This is part two of my short posts on my journey through a PhD program in Germany.
As of yet, we haven’t even landed in Germany. Let’s at least, in part 2, set the stage for the prompting of the journey and arrive at the San Francisco airport, if not in Frankfurt.
I knew that part of my starting over included going back to school. I ran into things during my first four years of university that had taken hold and I was to run back to them in seek of shelter. When low on opportunities, seek out where they exist. I enrolled in a Master’s program at a university closest to my parents’ house.
Any Masters program has the danger of being of questionable worth in the long term -a philosophy program perhaps more so. There are risks in hoping to come out of the program enriched and with a more clear direction in life. This hope is a wager of sorts, and I assume it is the same wager anyone makes when they decide to move towards a passion that is also a step away from the immediately practical.
And with that wager we have the prompting for the journey. Leaving the comfort of a decent paying job, a comfy apartment and a life that had consistent sense of normalcy for the vague rewards of reading more Nietzsche.
Those hopes and rewards weren’t going to be handed over. They were to be battled for; obstacles needed to be overcome, castles conquered, dragons slain and tribulations withstood.
My wager was high stakes. If I were to pretend to pride myself in reading German philosophers, what were I to do with the knowledge that I was only reading a translation? That there were people in the world with access to original texts? To learn how to sword fight, I wanted to rid my practice of waving around mere sticks.
I sold my car, put more money on the table and signed up for a program that would ship me abroad. Anything else I owned was boxed and I went to the airport.
I had tried to brush up on my German before leaving but there might as well be no purpose to barely being able to speak a couple phrases.