What I Dislike About Germany
I’ve been in Deutschland for almost 6 months now and it’s about time I started disliking some things! Right?! No place is perfect (maybe). Unfortunately, I haven’t immersed myself very thoroughly in the political or legal arenas so I don’t have many opinions there. So I guess I’ll get right into it!
- There are few homes with clothes dryers in them. I don’t have one right now. I miss banging out a load of laundry in 2 hours. It’s annoying to have to wait 12+ hours for your favorite black jeans to be ready so you can go to Berghain. I can’t deal with all this foresight! UGH! But admittedly, hanging one’s clothes is not that bad. One benefit I am seeing is that my clothes stay the same size.
- Paying to use a public toilet. Many public restrooms have either a cleaning person outside asking for money or a full-on-super-machine-toilet-jail-enforcer, which requires you to have EXACTLY 50 cents and only accepts 50 cent coins AND doesn’t give change back. :/ BITCH, I GOT TO TAKE A SHIT, AIGHT?! A HEAVY URGENT MEATY BRATWURST SHIT!! You just gotta hold it or take a shit on the sidewalk I guess.
- No “default” water at restaurants. You either have to explicitly ask for tap water or in the case that they “don’t have it” (yup, happened to me), you have to pay out your asshole for a 0,33L (tiny) bottle of water. I get that this is not just a German thing. I had the same experience in Spain. But still, I’d like to be hydrated.
- Grocery stores don’t take credit cards. Honestly, this isn’t such a big deal for me, but recently I am waiting for some money to come to me from the US and would like to buy food so I can continue living.
- THE COLD. Another “not-just-Germany” problem, but it’s definitely a thing and I definitely am not a fan. The winter this year was even really mild AND I still was dying. I guess it’s the price you pay to live in a cool (lolololololol) place. I’m missing that SLO climate! I mean, it’s nice to live in a place where the weather alone can’t kill you, right?
- Privacy Paranoia. This is something that I noticed right away. Many Germans that I’ve met are *super *cautious with what they share and put online. Many of my German friends have fake names on Facebook. One doesn’t have a Google account at all (WOW). When Facebook bought Whatsapp, a few friends dropped the service completely. Like, I get it kind of. For me 1) the convenience of these major services outweighs any privacy concern and 2) I don’t think these companies abuse my data. Advertisements based on things I like? Sounds good to me. Predictive search and intelligent personal assistants like Google Now based on my online behavior. Cool. Unfortunately, we have to find a way to deal with entities like the NSA subverting encryption systems that would be protecting our data. Everyone to the darknet then? That doesn’t make sense right now. (…trying to avoid writing a treatise on internet privacy)
But seriously, the things with the water and the toilets are my biggest pet peeves. Every basic thing seems to be handled so well here — food is way cheap, healthcare is pretty well-organized, education is free or *incredibly inexpensive *(e.g. a few hundred euros a semester at the university), and importantly recreation/fun/party are first-class citizens. Given all this, the effort required to have a glass of water or take a shit seems way too high.
See something you want to change? Submit a proposal via Github.