teufelsberg berlin

PS I moved to Berlin

Though it’s been a minute since I last posted, I’ve still been updating my reading list and linking to my recent work. There’s been a reason for my radio silence: I moved to Berlin this spring! After nearly a decade in Cincinnati, I sold all my stuff, packed up my cat and crossed the Atlantic to build a new life in Germany.

My whole life had been leading up to this point, really. I lived in Germany before, as an exchange student in high school and again for a year of university; I loved the language and the people and the bread. But then I didn’t go back again for 13 years — side effects of being a broke student and then a broke journalist. When I went freelance, I started thinking about living abroad again, and I spent the last two summers in Germany, staying with my former host mom and testing the limits of the Schengen Agreement. When I returned to the US last August, I realized I needed to go back to Germany, but for real this time. I set a goal of being in Berlin for my 35th birthday in March, and reader, I did it.

Despite the stress that comes with moving abroad in a completely DIY manner, it was totally fine. I don’t know why I ever thought I couldn’t do it! A friend of mine who’s lived in Berlin for many years told me that the city will tell you if it wants you, and I think Berlin thinks I’m a keeper. Within the first months of the summer, I got a little apartment surprisingly much more quickly than anticipated, got a freelance work visa for two years, and got a freelance gig with Handelsblatt Global, the English edition of Germany’s leading financial newspaper.

Moving internationally is not for the weak of heart or for the easily frustrated, but it was exactly what I needed. Going home to Ohio for two weeks at Thanksgiving was great, but upon my return to Berlin I felt like I was home again. This city is weird and vibrant and frustrating and absolutely lovely, and I’m glad that it has me.


  1. travis sudweeks

    Hi Grace, thanks for your work and words! I’ve been trying to figure out how to move my small family and set up my pottery business in Europe somewhere. It seems an impossible task. I’ve been looking for the last few years. Do you have any suggestions?

  2. Miles Wofford

    Hello Grace, not sure how to proceed so I’ll just let it rip. I started working on Ancestry over a year ago and it just gets deeper and more wonderful all the time. My family found a box of my Grandmother’s a few months ago. A lot of pictures, 20 postcards and one letter all in German. They are mostly her mother’s, my Greatgrandmother (Ma) who I had the remarkable privilege of knowing. The postcards (In remarkably good condition) are all addressed to Fraulein Augusta and are before she married my Great-grandfather (Pa). They range in date from 1897-1906. The photo’s of her family range in date from 1897-1921. Ma and Pa came to America in 1913 from Lemgo, Germany.
    For the past couple of months, I’ve been scanning and digitizing it all. If you are interested in taking a look, I can send you the postcards and pictures via Google pics or any way you would like.
    My family and I are dying to know what treasures are locked away in these secret postcards (secret, only because they are in German! LOL)
    I hope to hear back from you!

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