Franconia Beer Message Board

Way OT: Love of Europe & Life
Posted by Nick B. (formerly in Erlangen) on 2019-06-12 23:43:59
Nice to learn that about you, Mark. If you don't mind my saying so, it's a bit of a surprise, that you had the interest in Europe prior to being bitten by the beer bug. I wouldn't say that I was the opposite, but I never thought about *visiting* here until my thirties, when I had already been bitten by the Belgian beer bug...our first trips over were to Belgium & the NL...is that other discussion board still active, I wonder?

As I got more and more worked up about politics (!) around the turn of the century, our move to Europe came at a very nice time. Once we got over here, I managed to detach completely from American politics. I suddenly couldn't be bothered to care about it any more. That served to be a big ... relief. It was facilitated in big part by complete immersion in learning the language and making friends and contacts over here.

And no American TV. German TV is fantastic in comparison, especially for those learning the language. The history of German TV is sort of opposite to that of American, with it having started out as a state-funded thingie, more or less. Think of having regional, well-funded PBS channels first, with the likes of ABC, CBS, NBC, et al, having only sprung up since the 70s (right Gerhard?) with the advent of cable. Documentaries up the ying-ying. Even the amateur cooking shows are done seriously...like Come Dine With Me done seriously without hijinks.

Not like any of youse would spend your time sitting around in front of the tube if you moved here. Though...you might spend some, eventually. Once you turn 40 or so, moving house and making friends becomes more challenging. My German teacher, Marc, my age, told me that. I was 39 when we moved here, and the friends I left behind in OR were all basically beer drinking and homebrewing friends. And I'd only been living there for 11 years, spread over three different locations. My point is, I've moved around a lot, my whole life, even going back to childhood. I don't have even any friends left from high school, save one, and I've not been in contact with him in over 20 years.

What I'm leading up to, Mark, is, it's good that you're grateful for your situation. It sounds wonderful, except for being surrounded by M@ssh0le$ all the time. (Joke...I like New Yorkers and New Englanders more than most other Americans; they have their own distinct ways of being, unique among Americans.)

The west has the landscapes and geography, the east has the best people. Though, last year, I had occasion to get to know and spend time with quite a few people from "the jungle" of south central Los Angeles. If you'd told me two years ago that I would go from being a married, 50-something part-time English teacher in Germany, to being a friend and companion of economically dis-advantaged young single mothers from Rodney King's neighborhood, I'd have thought you were a looney.

Also being befriended by hardened career criminals and sitting in a notorious jail for 2-1/2 weeks...that was a surprise. A learning experience. Humbling. Not as humbling as nearly dying from pneumonia though. Germany is a good place to get sick and land in hospital. They typically send an actual doctor out with an ambulance, also in a seperate car. The food though...I need to write up a report on my experience with hospital food and nutritionists.

Friends and family are nice to have. I'm slogging through a lack of both at the current time, but it's kind of how I grew up. Onward and upward. Mid-life crises!

I'm sticking here for a while, at least through the autumn. Life in the US is too...Koyaanisqatsi. Have to find a new career though, and one downside to German life is their tendency to view 50 as the cutoff age for hireability. I could theoretically go back to programming, but it's been 15 years. I'm a bit too young to "retire".

Back to your Thursday morning...

 
 
Followups:
               Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Mark Andersen on  2019-06-13 07:14:26
                 Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by FredW on  2019-06-13 08:45:41
                   Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Barry Taylor on  2019-06-14 05:01:01
                     Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by AndyH on  2019-06-17 02:01:39
                 Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Nick B. (formerly in Erlangen) on  2019-06-19 01:08:03
                       Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Nick B. (formerly in Erlangen) on  2019-06-19 01:14:53
                   Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Mark Andersen on  2019-06-19 03:38:59
                     Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Nick B. (formerly in Erlangen) on  2019-06-19 05:21:44
                   Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Chris Kaine on  2019-06-19 19:12:11
                     Way OT: Love of Europe & Life by Nick B. (formerly in Erlangen) on  2019-06-20 03:39:28
                       Way OT: BTW... by Nick B. (formerly in Erlangen) on  2019-06-20 03:42:05
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