You are currently viewing AK Month-to-month Recap: October 2023

AK Month-to-month Recap: October 2023


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Some months are humbling. This one definitely was. After a month of near-constant driving classes, I used to be prepared for my check.

I aced the written check. Then I failed my driving check. Then I took a second driving check two weeks later — and failed THAT one, too.

I’ve obtained yet one more likelihood to cross the check. Only one.

Hoo boy.

Kate takes a selfie while on a boat in the river in Oxford, a castle tower in the distance behind her.
Punting on the river in Oxford!

Locations Visited

  • Prague, Czech Republic
  • Dresden and Meissen, Germany
  • Oxford, Beaconsfield, Bray, and Watford, England
Kate and Charlie take a smiling selfie at Dunkin', holding up Dunkin-branded coffee and donuts.
Once you marry a Masshole, you marry Dunkin.

Highlights

I obtained some superb information from the Czech ministry of immigration. I can apply for everlasting residency in April!!!

I needed to make an emergency immigration go to this month (extra on that under), and I discovered a number of items of stories.

First off — Charlie, although British, is taken into account an EU citizen within the Czech system as a result of he obtained everlasting residency earlier than Brexit finalized. And due to that, he’s eligible to use for Czech citizenship now (and he already handed the language check!).

It seems that being married to an EU citizen offers you a LOT of perks. I can get everlasting citizenship after two years of dwelling right here and one 12 months of marriage to an EU citizen (not essentially a Czech citizen) — not the customary 5 years. AND I don’t should take the Czech language check for everlasting residency!

However there’s extra. As a result of I’m married to an EU citizen, I can apply for Czech citizenship after 5 years of steady residency! I can apply in 2025 — 5 years sooner than I assumed!! I might want to cross the citizenship language check (stage B1), however I’ll be again to Czech classes in January and plan on finding out for years.

A round tower at Oxford University, on a green surrounded by a fence with lots of bikes locked to it.
Oxford was a revelation.

A beautiful getaway to Oxford. Charlie and I am going to his good friend’s annual bonfire occasion within the UK each fall, and we’ve began including on a bonus English vacation spot. This 12 months, we added Oxford, the college metropolis that is among the hottest day journeys from London.

I actually cherished Oxford! The town has a lot youthful power, attractive structure (lots of the Harry Potter motion pictures had been filmed right here), enjoyable retailers and markets, and a beautiful riverside setting. I’m glad we stayed in a single day so we obtained to see greater than we’d have on a day journey.

On the best way again, we visited Bekonscot — a cute little miniature village that Charlie used to go to when he was a child. (It’s so previous, even Queen Elizabeth used to go to when SHE was a child!) The entire buildings are lined with cute little puns, which is enjoyable for the adults.

We additionally had lunch at Heston Blumenthal’s pub, The Hind’s Head. A lot of the meals was great, particularly the scallops, however the employees had been proper to warn us concerning the richness of the oxtail and kidney pudding — we may barely eat it!

The bonfire was nice enjoyable, and we obtained to spend time with Charlie’s household and associates who’re like household. Together with his sister’s new kittens, who’re filled with power and SO cute.

Two small, shiny kittens playing on a cat tree. The gray one is Teddy Bear and the Tortie is Blossom. Both are looking up at the camera with wide eyes.
My feline nieces — Teddy Bear and Blossom!

A enjoyable little day in Germany. We drove 90 minutes to Dresden to hit up some locations they don’t have in Prague (Dunkin’ Donuts and the Apple Retailer). Afterward, we drove to the city of Meissen to go to their porcelain museum. A pleasant and fascinating place! (Although actually, spending a Saturday at a porcelain museum is likely to be probably the most middle-aged factor I’ve ever achieved.)

Numerous good instances in Prague. I lastly made it to Prague Zoo for the primary time — and I see why folks find it irresistible a lot. Elephants, giraffes, gorillas, penguins, and a type of scary chairlift. My favorites had been the meerkats!

Charlie and I additionally found a brand new and excellent pizza place in Prague — SASY The Unique. Among the best Neapolitans I’ve had in a very long time, although not overly soupy. Their diavolo is likely to be the perfect diavolo I’ve ever had! Not unhealthy for being within the coronary heart of the previous city, the place it’s arduous to search out truly good eating places!

We additionally tried a brand new place in Žižkov with Detroit-style pizza — Third Coast Pizza. Nice stuff. In addition they make monumental tater tots.

A graffiti-covered stairway through a wooded park in Prague, with some of the leaves turning red and orange.
Taking a fall stroll in Letná Park.

Challenges

Um, failing my driver’s check not as soon as however twice type of tops the record. I talked about it lots on Fb and in my e-newsletter, and gained’t get into as a lot element right here.

The fundamentals: on the primary check, I hit the curb whereas parallel parking on the left aspect of the road. On the second check, I stalled whereas crossing tram tracks, which is much worse (however I preserve wouldn’t have occurred if the evaluator hadn’t advised me to make a u-turn on the final second potential and the translator had identified the proper phrase for u-turn!).

So, what’s going to occur now? I’ve my subsequent check scheduled, and it’s my LAST CHANCE. Should you fail your third driving check, it is advisable to take driving faculty over once more. It’s a Czech legislation.

I refuse to pay one other $1500 for Czech driving faculty. My thoughts is made up: it doesn’t matter what occurs, I’m renewing my US license once I’m dwelling in Massachusetts this December. I’ll have a legitimate license, it doesn’t matter what.

Small porcelain figurines of an 18th century orchestra made up of monkeys. The passionate conductor gives me Mozart in Amadeus vibes.
The Meissen Porcelain Museum was nicely well worth the go to!

Discovering out my residency had expired. So this was the emergency I had talked about. As I went by means of immigration on the best way to the UK, the agent advised me that my residency had expired in August.

I freaked out — my household visa was speculated to be good for 5 years! He advised me it was okay, that I’d simply must renew it once I get again. It seems that the Czechs discontinued the passport-like residency e book that I’ve, as they need everybody to maneuver to biometric ID playing cards.

Did the Czechs inform folks this? NO! They ship me loads of registered mail about taxes and medical insurance, and also you’d suppose they’d ship me one thing about this, however they didn’t. They solely introduced it on their web site.

Due to this, the Czech immigration businesses all advised their shoppers instantly and organized for them to get biometric playing cards. It seems my company closed down a 12 months and a half in the past. THAT’S why I by no means discovered.

Anyway — I employed a brand new company, they usually obtained me a brand new bridge visa good by means of February. I’m hoping to get a biometric appointment in January.

Oh, and that’s not all! There was a comedy of errors in getting all of our paperwork in! Do you know that Czech paperwork can solely be signed in blue ink, as a result of they’re void in any other case? WE DID NOT KNOW THAT and now we all know. Anyway — it was wild, however I’m glad it’s over now.

Two elephants, an adult male and child male, intertwining their trunks at Prague Zoo.
These two elephants at Prague Zoo are father and son!

The smack of Google. Should you’re not in search engine optimization circles, you most likely haven’t heard that Google launched two updates this month. Google updates fairly often hit bloggers arduous. I’ve been hit arduous by just one Google replace, ever.

The primary hit got here in October, referred to as the Useful Content material Replace, and it was DEVASTATING. A few of my associates misplaced 50%, 60%, even 90% of their visitors. And by some means, I evaded it utterly. I felt like I had survived.

After which the second replace got here: and THAT one hit me. My visitors is now down 20%, and the timing isn’t nice as we’re moving into the sluggish season for journey and my visitors can even be down from that. New Hampshire Manner obtained hit arduous, too.

The excellent news: My visitors continues to be up 12 months over 12 months, and I’ve financial savings stashed away. Instances like these are while you dig in, make investments, and get inventive.

Lewis and Murray the gray tabby cats on two chairs. Murray is standing up to eat plain spaghetti hanging on a fork, while Lewis chomps in the background.
Seems Murray loves plain spaghetti now.

Weblog Posts of the Month

What’s it actually prefer to journey to Greenland? — I’m so excited to share Greenland with you guys! And it’s not what you would possibly suppose. It definitely wasn’t what I anticipated.

A Information to Ischia, Italy — The Better of Ischia Island — Ischia is SUCH a sleeper vacation spot! I feel it’s one among Italy’s finest islands. And I can’t wait to return.

18 Enjoyable Issues to do in Oak Bluffs MA — Oak Bluffs is the actually cool city in Martha’s Winery with all of the brightly coloured Gingerbread Homes!

A Information to Edgartown, Massachusetts: Martha’s Winery’s Prettiest City — Edgartown is SO stunning, and there’s a lot to do there. Right here’s a information to the city.

Visiting Chappaquiddick Island — Issues to Do and Extra! — Chappaquiddick is a very great island off the coast of Martha’s Winery that’s solely related to one horrible factor. It deserves to be seen for what it truly is.

A Pixar-like cartoon with gray cats that look just like Lewis and Murray riding vespas side by side on the Amalfi Coast, Italy!
I made some Pixar-style AI cartoons of Lewis and Murray this month!

Guide Membership This Month

Our subsequent e book membership will happen on Sunday, November 19, at 1:00 PM Jap Time. We might be studying Days on the Morisaki Bookshop by Japanese writer Satoshi Yagisawa.

“Twenty-five-year-old Takako has loved a comparatively simple existence—till the day her boyfriend Hideaki, the person she anticipated to wed, casually declares he’s been dishonest on her and is marrying the opposite girl. Abruptly, Takako’s life is in freefall. She loses her job, her associates, and her acquaintances, and spirals right into a deep melancholy. Within the depths of her despair, she receives a name from her distant uncle Satoru.

An uncommon man who has at all times pursued one thing of an unconventional life, particularly after his spouse Momoko left him out of the blue 5 years earlier, Satoru runs a second-hand bookshop in Jimbocho, Tokyo’s well-known e book district. Takako as soon as regarded down upon Satoru’s life. Now, she reluctantly accepts his provide of the tiny room above the bookshop rent-free in alternate for serving to out on the retailer. The transfer is short-term, till she will be able to get again on her toes. However within the months that comply with, Takako surprises herself when she develops a ardour for Japanese literature, turns into a daily at a neighborhood espresso store the place she makes new associates, and finally meets a younger editor from a close-by publishing home who’s going by means of his personal messy breakup.

However simply as she begins to search out pleasure once more, Hideaki reappears, forcing Takako to rely as soon as once more on her uncle, whose personal life has begun to unravel. Collectively, these seeming opposites work to grasp one another and themselves as they proceed to share the knowledge they’ve gained within the bookshop.”

You’ll be able to enroll right here. Hope to see you there!

Most Well-liked Reel on Instagram

Ever heard of a trojsklenka? This can be a Czech triple glass the place all of the glasses are related beneath. They’re an effective way to drink chilli griotka, a spicy cherry liqueur which you can get at (after all) Kantyna.

It’s humorous, however that is one Czech factor that slips by means of the cracks typically. I used to be so shocked to listen to a few of my frequent Czech Republic-visiting associates had by no means seen this!

I needed to make a reel about it, and this one did nicely! You’ll be able to comply with me on Instagram at @adventurouskate for extra!

Two pairs of legs wearing the same jeans. The first pair is on a tall Black model, where the jeans hit mid-calf. On the right is short Kate, where the jeans go to her ankles.

Style Second of the Month

First off, get pleasure from that prime photograph as a result of that’s what occurs while you order cropped denims and are 5’4″! THANKS FOR SAVING ME ON HEMMING, PAIGE!!

In all honesty — these are the Paige Anessa Denims. I needed a pair of darkish wide-leg denims and these are super-comfy and super-on-trend. And at my peak, they solely look the teeniest bit cropped on me.

I’ve been carrying Paige since 2008, once I went to a bit denim boutique in Boston referred to as Jean Remedy and the proprietor, Leah, took one take a look at me and grabbed all of the Paiges, telling me this model was made for my physique form. (Man, I want that store nonetheless existed.)

That is what they really appear to be on (ignore my Joker-esque smile):

Kate taking a mirror selfie wearing a long beige trench coat, button-down silk shirt with leopards on it, blue wide-leg jeans, purple belt with gold buckle, burgundy patent leather heels, carrying a black square crossbody bag.
See? Denims look regular!

Additionally, this month I downloaded the Stylebook app after studying this viral Reddit publish. On the app you observe all the garments you put on, and it calculates your value per put on, your most worn colours, manufacturers, and so on. And OMG that is the type of factor that appeals to me a lot!!

I’ve been on it for 12 days to this point, and it’s serving to me gamify my trend — carrying costly items extra usually, rotating outfits, and carrying numerous equipment to get down every part’s value per put on!

What I Watched This Month

The Bear. Charlie and I started watching season 2 again when it got here out, nevertheless it burdened us out and we would have liked a while away from it. We got here again, and it turned out to be THE MOST STRESSFUL EPISODE OF ALL TIME. “Fishes.”

I feel “Fishes” might be up there with “Fly” from Breaking Unhealthy — the episode that some folks detest, and others reward for its brilliance amid the discomfort. (Personally, I’m on the aspect of hating each episodes, regardless of loving each reveals.)

However then comes a completely stunning episode of tv. “Forks.” And that may have you ever falling in love with this present and the beforehand most unloveable character. What this present does so nicely is exhibiting the depth and great thing about the restaurant business, and the individuals who discover their dwelling there. No episode extra so than “Forks.” Get by means of “Fishes” and also you’ll be rewarded handsomely.

Beneath Deck replace: This month, we watched OG Beneath Deck: Season 10, happening in St. Lucia. Also referred to as the one the place Captain Lee has to depart and he’s changed by…CAPTAIN SANDY. Simply once we thought we had a couple of seasons with out her…

You understand what? What I like about Beneath Deck is that it’s a research in the right way to handle folks. Captain Sandy is a horrible supervisor and she or he hides it for a bit on this season, then it comes roaring again so virulently.

A flamingo drinking from a still lake in the desert, snow-covered mountains in the background.
The Atacama Desert, by way of Shutterstock

Coming Up in November 2023

It’s lastly time for the BIG HONEYMOON! In late November, Charlie and I are flying to Chile to start our monthlong South American sojourn. Chile might be my first new nation since Cuba in 2019!!

We’re starting our journey with a couple of days at a vineyard resort within the Colchagua Valley. After that, we’re heading as much as San Pedro de Atacama to expertise the desert for a couple of days.

After that, we’re taking a “work break” (I do know, I do know, however we’d like this) in Puerto Montt, mixing in a couple of excursions across the area, together with to Chiloé. The month will wrap up there, and in December we’re heading to Patagonia!

I’m so excited to see these new locations and expertise them with my new husband! This might be our fourth continent collectively, for those who rely Azerbaijan as Asia (I imply…it FEELS much more like Asia than Europe).

What are you as much as this month? Share away!

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