Cliché 15 – Frosty or Freundlich?

When many people imagine Germans, they think of very cold and unwelcoming people – this is often due to their portrayal in Hollywood movies – however, after visiting or living in Germany many people are surprised at how untrue this is!

Let’s have a look at some of the following situations:

 

Berlin

Photo: Digital Version/ Getty Images/ dpa/ picture alliance/ B.Z.- Montage

 

  1. You have just arrived in Berlin, your starting point for a trip around Europe. You arrived last night, got to your hotel or hostel, had a shower, slept, ate some breakfast and are now bright eyed and bushy tailed, standing on the Friedrichstraβe with a giant map in hand. It is not uncommon for a German to approach you in this situation (particularly if you are alone) and ask if you require some assistance. This person tells you, that you need to head to the U-Bahn station and take the U-Bahn for 4 stations to get to your destination. You walk down to the U-Bahn platform where you are confronted with a ticket machine – but which ticket do you buy? You turn around and see someone waiting to use the machine and ask them which ticket you require, and they will probably run you through your options and help you find the best one (unless they are in a rush and the U-Bahn is coming in 1 minute, in which case it might be best to let them go first and ask someone else!).

 

Breakfast

 

  1. You are in high school and are going on exchange to Germany over the summer holidays. You nervously walk out of the doors at Frankfurt Airport where you see your exchange family waiting for you with a big welcome sign and huge smiles across their faces. Waiting on your bed at home is a selection of German chocolates. Your host mother has made a lovely dinner for you and sends you to bed early, so that you have a better chance of getting over your jet lag. In the morning your host family greets you at the breakfast table – which is covered with every breakfast food imaginable – and asks you about what you’d like to see during your stay in Germany, so that they can try and take you everywhere you’d like to go.

 

Refugees

 

  1. At the beginning of the current refugee crisis, the world turned to see what Germany would do – and they did exactly what everyone expected them to do: they opened up their arms and their hearts to welcome those in need. Most cities were overwhelmed by the amount of items donated – everything from food, to clothing, and medical supplies. In many cities refugees were welcomed by a large feast prepared by the locals and many people around the country, particularly students, have volunteered their free time to teach the refugees English.

 

Is everyone in Germany super friendly and welcoming? Of course not.

Is everyone in Germany cold and welcoming? Absolutely not – not even close! We’d say this myth is totally:

busted

 

Images and information retrieved from:

http://www.thewednesdaychef.com/the_wednesday_chef/2013/04/a-real-german-breakfast.html

 

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