Life in the Bowl

It says this is the “comic book” filter, but I think it looks like a rash.

We live in a bowl. The hills around our village are so perfect and round, it’s like an ice cream scoop was used to carve out some space for humanity in the middle of rolling farmland and forests. It’s a bowl. And inside this bowl, there’s the church and all the farmhouses and fachwerk houses nestled together, creating a cozy, adorable community while cows and sheep graze on the outskirts.

It is a picturesque dream to live here.

It is a total nightmare for my internet habits.

Friends and family have noticed. The dip in my online activity has inspired a few notes and phone calls to make sure things are okay with Martin, me, and the kids. I promise, life in the bowl is GREAT. But also, life in the bowl is the reason my social media posts and blog updates have been limping along since the move.

Some of it IS a reconfiguration of my routine and my personal time, but most of it is simply a lack of access. Our Internet connection in the bowl sucks. When we *ARE* able to connect online,  we have to wait … and wait … and wait for pages to load. If the pages have any kind of video or movement? Forget about it. It’s like it’s 1996 all over again. And forget about getting a phone signal through these thick, cement walls of our beautiful house. I’ve become so accustomed to not being able to use my cell phone that I no longer carry it around with me on a regular basis.

The pencil sketch filter.


It’s been a blessing and a curse.

A blessing because being off the gird, and totally disconnected from the rest of the world is nice, and you know it.

A curse because being off the grid, and totally disconnected from the rest of the world isn’t nice, and you know it.

Martin and I had accepted that this was the way things were going to be here in Germany. As modern and advanced Germany is in many ways, there are still things about it that are so … 1996. We were just excited to have Internet at all in the bowl. But one day last week, the Internet was just.not.working at all. The girls really wanted to web chat with my sister and nieces in the United States, but the computer was just not having it.

So Martin called the telephone/cable/television company to ask about it, and that’s how we learned that we didn’t have to live like this. There are other options, even in the bowl, and beginning next month, we will be hooked up and hooked out.

I will be able to snap a photo and share it immediately without having to walk around my neighborhood to find a “spot” that gets a signal.

I will be able to clack away on my laptop, and post a blog post almost immediately.

And best of all, I’ll no longer be dependent on a temperamental connection! If I want to be off-the-grid, I can choose that. And when I want to share ridiculous selfies with the world, I can choose that, too!

I can’t hardly wait.

Alien filter. You’ve been missing this. I know it.