nostalgia weekend trip
this weekend shifted my focus from the future, back to the past. i finally skyped with a friend from college after figuring out the time zone difference and went to a party where i ended up chatting with folks i hadn’t seen in 7 years. usually when that much time passes with folks back home at least one person has gotten depressingly obese. but here everyone looked like the relatively trim and fit high paced travellers that they were attempting to become back then. same folks, different european capital.
there was this one man that i remembered as a huge block of a person, a less green and less jolly giant, always standing with his arms crossed and yelling something like a german lou ferrigno. this was obviously just a figment of my imagination. he didn’t yell and he was perfectly reasonable and sociable. he wasn’t even that big.
during one awkward conversation with a non-giant, i stared dourly at the silence, after the previous speaker confided that she really feels like she fits in here in berlin and how it’s wonderful for the children. later i talked to her other half who revealed that this fitting in meant absorption into the berlin french community.
i found it interesting that:
people are able to talk about such things with an air of neutrality.
those discussions will never inspire the tiniest thought about or the widest parallel to leitkultur or separate societies.
certain french accents and incorrect declination denote charm yet another accent with correct grammar can be used to rate intelligence.
finding people of a similar background, who speak the same language, and send their children to schools that also teach this language are in this case a wonderful and positive thing. and it’s then called fitting in. really well.
i think i would seek therapy if i ever started feeling that i fit in anywhere in germany, excluding perhaps tegel. departures.