This is it

I’ve joked about it a few times and now it’s been reality for a good year already: my English husband officially became my English-German husband. After an eleven-month trekking trip through the jungle of application deadlines, waiting periods and scraping together of long-forgotten pieces of paper, Mr K is officially Herr K. For those of you with a Brexit-induced interest in self-Germanisation, here are some of our experiences… Weiterlesen

Die Krönung

Seit in Großbritannien für den Brexit gestimmt wurde, sind viele interessante Entwicklungen zu beobachten. Eine davon ist die gefühlt wieder auflebende Begeisterung für die berühmt-berüchtigte quirkiness („Schrulligkeit“) der Briten, allen voran der Royal Family. Filme wie „Paddington“ und Serien wie „The Crown“ erfreuen sich größter Beliebtheit. Hier sind ein paar unnütze Fakten über die British monarchy. Weiterlesen

The Mouse

Every country has its famous kids’ TV programmes. When I was in Gymnasium, one of my German teachers told the teenage class, much to the latter’s incredulous amusement, that his favourite TV programme of all times was Die Sendung mit der Maus, a kids’ show. Learn more about this ominous mouse and why it’s still all the rage today… Weiterlesen

Fresh fruit salad

One, two, three, four, Mary at the cottage door. Five, six, seven, eight, eating cherries off a plate. Thus goes an English nursery rhyme. But who picked the cherries Mary is innocently eating here? And do Germans pick cherries too? Read more on cherries and other proverbial fruit… Weiterlesen

Wetterkunde

Mein englischer Ehemann ist schon ganz genervt: Immer wenn er sagt, woher er kommt, erntet er von den Deutschen mitleidige Blicke und einen Kommentar über den vielen Regen in England. „In London regnet es viel weniger, als ihr denkt!“ ruft er dann stets verzweifelt gen Himmel. Was aber ist dran, an dem Mythos vom Engländer und dem Wetter? Weiterlesen

Advent adventure

As my fellow observer of the German culture Adam Fletcher writes in his new book How To Be German – Part 2, Christmas is serious business in Germany. And it all starts with the run-up to Christmas, which is Adventszeit (Advent season). There are certain things any self-respecting German should do. Here’s a bit of Adventiquette… Weiterlesen

Troubled transport

The other day I was working in Mainz, and a colleague on my team asked me if I had ‚mit der Bahn gekommen‚. Indeed I had. But what do Germans mean when they say Bahn? And where do ice trains come from or go to? Come and join me on a railway journey through the land of trrrävelling… Weiterlesen

Mushy speak

Among the many things that can cause confusion – generally in this world, but in particular to persons like many of yourselves, dear readers, who live in a country where the main language is not their mother tongue – are words that sound the same but mean something entirely different in two languages. Here’s why you should never bring a ‘gift’ to a German home. Weiterlesen

Don’t Fräulein me!

Recently, I watched Season 5 of Homeland. (In British English, it used to be “Series 5” – and while people still say this, the American version of Staffel is slowly taking over.) This latest series of Homeland (and in my personal view best one yet) being based in Berlin, I was flummoxed by a few rather striking blunders. Here’s what Homeland doesn’t get quite right about Germany. (Spoiler alert!) Weiterlesen

Strandurlaub

Wenn ich Freunden und Bekannten erzähle, dass ich nach England in den Sommerurlaub fahre, ernte ich oft mitleidige Blicke. England hat bei den Deutschen, vollkommen zu Unrecht, den Ruf, täglich mit Regen oder zumindest allenfalls unbeständigem Wetter aufzuwarten. Hier eine kleine Anleitung für diejenigen, die sich trotzdem trauen. Weiterlesen