My name is Wendy. I have five sons and in America I would often help people remember my name by referencing the book, Peter Pan, which includes a character Wendy who takes care of a group of lost boys. We arrived in Vienna about six weeks ago and plan to be here for close to five years while my husband works on a project at the University of Vienna. My boys have started school in the Austrian school system and are busy learning German. I told them they can come home and teach me.
In preparation of our move I tried to get a head-start on learning German by listening to German lessons on CDs and doing some lessons online. It did help some, though I find I have enough knowledge to ask a basic question but not enough to understand an answer. It is very frustrating and isolating to not be able to communicate well. My hope in taking the intensive course is to develop a wide enough knowledge base to be able to use more German in daily life on a regular basis and continue to expand my vocabulary as I go.
Much of our time in Vienna so far has been busy with visits to various offices filling out necessary paperwork and arranging long term accommodations. We have managed to do a bit of exploring for fun. This weekend we visited two Advent markets where we tasted some delicious local food—the biggest pretzels I have ever seen and some delicious sweet almonds (which are harder to come by here than in America) and enjoyed looking at the goods for sale.