I woke up after 7:00 p.m. to a pleasant evening after too little sleep to go back to the night shift. I showered, got dressed, and muttered a good morning to my husband when I entered the kitchen without any motivation. Only then did I notice that my husband was not there. Olaf and I only had a small apartment. So I went to the bedroom to check on him. He wasn’t there either. I put the kettle on to make a coffee and looked to see if he had put a note somewhere. No note. I looked in WhatsApp. No message from him. So I wrote to him. I poured my coffee, stirred it, added a third of milk. Shortly afterwards the news came from him. I went black from the shock. I sat on the floor and waited until the noise stopped in my head and I could see clearly again. I got up cautiously to take my coffee, waited for the vertigo to go away, and went to the sofa with the coffee. After I sat down, I reread the message.
„I’m in the hospital. I had a nervous breakdown. I’ve been psychologically at the end for weeks. I can’t stand to see you as you overwork. But I also can not support you. I love you so much that I tried to be the man you saw in me But I can’t do it. I would like to be more productive. But unfortunately I cannot live this life as your husband. I’m just a burden for you. And I can’t watch you break yourself I wish you could stop working so much. Despair at the difference between the man I want to be and the man I can be almost kills me. I first have to find myself again. I don’t know if there is a future for us. ”
The dizziness was gone. My circulation was slowly picking up again. I looked into the distance, out of the window into the darkness, and felt like nothing for ten minutes. My head was completely empty. Then I got sad. I swallowed the sadness immediately, got up and paced the room. I didn’t want to think about it. I didn’t want those feelings. I heard a deep cry in me, and talked myself well: count to ten! Count to ten! I counted. I took a deep breath. I went one step further in circles for each number. Arrived at ten, the scream grew dull. I became aware of where I was and what I had to do. I had to put on my shoes and jacket and drive off. I looked at the cell phone. 8 p.m. I sighed. I packed my stuff and left the house.
I started the engine of my little Skoda Fabia and first selected a different radio program. I didn’t feel like happy music. I chose Bavaria 4 classic. I breathed a sigh of relief. No operas. I can only listen to operas live, I don’t like radio. A wonderful piece by Bach was playing, Concerto No. 7 in G minor. With the drama of the music I drove out of the idyllic health resort in which we lived. We! I sighed and concentrated on the traffic. My darling was in the hospital! The music took me on a luxury rollercoaster ride. The tears were already running. He couldn’t see how I worked my way! The pianist tried to distract me and calm me down. My heart was racing with the capers of music. My darling couldn’t stand that he couldn’t do anything for me! I drove briefly to the right to blow my nose hard. The violins stroked my head encouragingly. The piano looked at me questioningly. I took a deep breath and drove on. When I got to the petrol station, I refueled for twenty euros as usual, bought a Red Bull, a Coke and a cold cappuccino. I started again. The music had arrived at a point where the melody was something of deep house. With wonderful bass. I wondered whether the music would not overwhelm me emotionally to drive another hundred kilometers to work. But I decided that this music was exactly what I needed in this situation. Obviously I was now mentally and physically awake enough to be able to look objectively at the situation.
Bach now accompanied me calmly and calmly. Quite objectively, my dear Mona, I said to myself inwardly. What do we have now? You are overworked, have no time for your relationship, your husband is unhappy, you are unhappy. Your children have been out of the house for years, and now 16 and 19 years old, they never will be small again and crawl on your lap for help. Be honest with yourself: do you think you will ever be happy with this life? When was the last time you were happy for a long time? Happy moments shot through my head as the piano and violins accelerated. Pictures of my dad and me hiking when I was a kid. Pictures of me and my children on summer days at the lake. Successful experiences in my training as a foreign language correspondent and in my studies. My first own car. Journeys through Hamburg, where I was traveling as a courier, got to know new corners of the city. My first vacation in Tenerife. Palm trees. Sun. Beach. Sea. The heat. The trips with the little rental car that smells of fabric softener. The tanned young man who spoke to me on the beach and waited patiently for my answer so i got my spanish book out and and answered him back, and then, with a laugh, reached for me to go for a walk. The freedom. The heat. The freedom. The heat. I reveled in dreams. Bach heralded the finale. I floated there until the applause began. I sighed deeply. I was slowly becoming aware of where I was and what I really wanted. Suddenly a beautiful flute. The Vltava of Smetana! What a piece! And so wonderful, even though Smetana had been deaf! What hope giving, encouraging piece! I sighed in relief and tried to look to the future. How could I live a life that would really make me happy? How could I enjoy these wonderful moments from holidays, hikes, days at the lake, with other people, language learning and studying and trying to integrate my everyday life so that I could be permanently happy? I tried to get all the elements of my previous happy memories into one picture in my imagination. Little by little I looked around the picture. There were mountains, valleys, rivers, lakes, the sea, the beach, the sun, flowers and plants. There were my children, my father, and a very interesting man, and my car, and I, who communicated and learned happily in several languages. How should I put this picture into reality now? Smetana underscored the drama of this question by the fact that the Vltava emptied majestically into the Elbe. After a short breather Beethoven’s moonlight sonata began. With a sigh, I looked for a solution to make the beautiful picture I had in my head a reality. During the rest of the way to work, I was just thinking about how I could travel around the world from one beautiful place to the next. How I got to know people, learn their language, experience their culture. How I could find new friends, experience joy and closeness with them. Like me, breathtaking landscapes wandering through, seeing incredible plants and trying out never-before-seen dishes for the first time. How I could hug my beloved family and friends again and again to tell them about my travels and to ensure that they were doing well. I bravely took my family and just mentally traveling with friends. We had to drive five cars, but that wasn’t a problem in my daydream.
A month later I was in Höhenkirchen near Munich in front of the car dealership that also sold roof tents. I couldn’t see where the sales room for the roof tents was supposed to be because of the cars on the site. I looked around the large car dealership. A lot had happened in the past four weeks. Every night during the night shift, I had searched the entire Internet, especially YouTube, for free ways, and that was to find ways to afford myself a life like in my daydream. Apart from lottery and fraud, drug deals and marrying a 100-year-old millionaire, there was probably no way to get to a million quickly. So I had to think on a smaller scale. On the one hand, I searched and found an office job in Tenerife. Secondly, I definitely didn’t want to live in a room or an apartment in Tenerife and spend half of my wages on rent. So I looked for alternative ways of life. I came up with the term minimalism. I found people with tiny houses, in caves, in caravans, in garden sheds in the allotment, in caravans, in tents on the beach, in self-built vans, and people who lived in normal cars. And then I found Thilo Vogel, and with him the roof tent nomads. It was the first time in my life that I saw a roof tent. I was immediately thrilled. The charisma of the charming photographer did the rest. I was blown away. I read as much as I could about the roof load because I didn’t understand how I should fit on my roof at 87 kilos at that time when the roof tent already weighed 60 kilos and my permissible roof load was limited to 75 kilos. Then I looked around for a dealer near Munich. And now I was standing in front of him to look at a roof tent. I took a deep breath and entered the shop. There was my roof tent. In the showroom. I asked a shop assistant if she could advise me. And we talked to each other about all properties of the roof tent. Then I signed the contract for the roof tent and paid a third. We agreed the final payment for the pickup at the beginning of August. I had just bought my new bedroom. I was suddenly a roof tent nomad. A completely new phase of life had begun.
The next podcast episode continues with the answer to your question: How were your first three months without an apartment? Please subscribe to my podcast so not to miss out the next installment and ongoing chapters. There will also be a book with all of these stories going to be published in June 2020.
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