Sunday, May 14, 2006

Things I Have Learnt About Germany

I've just returned from a few days in Germany, and here's what I have discovered:

* Everybody stops for a red 'Don't Walk' signal. Everyone. It's incredible - it's like that bit in The Matrix where they freeze the programme and the entire street stops moving. It's almost as if they value common sense over getting somewhere fifteen seconds earlier.

* There is not a single sausage roll in the entire country. Not one. You try to explain 'pig meat in pastry' and they look at you like you're from Venus. (There may have been a 'beef roll', but I didn't risk it.)

* If you stay very quiet and smile occasionally, people forget you don't actually speak the language.

* As a result, you start to pick up words - maybe one in twenty. That's after two days. Extrapolating this figure, a person could become fluent in, ooh, about a month. No wonder Germany children find it so easy.

* Outgoing flight - three and a half hour delay. Homebound - exactly on time. Through this one example I choose to see all myths about German efficiency as accurate.

* Oh, and prostitution is legal. Something I didn't discover until the end of my final day. Typical.


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