The New World was supposed to bring promises of plenty and new life. It was what every explorer dreamt of. Many people from all over the world packed their bags and left to establish colonies in the New World. However, this new land holds many dark secrets - some that should be kept hidden.
Cold air swept through the spacious land. The dying blaze of sunlight became a mere kindle as it sunk into the horizon, not to be seen again until the following day. The city of New Orleans was even more beautiful than I had imagined. We had nothing of this sort back in Germany - where I had lived, at least.
I pulled my coat tighter around me, nestling into its depths so that I might feel the heat inside. Though it was almost sundown, people of all sorts were walking around the big city. Some of the voices talked stiffly and professionally, but most of the voices were elated, speaking in high tones and laughing.
Laughter. That was the only thing that I could understand from these Americans. Laughter is a universal language. If one tries to communicate in his native tongue, it will likely go nowhere, and soon, both people will be confused. However, if one decides to laugh, the foreigner will soon join in, unable to control himself. Laughter is the one tongue that spreads across the whole world - Old and New.
The man that had arranged my trip to America was nowhere to be found. He was Germanic, like me. I had counted on this man - Alois - to be my translator. He was gravely needed to help me get around America, and I could not possibly do anything without him! How, now, would I find him when I did not speak a lick of English?
I carefully tucked a strand of mousy-brown hair behind my ear, inspecting the area once more. I had never seen Alois before; all I knew was that he was the eldest son of a family friend that had moved from Germany around a decade ago to start a new life in none other than America.
"Fraulein Brigitte Zeigler?"
I jumped back into reality at the sound of my own name. It was spoken in German, of course, as I would understand, by the dialect was somewhat rougher and had a slight drawl to it. Turning, I caught sight of a strange man around my own age of nineteen with blindingly bright blonde hair. His blue eyes, almost a reflection of my own, seemed almost as if they could outshine his hair.
"You are Brigitte, are you not?"
I stared at him, confusion overwhelming me. Was this really Alois? Should he not know to address me in my native language? I knew not a bit of English, and I shifted uncomfortably in my stiff coat under the weight of his piercing gaze. What if this man really was Alois? How would I ever figure out how to navigate through America? I took a chance and looked back up at the alleged Alois.
"Sie sind Brigitte?" he asked, staring curiously into my eyes.
Finally! It must have been Alois! He knew my name and also spoke in German almost flawlessly. I wanted to reply back to him, but my wits were about me, and they whispered to me that Alois might not have known very much German, having grown up mostly in America. Instead, I merely nodded in reply. It would be best if I did not speak very much German around him, I think.
"You have to learn to speak English when you are here!" laughed the man in that strange English language once more. "You shalln't get very far without it!"
Now, I was not very educated. I had been taught by my mother a few things that would get me by in everyday life in America. I was taught to write my name as well as simple letters in English, though I had absolutely no clue what they stood for. Some of the English alphabet was much like the German one, though. I know how to write and read in German - a small portion, at least.
Alois made a gesture with his hands toward me. I assumed he wanted me to follow him, as there was no other logical explanation for it. Of course I would have to follow Alois; I really had no other choice, did I?
"The first objective I will tackle will be teaching you English, Fraulein."