We’re two days and nights in and it’s undoubtedly been easier for us than it has for K. His journey was fine, the hotel is fine, he is fine. But, he’s struggled massively with the language barrier and had a pretty crappy first day. The only upside of the whole day was that he was not invited to anyone’s house for dinner. He had a lovely meal in the hotel (feeling a bit Billy No-Mates but better that than the scenario we had imagined with Helga) and was presented with a complimentary starter which pleased him no end – he likes a freebie. As this meal was the only food he had all day I am sure it was all the more enjoyable (picked up too early for breakfast in the hotel and no sign of anyone having lunch so he was starving by dinner!).
Today has been a better day, as he has spent it with someone with good English skills (no reason why they should defer to us in this way, but K had expected that as his bosses had arranged this they would have established if he would be able to communicate, as he has zero German skills) and he has managed to get answers to questions and compare their way of working to the UK setup. He has just FaceTimed us and seems much more upbeat and positive about the whole trip.
As he was going to be en route while Line of Duty was being aired on Sunday night, I had set him up with iPlayer on his iPad so he could watch it on catch up. What I hadn’t factored in was that the iPad would know it wasn’t in the UK (how? it’s all too technical for me) and iPlayer wouldn’t, well, play. T came to the rescue and talked him through downloading a bit of software that would trick the iPad into thinking it was on home turf and he was able to watch. Thank god, we can talk about Balaclava Man and he doesn’t have to avoid social media for the next 3 days.
As expected I haven’t slept well at all. I don’t sleep brilliantly when he is here and normally blame it on his snoring (not actual snoring, just annoying noises from his nose) but I have been far, far worse without him here. I doze a bit and dream weird dreams – last night I was queuing up at a supermarket checkout with my weekly shopping and remembered I needed rocket (?), left my shopping with a little old man to look after (?) and proceeded to wander for hours and hours around the supermarket looking for a bag of rocket, getting more and more hysterical. The night before, I was trying to get through to the school absence line to report T having an orthodontic appointment and couldn’t get the number to work. I am literally the most boring dreamer in the world. It could be worse, I suppose – no-one wants nightmares and at least if I am dreaming I must be getting some sleep! And stuff I need to do is at the forefront of my mind the next morning meaning I am less likely to forget to do it. Not sure I needed any rocket but I have bought some today just in case there is a sudden shortage.
Three days to go. Nearly half way.