10 March 2012

Friedenau Friedhof (Cemetery)

I haven't written much lately, and for that, dear readers, I apologize.  I've been busy with appointments, improvising, painting(!) and also, I've been a little ill.  Most of my illness seems to have been stress-related, weird stuff going on with my digestive system and the need to sleep for almost 2 whole days.  But finally, my body has settled into the good old, "hey, you've got a sore throat!"  This, I know how to deal with.
Why the stress, you might wonder? It seemed like things were going so well.  Artist visa, loving partner, finally a cool home with a like-minded queer genderwarrior, an improv group, so what's with the stressy stomach?
Well, I must say that all of the above things make me feel amazing, and in truth, life IS going extremely well.  I'm sort of broke but, after doing my budget (but before doing my taxes, hmm) it looks like I will have just enough money to get by until I return to the States to work for 10 weeks.  I do feel very good about my living situation and I am having fun, learning things, and making good contacts in my Improv group, the Space Station Players, led by this guy
Genderwarrior Headquarters

But quite frankly, German bureaucracy has got me down.  See, in Germany, it is required of every person to have healthcare.  You can't go see a doctor if you don't have it.  There are no community clinics like there are in the States, at least not that I know of.  Part of the caveat of my Visa is that I have health insurance.  No problem, right?  I had private insurance for a moment (very expensive) in order to obtain my Visa, and now I'm on public insurance, although there is a little foggy as to who is providing it?  See I applied for Artist's Insurance, which is about half the cost as regular insurance for a self-employed person, but they want all this proof (beyond the pile of papers I already sent them) that I am indeed a money making professional here in Germany.  (My stomach begins to twist even as I write this.)  Give me a break!  I have been here not even 6 months, am trying to learn what I have come to understand is an extremely difficult language, and have been lost behind a pile of paperwork since November!  Where in god's name am I supposed to find the mental space to find gigs or make work when I'm busy filling out forms?  And 6 months is not a long time!  Seriously, it takes a few years of work and toil for an artist to make their mark.  But the insurance people want to see something NOW!  So I'm trying to compile any and everything I can regarding pay and written reviews of my work, regardless of whether it's from the States or not in the next week.  Unfortunately, many of my reviews are in a box in America somewhere and not on my hardrive.  Hmm, but we'll see what I can do.  I'm going to get some free professional advice on Monday.  The worst that can happen is I get rejected, owe the TK (public insurance, not artist insurance) a bunch of money, set up a payment plan, and try again with the KSK (artist insurance.)  It would probably help me a lot if I would stop switching genres, too.  Hmm
Enough of this nauseating bureaucratic shit.  I discovered a really amazing Cemetery down the street from where I live and took some photos.  Please enjoy them.
No Gravestone, just markers and ivy

Wall of Names

A little "patio" for the dead

Cool structure in cemetery.  Possibly a chapel?

A place to sit and think among the dead

Where there is death, there is also so much life

Cemetery Wildlife

Directly across the street, you can buy a headstone!

This is also directly across the street.  Hey, not far to go, I guess.

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