At the end of my senior year of college, all of my friends were submitting applications for graduate schools and office jobs. I decided to go a less conventional route and become an Au Pair and it’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Being young and naive, I had no idea what questions I should ask my future Host Family and I only had a single Skype conversation with my Host Parents before I booked my flight and moved to Germany! Fortunately, I got very lucky and had the most amazing family I could have dreamed of. As an Au Pair a whole new world was open to me and I made so many beautiful memories that I will cherish my whole life.
From celebrating Germany’s victory in the world cup, to riding a motorcycle for the first time with my host grandpa - everyday as an Au Pair brought a new adventure. I came to know and love my host parents’ friends and, when I would drop my host sister off at kindergarten, I would greet all her classmates by name. I rarely felt homesick during my year in Germany because I was thrown into such a loving family and community. There is also a tight knit community of Au Pairs in Cologne and I made friends with Au Pairs from at least a dozen different countries! Though the Au Pair salary is admittedly meager, I was still able to save enough money to travel to Sweden, Denmark, and Morocco on my own and I also travelled with my Host Family to Munich, Leipzig, and a small skiing village in Austria.
My year as an Au Pair instilled in me a desire to continue traveling, learning new languages, and leading an extraordinary life full of adventure. Since completing my Au Pair year, I have lived and worked in China and backpacked through nine other countries. My life long adventure continues today as I apply to work in Ukraine with the Peace Corps. All of these journeys were inspired by incurable Wanderlust that I developed as an Au Pair in Germany.