So Long, World Cup

It’s hard to believe that the World Cup is already over.  And with Germany coming out on top, what a lot of fun it has been.  We’ve had thirteen bloggers covering the ups and downs of the event since the beginning, and we wanted to take a moment to thank all of them for writing and all of you for reading and commenting.

We ended up with a total of 60 World Cup posts (which you can still find here if you just want to keep reliving the event) with Joshua Burns as our blogging superstar with over 18 percent of the posts.  Here here.  Thank you so much guys!

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The Everyday Expat: Understanding Cultural Awareness

Photo copyright dpa

Photo copyright dpa

Culture shock is often discussed when people consider moving abroad. Differences between home and destination country cultures can be confusing and difficult to navigate and the radical change in lifestyle can be harder than you might have imagined. Yet one of the best ways of preparing for ‘culture shock’ is by working on your cultural awareness – something which is less debated but in reality much more important for the success of your expat life long term.

Cultural awareness can be prepared for in advance but it is, above all else, something which is actively practised. Reading about your destination country before you go, especially advice from other expats, can give you a really good understanding of where you’re moving to, but once you’re there, remember to observe, ask questions politely and avoid making assumptions about the way people should or will behave.

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The Week in Germany: The Ball Is in Your Court

Photo copyright dpa

Photo copyright dpa

This week the ball is in your court: Your faithful YG Editor is off on vacation and won’t be around to comb the blogs for the most interesting Germany-related posts to share here.  Instead, I hoped that you all might tell me what the week’s best was: Just add a link in the comments if you’ve read an interesting blog or news post about Germany this week.  I look forward to catching up with them all when I get back.  And have a great weekend!

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German Cuisine: Why Marlene Dietrich Disliked Rutabagas

by Nadia Hassani

Photo copyright Spoonfuls of Germany

Photo copyright Spoonfuls of Germany

The third winter of World War I, whose beginning a century ago is commemorated this year, is also referred to in German as the Hungerwinter or Steckrübenwinter (Rutabaga winter). The blockade of Germany through the North Sea cut the country off from overseas trade and supplies, and the potato crop in 1916 had failed. As a result rutabagas, until that time mainly grown as animal fodder, became a staple of the 1,000-calorie ration-card diet for civilians.

Marlene Dietrich was then a teenager in Berlin. She would recall with a shudder how her family ate rutabagas for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and in every possible form. Most people’s faces turned yellow from all the rutabagas, hers didn’t. Her perfect, porcelain-like complexion stood out already then.

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World Cup Blog: End Of World Cup 2014 And Filling The Void Left Behind

by Ian Schneider, @EN541 

Well what a finale that was! It was a thoroughly exciting final game between Argentina and Germany, with either side looking like they could take the trophy home at any minute. I also found this final game was much better and more exciting than the 2010 final between Spain and the Netherlands, which is something I was worried about. Fortunately however, both teams attacked aggressively and there were lots of great plays on both sides.

Seattle Sounders vs. Portland Timbers (photo: Ian Schneider)

Seattle Sounders vs. Portland Timbers (photo: Ian Schneider)

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World Cup Blog: Road to Glory

by Yuri Damasceno 

Germany won the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. No matter how brilliant, it’s already old news and there isn’t much one can say that hasn’t already been said in the media and social networks. But more than winning the World Cup, Germany has accomplished a much more difficult task while making it look like easy game: they have conquered Brazilian hearts (and that was way before the heartbreaking 7X1).

Team Germany

Team Germany

Ever since their arrival in Salvador (the capital of the Brazilian state, Bahia) the German squad spread niceness and charisma wherever they went. Neuer and Schweinsteiger wore the uniform and sang the hymn of the local team Bahia and put smiles on the faces of local citizens (even the ones that don’t cheer for Bahia). Podolski and, the usual nice guy, Schweinsteiger, also wore the uniform of the most popular team in Brazil, Flamengo (from Rio de Janeiro). Many German players posted messages in Portuguese to the locals in an attempt to socialize with them (and also in person on beaches and streets of Brazil).

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