October 3, 2013

the news.

i’m telling you my news today. you may or may not care and that is entirely up to you, but i am quite excited.

i told my uncle last night and he was sort of the last hurdle beloved that i had to tell in person before putting it in writing. if i haven’t told you in person, please don’t be upset with me, it doesn’t mean that i don’t love you, it simply means that i am less scared of you than i am of my uncle. i was very scared he would yell at me. or even worse not speak to me at all. so before i started telling him, i made him promise.

me: promise that regardless of what i tell you now that you will not not speak to me anymore.
uncle: who are you marrying?
uncle: are you marrying insert name of hated ex-boyfriend here?
me: noooo!
uncle: okay, then i promise.

here is the big news: i am moving to hamburg next year.


there i said it. i wrote it. it’s on the internet. which is the 21st century version of putting something in stone, isn’t it?

you ask why? of course you do. here you go:

faq as to why annika is leaving beautiful, sunny cape town and moving to hamburg which is known more for its fish rolls and drizzling rain. (not that there is anything wrong with fish rolls!)

q: when did you make this decision?
a: three and a half weeks ago after a sunday afternoon nap dream about hamburg.

q: is that when you make your important decisions? after a nap?
a: the value of naps is completely underrated. i believe in their powers and make most of my important decisions either during nap time or when i’m in the shower. restaurants should come with beds or showers, because it takes me forever to decide what i want to order.

q: but don’t you like cape town?
a: i love cape town! but sometimes love is not enough.

q: didn’t you always say that cape town was your home?
a: i did say that, but in the end it actually isn’t my home. i can’t even say drol in die drinkwater properly and i don’t like rugby. i also got into an argument once with an ex when he wanted to buy a small braai and put it on my balcony. i thought that was silly as i have a perfectly fine stove and good frying pans.

q: during your last christmas holiday in germany you were not only sick, but also depressed – how will you manage?
a: that’s why i’m planning to move in summer, so i can ease into it. also i will tell my dad to make something else than oily beans for christmas lunch so i won’t get sick again.

q: still…why are you moving?
a: besides the nap dream? i read this lovely story from natasha. she had just gotten robbed in her sleep and could still find such comfort in the fact that she is south african and how she loves her country, her home. i thought that was beautiful, but i realized when it comes to south africa i can’t relate.

q: have you tried?
a: yes, i have tried a lot. for six years in fact. but it has been hard, so now i want to live in a place where maybe relating for me is a bit easier.

q: what are you going to do in germany?
a: besides dancing a whole night on the reeperbahn and eating a fish roll for breakfast? okay, in no order of importance:
play uno with my nephew.
have my brother cook me dinner.
meet marie’s baby girl.
play with marie’s baby girl.
fly to paris for a weekend to eat all the macarons at ladurée.
bring back more macarons to eat with julia.
actually, scratch that.
i’d fly to paris with julia and eat all the macarons at ladurée together.
eat joey’s pizza and paint my nails red with xenia.
do bikram yoga every day.
be home for my dad’s birthday and finally clean up the attic.
have carnival in cologne again.
get an awesome job. or work freelance. or start my own business. just because i can.
drink rhubarb juice. with the good aldi champagne.
have my mum make me the original poor man’s meal.
finally fly with ryanair. to barcelona and rome and morocco and london (ash!!!).
shop at cos. and buy some prada shoes.

the list could go on and on.

q: but won’t you miss cape town?
a: i will miss cape town terribly. and if i were to put together a list of things i love and like doing here it would be just as long.

q: then why do you go?
a: you have asked that before. i am simply a bit stuck here. i need a new adventure.

q: i don’t like it.
a: that’s not a question and you don’t have to like it. everybody who is important to me likes it or at least understands and supports my decision.

guys, if you think this was a weird post you are probably right and i apologize. i can’t really put it all into one coherent string of thoughts yet, at least not in writing. as i have mentioned before my head is swimming these days with the magnitude of my decision and how i will make it all happen and how much i will miss cape town and the questions of am i freaking crazy? and should i take my pizza shovel with? go around in my head. so that is why this post is what it is and the answers to those last questions are probably yes and yes. i will leave as such for now.


  1. Wow lady, this IS big news! And I never got to do that yoga class:(
    So happy that you are off on new adventures! Seems to me that change is in the air at the moment. I will of course continue reading your lovely blog and look forward to hearing all about what you get up to in Hamburg X

    1. Thanks :) Well, I am still here for the whole summer - have not set a moving date yet, so there will be plenty of time for you to come to class!

  2. Annika, the whole world is your home! Enjoy your new adventure :) xx

  3. This is your best blog post. Sad you're leaving CT, but excited for your move home. Sounds amazing and slightly jealous of your close proximity to Paris and all the macaroons! X

  4. Cape Town will be poorer for loosing you. We will miss you every day and mark the calendar with clinking glasses of bubbly for when you return for your yearly visits (best add that into your budget). I get very sad when I think of loosing you but then also smile when I think of the fun you're going to have on your new adventure. I love you, Annika Ziehen. I will miss you so very very much.

    1. thank you, my darling - now you made me cry!!
      the plan is to marry a german millionaire instead of getting a job, so i can come twice a year and will bring some french champagne with me too :)

  5. Thank you Sindy and Keri!! I shall start a macaron shipping business for Capetonians :)

  6. Well, I moved to Hamburg 8 years ago, coming from Italy... I guess you can see that it wasn't easy, especially the weather part.
    Still, I totally understand you and even I feel at home here, so... good choice! ;-)

  7. I think this is super exciting! Congrats on the decision. I know how scary a move is. CHANGE. BUT... it's so rewarding and I can relate with needing a new adventure. Granted I only moved cities, but for me Cape Town is like a whole DIFFERENT country in comparison to Johannesburg. The only thing that makes me feel like I'm still in SA, is the accents and Rand. That's IT!
    Moving country is amazing and brave! Besides, home is where the heart is and with your family being there, it is perfect!!

  8. Super jealous!


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