1) People walk everywhere. The towns are small and compact and have really cute cobblestone streets (they aren’t as cute when you’re driving on them [and onto the sidewalks] at 90 mph but whatevs) and it’s just much nicer than driving absolutely everywhere you go. I think this especially appealed to me because I can’t drive yet, so I liked how you could just get up and go wherever you wanted to go, whenever you wanted to.
2) The social scene was so much better. Kids went out every weekend, usually to the disco or house parties. I loved this because, well, I love to go out. And even though I couldn’t go to the disco because I was underage, I still thought that was wicked cool. If I lived in Germany I’d be hittin it up every weekend.
3) The apple juice was fizzy. Since I hated the fizzy water (most Americans will), I had to come up with more creative things to drink (not alcohol, let me remind you, because I am fifteen). So, I drank the fizzy apple juice as my substitute for water and it was absolutely heavenly. I miss it. Mixing Pellegrino and apple juice just isn’t the same as Apfelschorle.
4) They get breaks in school. One fifteen minute one in the morning, and then they get to go home for lunch for an HOUR. An hour! I remember one day, me and my friend Hannah went to someones house in another town to hang out during our lunch break, we had that much time to spare.
5) Everything is pretty. It may not be like this everywhere else in Germany, but I know that in the town I was staying in, everything was just beautiful. Perfectly manicured lawns and windmills in the distance and farmland and lots of fences and trees and ugh it was just so lovely and picturesque everywhere you went.
6) If you wanted to see someone, all you had to do was walk to their house. Oh, and people actually come to your door to pick you up, instead of text you from their car and say “here” or “cum out”, like they do here in America.
7) Everyone dressed nice. There was absolutely no way you’d see anyone in sweatpants, and God forbid you wear a t-shirt to school. All the style among the kids was very hip and fashionable. Lots of skinny jeans, converse, scarves, and cardigans. You could tell that people made an effort to look nice, even the boys. Especially the boys.
8) They ate lots and lots and lots of bread. Always for breakfast and dinner. This could be good or bad, depending on your preference. I love bread, so it was great for me. Everyday I put butter and Gouda cheese on my bakery roll and I was a very happy camper.
9) Sales tax was included in the price! No second guessing if you had enough money to buy something, because the price on it was always exact. This was definitely one of my all time favorite things. And the fact that they had 1 and 2 Euro coins, so if I was paying in change from the bottom of my purse, there was always a good chance that I would stumble upon a 2 Euro coin mixed up with my 1 cent coins, which was always bound to make my day.
10) If you wanted to travel to another country, it only took a few hours by train. Since Europe is so compact, we could’ve traveled to a multitude of other countries and it wouldn’t have costed that much or taken too much time. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to go anywhere else, but it’s still one of the things I loved about Germany, and Europe in general. This will be wonderful when I come back.
11) Speaking German. I loved speaking German, even though I was horrible at it and sounded like a behindert 3rd grader. I loved it when I tried to speak it to my German friends and they would just laugh and laugh at how stupid I sounded. They really did try to help me learn it, though, and I miss saying “Ja” and “Tschüs!”, and trying to decode what they were saying. It was challenging, yeah, but I enjoyed it. I truly felt like I was kind of learning something, and it was the absolute best feeling in the world when they actually understood what I was saying.
These are just a few of the more material things I thought of. There was so much else that I loved, but it would take me forever to list everything out. I truly loved the European culture and can’t wait for my next trip abroad.
Over and out,