Our Relocation (just 50 miles)
For those interested in a taste of what it is like to live in Germany, we wanted to share our relocation experiences. Also, a bit about our own journey!
We have a large balcony in our new apartment where you can look southeast, direct south or southwest. Each angle catches a glimpse of a different set of mountains, though no view is unobstructed. This is the southwestern view.
Go to the Mountains!
"Go to the mountains!" This was the message that Sappho received one morning about four years ago. So, we hopped the train from Munich and traveled 50 miles to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, which is nestled right in the middle of the mountains just a mile or two north of the Austrian border.
That day, we explored the Partnach Gorge, which was both enchanting and a bit challenging; walking along a narrow path and through very small tunnels cut into the mountain, and all the while the rushing waters coming down from the mountains along the Partnach River.
Emerging safely from the gorge, we hiked up the mountain to a meadow where we encountered a simple, peaceful life with farmers turning hay with rakes and dairy cows gently shaking their heads and ringing the bells around their necks as they munched on the sweet grasses and flowers of the alpine meadows. We had never experienced anything like it. We were filled with joy and with inspiration for our life.
The Alps is also the place where our Gurudev, Swami Rama of the Himalayas, had experienced a vision that changed his life. In Love Whispers he wrote, "Anyone who knew my life before could appreciate how the dividing line actually came here." The two insights we received that day were also a sort of dividing line for us.
First, we were asked to face and overcome our fears walking through the gorge and hiking up the mountain (this was the start of a longer process for Sappho related to fear and associated with astrological transits, which is now ending).
Second, there is a different way to live that we were meant to experience, explore and then integrate in our life.
We didn't know it then, but the message "Go to the mountains" was not simply about a nice day trip, but initiating us into a new chapter of life.
Time to Move
In early 2016, it crossed our mind that it was time to slow down the pace of our life and to have more time for contemplation and meditation. It was time to consider moving from Munich to the Alps. Since 2010, Munich had grown so much that it was now a bit overcrowded. A city sort of bursting at the seams!
When we couldn't find an apartment in Garmisch-Partenkirchen or in Bad Reichenhall, we considered that perhaps it was just simpler and more peaceful (aka safer) to stay put in Munich. We thought, "Moving is a hassle and it is expensive and has some uncertainty, so let's avoid the hassle and just stay in Munich." That word 'avoid' is key. Avoidance, in myth, is not appreciated by the Gods!
So, just as in a myth, "life" informed us that staying put would not be an option. Seemingly out of the blue, our landlord in Munich told us he was taking the apartment back for his son. Now, we had no choice. Not only did we have to move, but now we had a deadline!
We returned our focus to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, but none of the apartments were quite right. One had bad Feng Shui. Two others were nice but definitely too small for our office. Another was on a really noisy street. Finally, we found an apartment that was the right size, with great Feng Shui and was quiet and had a nice view of the Alps. This would be our new home. It was by no means perfect, but it had the potential to make a nice home.
We often get notes from people relocating to a location with great astrological energies, but where the search and process of moving is not particularly smooth. You are NOT alone! But, we are so happy we stuck it out and made the move!
On our spiritual journey, we have found that not all change is easy change. We are tested and often put through the most difficult situations. All the tests, difficulties and obstacles are meant to train and expand our consciousness.
A New Chapter of Life
There are two kinds of moves. One in which we change our address, maybe with a new job, but we basically live the same life we did before. The second type of move is "designed" to change your life. We found we were making the second type of a move and it had two impacts.
Externally, our new home would support the new chapter of life. The mountains, the connection to the nature and traditions of Bavaria, the slower pace of life would bring a less complicated and more intentional way of living.
Internally, we experienced unresolved karmic challenges, which in the process of moving were pushed front and center into our awareness. The message was, "If this is a new chapter of life, then don't bring your old junk along with you!"
If we wanted a more peaceful life, this would be the time to change old habits, unconscious habits that keep us perpetually busy, like a hamster running in circles on a wheel stuck in his cage. The blessing was that the challenges have led us to a wonderful new home and a new way of living.
The astrological locational energies do not change for either of us with this shift south of 50 miles.
During the move, Sappho and I were each experiencing transits of both Jupiter and Saturn. Transiting Jupiter is conjunct Moon for me and is sextile the Moon for Sappho. When (Professor) Jupiter makes a transit favorable for moving, it means that the outcome of the move will be favorable. But, it does not mean that it is not work and that there will not be frustrations and setbacks along the way.
Now, enter Professor Saturn! Transiting Saturn was moving through the last re-test of my second Saturn Return, while Sappho was experiencing transiting Saturn square Saturn. Transiting Saturn was testing aspects of our habits and reminding us that in order to live a more peaceful life, we needed to make the choices, moment to moment, that support that peaceful life.
In readings, I talk about how the three great questions, "what, where and when" work together:
- Saturn revealed the "what" and our unresolved karmic habits.
- Astrology of location identifies Bavaria, whether in Munich or Garmisch-Partenkirchen as "where" our journey will be supported.
- Transiting Jupiter and Saturn identify the "when", when will we move and embrace our new chapter of life and what karmic tests were meant to face at this time.
We are happy with our new home, nestled in the Bavarian Alps and with our new way of life. The destination was worth the journey!
The Apartment Chaos
Regarding our physical space via our apartment, it has not been a smooth transition.
We had 30 minutes to view the apartment and the real estate agent told us that everything would be fixed and not to worry. We knew the apartment was not perfect, but the layout was good and it seemed to have potential. He said you can move in September 1. We agreed.
Then, he went on vacation the very next day.
For our next contact with his colleague, we were asked to move in on August 1. We thought the plans of the current renter had changed and agreed. This was the first critical miscommunication (and probably an error on our part not to question it).
When we arrived, no repairs had been made and the house had not been thoroughly cleaned. It felt like a disaster and we questioned if we should just hand back the keys (something Sappho continued to feel for 3 weeks). This is not typical at all for Germany and we are still confused as to why this happened.
It was all a classic set of miscommunications and Mercury was not even retrograde (nor was it in the shadow)!
We thank you all for your patience as we withdrew and took the time we needed to gather our space and energy around us. As in the movie "Under A Tuscan Sun", we went through each room with love and have made it our own.
We worked with the landlord, who was very accommodating, and just last week the final things have been fixed.
That was surprise number one.
For surprise number two
, here is a picture of part of our kitchen. What seems to be missing?
The new kitchen without a kitchen look!
If your answer is that the kitchen is missing, you would be correct. This represents another miscommunication!
But first, a bit about life in Germany. In Germany, when you move into a new apartment, it will likely have just wires hanging from the ceiling where you would expect ceiling lights to be. Additionally, no rooms will have closets and you will wonder where you are going store anything or hang your clothes. And, the kitchen will be void of anything you would expect to see in a kitchen.
Germans want their own kitchen. So, they buy a complete kitchen and move it from apartment to apartment, even though that often means it does not quite fit right in your new apartment. Having said that, overall, German society has not been particular a mobile one until recent years. This is one German concept that we just can't wrap our minds around.
The prior renter was not a German either and had purchased for herself an IKEA kitchen. She agreed to leave it for us because she was not going to take it with her. It was definitely a kitchen we would not choose, but this way we had time to buy a kitchen. This was the second aspect that was not communicated between the two real estate agents. When we arrived, the kitchen had been removed (which is normal). All has been ordered and our new kitchen will arrive in late October.
Regarding closets, rooms have no closets. People buy large cabinets to store things in from clothing to cleaning products. We knew we needed to buy closets, but the kitchen we expected to be here.
We found an older closet made of oak from a farmer's home.
The hand-painted scenes on the front are expressive of the four seasons.
Perfect for both a farmer and astrologer.
Because we do not have a kitchen, we bought a lovely old buffet from a used furniture shop so that we could fill it with our kitchen items and relieve ourselves of some boxes.
Here is the buffet that is literally stuffed full of plates, pots, pans and utensils. The day it arrived (hoisted over the balcony) was such a relief as we unpacked 12 boxes into it! Also, see that small cabinet in the hallway? That is a shoe cabinet. The two wide drawers hold shoes upright in two stacks. A must have with no closets in all German homes!
The ceiling lights have just arrived from Amazon! More to come next time....
The Traveler's Well Astrology |