Category Archives: Germany
Böll wrote prolifically about his city. I thought to turn to him for two thoughts about Cologne and what makes it distinct.
My American Saturdays began with a coffee and a crescendo of college football media. Blogs, Twitter, and ESPN College Gameday made for a surround-sound cacophony of predictions, punditry, and hot takes.
There’s a Dutch phrase about the Dom, my grandpa claims. “See the Cologne Cathedral and you can die.”
In the US, wearing sweatpants to the grocery store is an act of conformity. In Germany as in many other countries on the continent, it’s an act of rebellion.
I was satisfied in my decision. There was thrill in riding without a ticket. And I was convinced that what I was doing was right. I was in line with the spirit of the law, even if the law had no spirit.
Life as an expat can be categorized according to two phenomena: experiences that reinforce the expat’s sense of belonging to her heritage and experiences that point to a shift in identity.
Last fall, my much-delayed Megabus dropped me off in Chinatown at 2:30 a.m. I had seven percent battery life, four dollars in cash, and no idea how to get to Brooklyn.
I could almost hear his eyes glazing over. The remove in his voice suggested that the ocean between us was a puddle compared to the expanse between our brains.
In 2050, when the first histories of Germany’s integration project are written, the country will be graded on its efficacy in educating refugees in its native tongue.
How much further from home is the 40-year old tailor from Afghanistan who lacks the native words to ask for his family’s daily bread?