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 Germany

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songbird
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Age : 35
Location : Munich, Germany
Posts : 429

PostSubject: Germany   Sat 3 Apr 2010 - 22:27

I was asked to write something about the country I live in. And I must say, it's quite hard... I won't talk about our interesting and difficult history that continues to have an effect of all our lives till today and in the future - that would be a work of hours and hours. Let me just say that it's astonishing that a country with such a horrible past has managed to get over the division so peacefully. I was able to get to know "both sides of the story" as I was born in the Eastern part of Germany and now live in the Western part. (For my generation it's still meaningful which part of Germany you come from, although I hope, it'll become less and less important.)
What I definitely love 'bout my country is its many different landscapes - we have access to the ocean as well as the mountains. And as the state is split in 16 provinces, there is also a great variety in dialects, customs, behaviour of the people and even in politics.
I love our rich culture (think of the classical music, the architecture like the "Church of Our Lady" in Dresden or the Cologne Cathedral or castle "Neuschwanstein", the "Bauhaus"-style, the "country of poets and thinkers", our arthouse cinema, our food and so on).
You may all know the stereotypes about Germany and the Germans: well-organised, clean, accurate, busy, a little bit too reserved and a little bit too grim. Well, there's definitely a grain of truth in all these clichées. wink

....
Wow, this really is tough. I just don't know where to start and where to end... angel There is soooo much to say about Germany and so much to experience when you come here. I'd suggest you just ask me and the other Germans in our lovely forum here everything you ever wanted to know about us and the country we live in.
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tetepion
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Age : 28
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Sun 4 Apr 2010 - 7:30

Although we know the general history
I learned a bit more of Germany thanks to your summary ^ ^

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molkoqueen
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Age : 32
Location : germany
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Sun 4 Apr 2010 - 7:45

great work songbird!
i didn't want to write a thread about germany, as i am french and don't really like germany, although i live here, and so i wouldnt have had much to say.. but seriously.. the way you wrote , and described things, makes me like it.... would make me like it, if i wouldn't have my own opinion already.

as i said, germany is really one of the countries i wouldnt choose to live in.
i do though, yeah, cause it wasent in my hands as a kid and it's not easy to change country on your own from one day to the next.
but i hope i will someday.

it's true, germany has a lot of wonderful landscapes, still not as beautiful as ireland or australia for example =p
i find germany's landscape as boring as 90% of the people living here.

that's one point that annoys me most about this country: most germans are very narrow minded.
and as songbird already said, well-organised, clean, accurate, busy, a little bit too reserved and a little bit too grim. far too grim for my taste.

sure, france and it's citizens also have their own kink, but i love their way of living. their freedom. their carefreeness.


if you have been on holidays in germany, or live here, or moved away, or wish to visit germany someday, post your impressions, opinions, views, and maybe also pictures here, for all people to get to know germany a little better.

or create a thread about your own country ;)
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Blackbird
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Age : 26
Location : Neubrandenburg // Germany
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Sun 4 Apr 2010 - 15:59

As a German myself I can give you another perspective of Germany.

It matters in which part of this country you are when it comes to people's attitude. I live in the north-east of Germany, in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. I haven't been to Bavaria yet & I'm not quite sure if I'd like it there, because people there have another way of living than here. But, don't understand me in a wrong way, there are lots of predjudices, I don't really know for sure.

What's typical German a lot of people ask...& leather trousers aren't typical for our country! grin That's typical for Bavaria & not for the rest of Germany. That's what most people think & they're wrong in this special case.

I really think our landscape is beautiful. It offers a variety of different flora which is pretty nice for our climate. Of course, other countries also have a great landscape, but ours isn't that boring.

Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne, Munich - especially the first two cities you should visit, because they have an interesting architecture & a nice culture. Although Cologne & Munich (like I said before, I haven't been there yet) offer great possibilities. You should make some experiences on your own, Germany isn't as boring as you might think.

When it comes to history...well, that's another long discussed problem. I'd say, most of you know what happend, so explaining would be needless. But it's interesting & most of the time shocking to visit for example 'Buchenwald', one of some former concentration camps which are nowadays memorial places. You'll learn a lot about the time during the war period. Pefect, if you're interested in some historical places & facts.

The North & the Baltic Sea are also pretty nice to visit.
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AshJ
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Sun 4 Apr 2010 - 19:52

wooow ! all i can say is thanks !
as molkoqueen already said, your two explanation about Germany, change a bit my point of view :)
its really amazingly interesting to read, and to know how you feel and how you see Germany. Thanks =)
i wish i'll be able to visit this country more one day

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songbird
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Age : 35
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Sun 11 Apr 2010 - 12:42

tetepion asked in another thread if there's still tension between east and west Germany. I wouldn't call it tensions but of course we have many differences, misunderstandings and a lot of stereotypes. The 40 years of divison has influenced live on both sides and the 20 years since the reunification obviously weren't long enough. It's a big topic on TV and in newspapers at every anniversary. And, I can only speak for my familiy, it still is a big topic on every familiy party and the older family members pass it on to the younger ones and so it does affect their lives. I think it's a much bigger topic for the people in the East and I know many who wish to get back the old times (which I can't understand - how do you want to live in a totalitarian system??).
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tetepion
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Sun 11 Apr 2010 - 19:34

Songbird thank you for answering the question
I also thought there would be this kind of situation but I was not sure,
so it's better that I'm asking !! ^^

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AreYouAwake
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Mon 12 Apr 2010 - 13:31

I'm from the UK originally but I've been living in Germany for almost 10 years now. I lived in Berlin for the first year, then moved to Munich where I've been ever since.

I definitely prefer Berlin. The conservative attitudes of a lot of people down here in Bavaria really bother me sometimes. I also think Berlin has a lot more diversity to it. However, a lot of people I know (foreign visitors, not Germans) prefer Munich because they find it "cleaner" and "prettier. I don't know, I just have more of a connection to Berlin but I know I'll probably never move back.

I'm also not the biggest fan of the Oktoberfest so that's not really a bonus of living here for me. grin

There are a lot of crazy rules and regulations in Germany that I really don't understand at times. I'll give you an example: we "have to" plant two trees in our garden. It's a rule set down by our local council. These trees have to be a certain kind (only native ones, so no palm trees for example smile ) and the trunk has to have a minimum diameter of 16 cm. Also, our garden shed has to be at least 5 metres away from the pavement.

I think that some of the bureaucracy here makes sense, e.g, Germany is a very employee friendly country and there is no culture of "hire and fire" like there is in other countries. But it can also be very frustrating!
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songbird
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Mon 12 Apr 2010 - 14:17

Hahaha, that tree-thing is soooooo German. I'm sure you aren't allowed to plant it anywhere in your garden but in a certain order and with a certain space within the two trees. grin (Is it a "Schrebergarten" or does the garden belong to a house? I ask because the rules for a community garden are really crazy.)
I thought, Munich would be the perfect place for me to live in when I came here 9 years ago, as it is so clean, offers a variety of good jobs in my branch and as it's a safe village that just happens to have millions of inhabitants but the attitude of most people just bothers me from time to time. It's the "mia san mia" (we are what we are)-mentality and the estimation to live in the best city ever.
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AreYouAwake
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Age : 40
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PostSubject: Re: Germany   Tue 13 Apr 2010 - 9:08

songbird wrote:
(Is it a "Schrebergarten" or does the garden belong to a house? I ask because the rules for a community garden are really crazy.)
... It's the "mia san mia" (we are what we are)-mentality and the estimation to live in the best city ever.

It belongs to a house. I think it's crazy that we don't have the right to plant what we want on our own property. I mean, I can kind of understand the ruling relating to the colour of the awning over the patio or balcony but trees???

And I know what you mean about the "mia san mia" attitude.

As I said, I'm not from Germany but I like to think I am bilingual and also that I don't have a British accent when I speak. However, while my accent does have a Bavarian twang to it, I speak "hochdeutsch" although I understand Bavarian really well. I've been with my partner for 13 years now but I still get treated like an alien by most of the people in the village where he originally comes from. While of course there are exceptions, they are very sceptical about people who were not born and brought up in that area and tend not to make an effort to get to know you. We don't live there thank God (I'm a city girl, a village in the middle of nowhere would be my idea of hell) but it is always very uncomfortable for me when we attend one of the local footballer's weddings or go to the football Christmas do. I've given up trying to make conversation with them because it's not worth the effort to be honest and I really haven't got a clue what I'd speak to most of them about.
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