1. Most Germans go to the bakery every morning to buy fresh breads and pastries for breakfast.
2. Germans have small refrigerators in their apartments or houses.
3. Germany is very hilly, that sometimes you feel like you’re walking up and down an incline.
4. After work, Germans go to the market to pick up things for dinner everyday.
5. Besides being a pork culture, Germany is a very beer and chocolate culture.
6. Breakfast consists of meats, cheeses, breads, Nutella, jams, coffee, tea and fruit.
7. Not every region of Germany has the same foods. For example: In Baden-Wurttemberg, Maultaschan, which consist of a mixture of beef and pork in ravioli like dish, is a common dish that people eat. However, in North-Rhine Westphalia, that dish is not common. Lederwurst, sauerbraten and blutwurst are the foods that people eat in that region.
8. English, French and Russian are common languages that children learn in schools.
9. Markets are closed on Sundays because that is the day of leisure and relaxation.
10. Alcohol and beer is sold is mostly every market. There are not separate or specialty stores for just alcohol, wine and beer.
11. In markets, there are aisles just for CHOCOLATE!!!
12. Germans love to feed you.
Those are some of the interesting facts that I noticed about Germany while being living with my host family in Dusslingen and observing the students and teachers at school. I have to say that is has been a wonderful experience living with my host family and exploring the Germany. My host family welcomed me open arms and open hearts. It was wonderful being a part of their family for more than a week. I feel like I gained a German family. Jasmin went out of her way to make feel comfortable and accepted as her mother did as well. Even though we would start most of our days at 5 am in the morning, it was worth it. It gave me time to observe and absorb the culture.
Along with being at the schools in the mornings, our afternoons where filled with walking tours of different neighborhoods in Stuttgart, visits to Tubingen and Metzingen, Ludwicksburg Castle, Art Galleries, vi to Munich and more. It was amazing being able to do explore and do those things while being in Germany because it gave me a chance to learn and appreciate the culture. I love how friendly and welcoming the Germans are.
One of the things that we did this past weekend was visit Dachau’s Concentration Camp Memorial Site. Being there tugged at my heart strings because no matter how many times I think I learned all that I needed to learn about the Holocaust, there is so still so much the learn. Being there was an experience that made me very humble and to experience the pain that millions of Jewish people and others went through. To this day I will never understand why killing and torturing people of a different ethnicity was okay. Walking through the bunkers, crematorium, roll call line where the prisoners had to line up and entrance to the camp was very surreal to me. I had to give myself to take it all in.
As I was thinking of my visit at the concentration camp, it made me feel very fortunate that I’m going to be a teacher someday because I will educate children of all races, ethnicities, socioeconomic statuses and backgrounds. One of the very important things I hope to impart on my students are acceptance, respect and tolerance for everybody. If I can touch students that way besides teaching the basics and fundamentals then I know that they will be alright in this world and grow up to be very open minded and successful citizens.
My experience in Germany has been very educational, exciting, fulfilling and positive. Did I mention how delicious the food is? I cannot get enough of kasespatzle, schnitzel and maultaschan. I enjoyed myself very much. However, my trip is not over. Right now I am in Bonn with my friend Laura. I am staying at her apartment for a week. She has a lot of adventures in store in me. I will post a blog a about my experience in Bonn sometime next week.
Until we meet again, Tschuess!!
P.S. I will post pictures to all of my blogs sometime later on today.