Category Archives: General

Travel Bavaria With German Public Transport

by Alie of The Erlangen Expat and Starting Over in Stuttgart

Photo copyright dpa

Photo copyright dpa

If you can commute by bike to your job, why have a car? For a lot of expats the expense of buying, insuring and running a car in Germany, sometimes for the short period of time that you actually live in the country can prove to be unviable economically.

The good news is that Public transport, biking and walking will get you around for a fraction of the cost and shouldn’t even take you too much longer.

Trains

EC – EuroCity Express -These are the fancy grey trains you see at the station. These trains will connect with other neighbouring European countries. Best to book online for the best price, only get on this train if you have a specific EC ticket.

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The Week in Germany: Free Books, Eurovision, and Self-Driving Cars

Covers of two Adam Fletcher books.

The Foreigner Effect

“Sometimes, when foreigners come to a country and integrate into the local culture, they end up liking and enjoying doing things even the locals wouldn’t. These can include all sorts of cultural and traditional activities. One might say, the exoticness attracts the expat who can find no reason for said activity to be embarrassing. Well, this post is about German things which I as a Pakistani expat in the country, love doing or would like to do and which no German I know would ever consider doing. Consider this to be part 1, I’ll write more confessions as I come up with them.” Read more on Confessions of a Pakistani in Germany.

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Expat Personality Types

by Alie of The Erlangen Expat and Starting Over in Stuttgart

Gutaussehender Geschäftsmann drückt die JA Taste auf einen virtuellen Schirm

Whilst we are all expats here (being non Germans) and might stick out like sore thumbs to the locals, it is important to recognise that all expats are not necessarily created equal.

Here is my guide to the expats you might meet when you move abroad…

The Bragger

Commonly heard saying –
“You haven’t been to Neuschwanstein/Berlin/newest restaurant in town yet? you really must go”
“My kid speaks five languages”

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The Week in Germany: Surviving the Autobahn, Eurovision, and Berlin

Berlin in spring. Photo copyright Nicolette Stewart

Berlin in spring. Photo copyright Nicolette Stewart

Eurovision is coming

On May 23 the contest for best song in Europe (I guess this is what it is about? Frankly, I can’t stand to watch it) begins. If you want to know what this yearly tradition is all about, here is a Eurovision primer.

How to survive on the Autobahn

“Surviving the German Autobahn. The whole world knows it, you know it, I know it: if you’re not speeding like a mad-man on the German Autobahn you shouldn’t even be there in the first place. But other than testing your Porsche, BMW or Benz, there are a few facts that you need to know before going on the highways to hell.” Read more on Caroline and Mathew.

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The Dirndl, Or: Clothes Make the Woman

by Alie of The Erlangen Expat and Starting Over in Stuttgart

Photo courtesy Rare Dirndl

Photo courtesy Rare Dirndl

Now I’m not talking about just any kind of clothes here, I’m talking about German traditional clothes or Trachten. Men wear lederhosen (real men anyway) and women get the opportunity to wear a supremely flattering and beautiful outfit which they call a dirndl (pronounced Deer-n-dil).

The dirndl I refer to is not the very traditional dress that some Germans wear for celebrations but the more modern form of dress that is easy to wear and comes in may different styles, colours and price ranges. You can see the more traditionally dressed women at local events, they will often have matching outfits since they are part of the same group. Their outfits are beautiful down to the wicker bag and fresh flowers they tote.

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The Week in Germany: Bilinguals, Supstition, and Asparagus

Photo Public Domain: http://publicdomainarchive.com

Photo Public Domain: http://publicdomainarchive.com

Talking about The Germans as an expat

“Despite being a fairly homogeneous country Germany is still very regional when it comes to much of it’s culture, language (darn you regional dialects!), attitudes and general friendliness.  Even within regions there is a high level of diversity.  When we lived in Malente I had some of my positive experiences with strangers going out of their way to offer help.  Still we also had to deal with neighbors who made it clear they weren’t happy to be sharing an building with an American.  And herein lies the problem with stereotypes, they are too narrow to accurately define the parameters of reality.” Read more on Nine and ninety nine.

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