Ready for the Island

(Reif für die Insel)

Soon it will be time for another adventure. I did not plane it, but surprisingly I have got a new job. Think about it: A new job at the age of 63! There are still companies which employ experienced people. When I opened my profile at the “Agentur für Arbeit – Jobbörse” (Authority of Employment) for global employment, I suddenly have got some job offers. They were from Malta, Portugal, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland as well as from a German employer, looking for employees to work abroad. That means: There are still companies, which do not ask how old you are, they only ask which qualities you have. These should be examples for German and Swedish employers as well as for uncle Sam in both of the last-named countries.

Though I will move again! I will move to a real island again, but this time I will live on an island in the sun, an island which has half of the size of the city of Hamburg (Germany) or around the same size as the city of Vienna (Austria). I will move to an island which has never heard of the “Pirate Party”. The inhabitants only know real pirates and do not like them, but like to dress as pirates during carnival. Will I long for the Pirate Party? I do not think so! For the first I will concentrate on my new job, for the second I will explore my new homeland and I hope I will feel home there after a short while. One thing I am sure about: I will miss all my friends from the German Pirate Party. Anyway there are still som weeks before I move, exactly there will be three month. During these days, weeks and month I have a lot to prepare and a lot of visits to do. I will visit my children and my grand child in Sweden as well as I will visit my relatives and friends in Germany. I will say good-bye for a while, but not forever and I will welcome all of you on my new destination.

20140207

  • Yesterday I finally have visited the St. Pauli Theater. I planned to go there for years, but I have never done it before.
  • At the beginning of the week I started to check my documents and threw away a lot of them, but I have not finished yet.
  • Meanwhile I also have been at a couple of doctors, something I postponed since last autumn.
  • Today I email my children for my Swedish and English books and other minor things like a toaster and an iron. I asked them if they are interested in to get them.
  • Furthermore I offer my German and Danish books by “twitter”


20140209

  • I sort my books
  • I start to scan my important documents, because I cannot take all the heavy papers with me.


20140219

  • I scan my documents from the “Deutsche Rentenversicherung” – the documents belonging to my pension.
  • I am visiting the pub “Silbersack”, St. Pauli, together with a couch surfing friend.
  • Today I also place ads for my bicycle and the belonging equipment (smalltalk@piraten, my blog and “eBay Kleinanzeigen”)
  • I was at the dentist earlier this day – but have to go there one more time 😦


20140222

  • I sell my bicycle and the belonging equipment
  • Tonight at the “Hamburger Staatsoper”, I have not been here before, either!


20120223

Today I am on the island, on Malta. The anticipation made me to take photographs out of the plane, especially because the air was very transparent. Unfortunately we have a turbulence, which shakes the wings very hard, but the captain has brought the plane safely to the destination. He was really good, because he did manage to take land without I could feel that the wheels did touch the runway. The airport is squat, the food court already full – anyway the tourist season has not started yet. On my way to the busses I buy a 7-days-bus-ticket for the island of Malta. It costs only 6,50 EUR. In Hamburg a day ticket is for between 5 and 6 EUR.

The sky is cloudy and the clouds are dark grey, but it takes only some minutes and the sky is as blue as in a fairy tale. I take some photographs from the airport and the surroundings and my adventure in this part of the Mediterranean world can begin.

I have got directions of my host in Melliah. He told me to take the bus X1, but I have some time to spend before meeting him and his girl friend and the bus X1 will not go for a while. Therefore I take the bus X5 to Valletta. I leave at the last stop. Malta is still a mainly catholic country and the most of the shops are still closed on Sundays. There are even less restaurants open that day of the week, especially off the touristic season. I find a restaurant close to the bus stop and I am entering, but when I opened the door the first time, I closed it as soon as I have seen the tables with the white clothes. Anyway I decide to take one more look at the restaurant and the menu and enter the restaurant anyway. The most of the tables only have plates for two guests, even they are big enough for four. I eat a pasta, which is delicious. It actually is only a starter, but I eat it as a main course and the waiter treat me very well.

Out of the restaurant again I see an interesting spring water and would like to take a photograph of it. I am looking for the best position to do that because the sun and by this way I see, that I am at a bus terminal with lot of stops and buses. I find two routes for Melliah and take the earliest one. I ask the driver for calling “my” bus stop and he promise. It is a long ride from Valletta to Melliah and I already see a big part of the island of Malta. At the first beginning it seems like there are only cities and villages, that means lot of buildings, on the island, but by this bus I also see a part of the country site and it is green. Green are also the cacti and succulents. I have seen this kind of plants in my parents home on the windowsill. They were very small, but here in nature they are very big and tall – much more than a men’s high. I am not used to the constant jolting of the bus and I have problems to hold me. My host is not little surprised when I am arriving by the bus 42. I have to tell him the reason for it.

Steven and Heather are really nice and they tell me a lot about the island and also answer my questions. We plane for the following day and Heather invite me for a lasagne-dinner. It has been a wonderful day and I am looking forward to tomorrow.


20140224

After a cold night the sun arise and I am getting wonderful warm by it. Today I should look for two apartments and I have an appointment with my new employer for signing my contract. When meeting my new HR-assistant and also my new manager, they offer me the German “Du” at the same time and I am happy about it, because I was for so many years living in countries where there are no difference between “you” and “You” and also during my last years in Germany I was happy to use the German “Du” with my colleagues, therefore it would have felt strange to use the German “Sie”. At my employer I also get confirmed that one of the two apartments, I will check, is too far away from my new working place, therefore I get in touch with the owner of  the apartment and tell her, that I will not come and see the apartment. I will not rent it anyway and she understands. For the other apartment the owner cancel our appointment, he cannot leave his job. He is a private owner and has the apartments only as a secondary income.

20140225

This day I make by my own. My host has other things to do. I explore the island, especially the city of Sliema. I discover the free WiFi and a little shop, where I can buy fresh salads and rolls. All is very close to the ferry stop for Sliema.

20140226

It is already time to go back to Hamburg, but before I buy a pair of inexpensive shoes. At the check in point at the airport the clerk discover that I am not in the roll for today. I booked the ticket for the wrong day! I did not book for the 26th February but the 26th of March. That could only happen because February has only 28 days and the 26th in both month is on the same day of the week. I have to re-book my flight. A ticket for the same day would by very expensive – there are only seats in the business class left. I decide to take a flight some days later, the change of the ticket is still for nearly 100 EUR.

This night I am in the Hibernia hostel in Sliema, but i send an “Emergency Couch Request” by the couch surfing site. I do not ask my host in Melliah for further nights, because when we were talking about couch surfing they told me, that they only take couch surfers once a month and only up to three nights. The hostel is OK, breakfast is included and all is for only 11 EUR, because it is off-peak season. I meet an unusual woman in the bedroom, because she declared I should take another room than the staff dit tell me because she will have that room for her own and she also tells me which toilet I not have to use, because she will use that.

20140227

This day is a present for me. I try to find an apartment, but without success. I am going to Valletta to see more of it. It is the capital city of Malta and a world heritage site and I just have to go there. I also have got a new host. He is traveling for the moment, but he advises his friends, that they let me in, so I can use his room. I also get a key for the few nights I will sleep there.

20140228

I have not given up in trying to find an apartment, but I am going to Mġarr and Għajn Tuffieħa to see more of the island and the coast. It is a beautiful day and I am on the beach for a while, but it is still too cold for bare feet or to take a swim. Anyway I am happy about the flowers in bloom one can see on the whole island (there are Tagetes and Geraniums, too) – actually it is still February. In the early afternoon I am looking for apartments by visiting some Real Estate Agents. All are telling me I have to come in the beginning of May, because it is the time I need the apartment. The will not make a contract for the future. The only possibility would be to make a contract now and pay for the month of March and April, too, but that is not possible for me.

20140301

Today I do not look for an apartment. I am going to Valletta and meet King Carnival, the music groups, the dancers and the floats. Unfortunately the battery of my camera has to be charged, but I am happy because I still have my tablet and I can make good photographs with it, too, but it has to be nice weather and things has not to move.

I am going to the airport at night and I am waiting there in a night open coffee shop for my check in. Here also is free WiFi and I am playing Mahong by the Internet, check my emails from time to time and also use twitter.

20140302

Finally I can check in. It is 4:15 in the morning. I choose a window seat. I am surprised, because my seat is in business class and all my row is empty – without me of course. I am very tired, I try to sit upright and be awake, but I fall asleep. The seat is very comfortable, by the way.

When I am coming home, I have a lot of letters in my letter box. One of the letters is an invitation to the Authority of Employment (Agentur für Arbeit). I should meet up with them to avoid getting social contribution, called Hartz IV in Germany. Before I was going to Malta I had to ask for vacation leave for signing my contract, so it is well-known at this authority, that I will be employed again. I found, the system is not working, because I should not have got this letter.

20140303

  • I am at the Authority of Employment and left my notice of termination from the Alg I-scheme,
  • I am at a special doctor’s and checked my kidneys one more time – no changes, that means: All OK.
  • It is the last time that I am visiting an informal meeting for the BzV Hamburg-Mitte of the PIRATE-Party.


20140306

  • I meet my dermatologist for the screening of my body, but I have to go there one more time – for another investigation.
  • I also meet my orthopedist for a receipt for a new pair of shoe inlays because my heel spur.


20140307

  • I leave the election recommendations of the PIRATE-Party of Hamburg-Mitte at the “Wahlamt des Bezirks Hamburg-Mitte” (the authority for the election).
  • I make a list of my furniture and other belongings to sell before I move and post it at smalltak@piratenpartei-hamburg.de.


20140309

  • It is the last time I am the leader of an election at the PIRATE-Party.


20140310

  • I say good-bye to my last couch surfer in Hamburg.
  • I meet an ophthalmologist, but have to go there one more time for another investigation.


20140311

Wonderful, I have got a ticket for an event at the Laeiszhalle (a music hall) in Hamburg. I am very happy about it and now I am also able to tick it. It is a great event with the Ukulele Orchestra from Great Britain. Only the Ohnsorgtheater is left before leaving Hamburg.

20140312

  • Commerzbank OK
  • Tax Authority OK
  • The concert is fantastic.


20140313

  • I pick up the new shoe inlays.
  • The first interested people in the apartment are here.


20140317

  • The last time at the “Seniorenbeirat” (a kind of senior council)
  • Last meeting with the PIRATE-Party (BzV Hamburg-Mitte)


20140318 – 20140322

  • My eldest brother visits me and tries to help me with my laptop, unfortunately the whole thing become worse. Anyway I am happy about he tried to help me and it is nice to meet him, too.


20140319

  • Visiting the last “Stadtplanungsausschuss” (a “town planning committee”)


20140320

  • Last visit at the dentist – I proposed to him to open his office on Malta 😉


20140322 – 20140324

  • I visit a friend of mine in Kassel-Ihringshausen – I am already longing for her again!


20140325

  • Last time at a special doctor for neck, nose and ears.


20140326

  • Last time at the Fahrgastbeirat des HVV (passenger advisory board for the public transport in Hamburg) – I get two bottles of wine as a thank you.
  • I successfully reinstall the OS Linux on my laptop – I have to look for a Boot CD for this system!


20140327

  • Finally I advertise my belongings on “eBay Kleinanzeigen” – first success.
  • I buy a Global-Interrail-Ticket for 22 days with 10 travel-days – valid from 16.04.2014, because it is only valid outside Germany.
  • My last Thursday at “Fraktionsgeschäftsstelle der PIRATEN in der Bezirksversammlung Hamburg-Mitte” – our office.


20140328

  • Joining the “Bezirkswahlausschuss” (District Election Committee) as an ombudsman for the PIRATE-Party, BzV Hamburg-Mitte
  • One more time at the dermatologist (Surgery investigation of my “Lichen”)
  • Last meeting of the “PIRATE-fraction of Hamburg-Mitte.


20140329

  • The big “party” for selling most of the belongings of my home – I have got enough with money for the purchase of my Interrail-ticket, even I hoped to get more.
  • Last visit – almost for a long time – at Kerstin and Sven in Hamburg-Bergedorf
  • A friend offers me to stay over at his home, but there is still no need for that, even I have no bed anymore, I still have my couch.


20140330 – 20140402

  • The sale of my belongings continues – it is an unpleasent feeling to sleep between the rests of a home, but I hope, I can sell the rest, too.
  • I buy a Handy-Ticket for Dresden, Germany and also finally found a host there.
  • I am in contact with the following tenant and I am happy, because he takes it all: The equipment of the bathroom, the extractor of the kitchen and the left furniture from the combined living room/bedroom. I sell it for a very cheap price to him becaue it would be more complicated to take all out and it also would costs money to dispose it.


20140403 – 20140407

  • Visiting Sweden
  • Visiting my children Daniel and Maria and stored books and other small things at my sons’ home
  • Visiting my son Samuel and family, attended the big one-years-party of my grand child Leon.
  • Visiting my son Marcus in his new apartment.


20140408

  • I empty and clean my apartment after I did give away a lot of home appliances excluding furnitures to the “Stadtreinigung – STILBRUCH (a second-hand shop of the garbage authority)
  • I dispose som utensils like cleaning brushes and other small things in the container on our yard
  • I place some boxes with the rest of my belongings – the things I will take to Malta – at a friend’s home.


20140409

  • I clean my apartment, the last inspection of my apartment took place without any complaints.
  • A neighbor knocks at my door and took farewell
  • I take my suitcases and things I will leave to a friend and try to go to the closets bus stop, but I feel that all is too heavy to take by my own for public transport. Therefore I try to find a taxi, but there is none in Finkenwerder and the others would take almost an hour for coming. Though I called a member of the Pirate-Party asking him if he will be so kind and help me with his car and he did. We get stuck with the car in the Elbe Tunnel (Elbtunnel). Therefore it takes more than two hours for us. Usually the distance will be done in half an hour.
  • I should have had a last check at a doctor’s, but have to cancel it because the traffic.
  • The Pirate-Party has a party for me combined with the spring reception of our fraction. It is nice and I say “Tschüss” to all of them, that is a Hamburg kind of good-bye and means “we will see again”.


20140410

  • I am on my trip to Malta (Read more here: Visit Malta)

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