another train in just a few minutes. Honest! Would I change some decisions? I wish I had been here sooner when, the Berlin Wall fell. That was real history in the making.

Every expat knows that expat life comes with some hilarious anecdotes and funny experiences. Care to share one with us?

My family and I participated in the Christopher Street Day Parade a couple of years ago and we were even on the truck. It was a great day full of dancing, posing for photos and generally having a very good time. At the end of the day, we were exhausted, my make-up was smeared, my hair in disarray and my high-heeled feet were killing me, so I took off my shoes and walked in barefoot to the first place that I saw – The Adlon Kempinski Hotel – they were great and didn’t even blink.

Which three tips would you like to give future expats before they embark on their new life in Berlin?

  • Learn German: It really does help as Berliners are too shy to speak English, so a few words help to break the ice and gain respect from the locals.
  • Try to be as organised as you can with documentation as Germans are sticklers for paper trails. Keep all documents as you don’t want to be caught out when they ask you for something that you had 10 years ago!
  • Take advantage of everything the city has to offer: education, sport, leisure, art and culture. It’s all here so no need to stay at home worrying if you’ll be bored or about the cost. You won’t be. Berlin is a city full of life and passion and many things are at little or no cost.

How is the expat community in Berlin? Did you have a hard time finding like-minded people or fellow expats?

The expats are great and are a growing number. Everyone is really nice and it’s very easy to make friends as there are various hangouts. Expats also tend to support each other whilst trying to find either their niche or their career. However, don’t forget to make friends with our German hosts. They want to know all about us!

How would you summarize your expat life in Berlin in a single, catchy sentence?

In Berlin, we’re a member of the best-of-the-best: young, attractive, intelligent, ambitious, and creative people.

Have you been interviewed? Have you done a Guest Post? Are you an Expat? Spill the beans!

Have your say!

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17 Comments on “My first blog interview – Yeah!

    • Many thanks @threetogo. I’m really looking forward to guest posting! It was also really lovely doing the expat interview as there have been so many adventures that it was difficult just picking a few! 🙂

    • Thanks very much Anna. I just read your interview too. It was really funny! I went to one of the InterNations events last year and they have asked me to write a post which I will do very soon! The event was really cool but I thought it was a casual affair and was sooooo under-dressed. Everybody was in their finery and I had to flash my wedding ring a few times as I kept getting hit on!
      I’ll be dressed up next time and going with a male expat who’s single LOL! 🙂

      • Tell me about it Anna! In Berlin, I’m normally the dressy one and even though I looked “alright” and was in a work suit and boots, my personal style is much sharper and brighter and as such, I really wasn’t prepared!

        You should have seen some of those heels the girls were sporting LOL!

      • Come, I live in Moscow, I can imagine 🙂 In the US I was always the most overdressed person anywhere (even NYC). but here after my best efforts I am a slob compared to red-carper-worthy appearances!

      • Except here I have one big obstacle: WINTER. My first one here I literally rotated 2 pairs of pants and 3 sweaters and 1 pair of boots (the only items warm enough) for 6 months straight. Then spring came and I whipped out all my skirts and dresses (probably ~100 combined) and my coworkers were like…wow…you have clothes? you…dress well?!

      • Nooooooo! Absolutely not! I’m well too trained and British for that. Winter or not, come snow or hail. I’ve got my lovely dresses and by god, I’m gonna wear them. 😉

        My students think I’m the crazy English girl that wears summer clothes in the snow. Today, I’m wearing a peach-green summer number, and a summer jacket that is pink on the outside and polka-dotted on the inside and it’s 5°C!

      • My first winter here I thought I was dying in -5C. By my 3rd one I thought -20C was balmy!

      • That’s what being an expat does to you. Before I came to live in Germany, I wouldn’t dream of having cheese for breakfast, now I do. With mustard. And ham. And salami. And stuff!

  1. Pingback: How I went to 10 incredible countries, and climbed a volcano in 2014. If I can do it, so can you! | The British Berliner

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