The opportunity to contribute a column to The Jewish Daily Forward came up during my three-week summer interlude in Bozeman. I emerged from jet lag to the realization that my little home office was an excellent vantage point to reflect on all that I had embraced and struggled with over the past year. There was too much to squeeze into my 900 word allotment, but I packed in what I could. My overwhelming sense is that the past year’s mental and emotional journey took place in a parallel time span where a day equalled a week or even a month. I want to go back to Germany to continue this journey, but I am so relieved to hit the Pause button from my peaceful perch in the Rockies.
The Forward column is about how I have been able to tie together some of the loose strands of my identity while living in Germany. I sent the column in two weeks ago but have yet to be given a publication date. Perhaps they’ve changed their mind and I’ll pitch the column elsewhere or just post it here. I’ve begun to experience the frustrations of being a rookie journalist, but I will keep writing. And in a few days I will be back in Berlin, ready to experience life as an immigrant in a country that beckons and stimulates me, and helps me to uncover parts of who I am.
Here is a link to the essay I published online last month about the long road towards my German citizenship: http://jewishwritingproject.wordpress.com/2011/07/18/reclaiming-my-german-citizenship/. I tried to call the German Consulate in San Francisco yesterday to solicit their help in getting me through the final stage of the application process. I gave up after being put on hold and then getting disconnected twice. Maybe I will have better luck today.