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The Germany Experience

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Life in Germany, as seen through the eyes of outsiders (previously called "Expat Life Germany").

Life in Germany, as seen through the eyes of outsiders (previously called "Expat Life Germany").




Life in Germany, as seen through the eyes of outsiders (previously called "Expat Life Germany").






Wurst/arsch/schwein idioms, why “Der/Die/Das” is weird, and sitting down to pee in Germany (Ricardo from Brazil & Ivan from Bulgaria)

Ricardo from Brazil and Ivan from Bulgaria are the people behind the Can You German? Instagram account. They met by chance in Germany, where they became friends. Later, when Ivan was stuck in Brazil due to COVID-19, they spent a lot of time together, and it was during this time that Can You German? was born. We discuss their Instagram page, why German is obsessed with idioms that have to do with sausage, ass, and pigs, and the culture shock for men when they learn that sitting down to pee...


Things to know before learning German (Elysse from Elysse Speaks)

Elysse is the host of Elysse Speaks, a YouTube channel about her experiences learning multiple languages (including sign language). One of the languages she speaks is German, and I invited her on the podcast to talk about German, what would have been good to know before learning German, and why learning German is like being in a complicated but cool relationship. Elysse's video that we base our discussion on: What I wish I knew BEFORE learning German Subscribe to Elysse's YouTube channel:...


The attraction of Munich, the versatility of “Doch!”, and environmentalism in Germany (Sarah from Canada)

Sarah from Canada came to Munich 4 years ago to get her Masters degree. At first the plan was to stay two years (which at the time she felt was too long). But soon she fell in love with Munich and found many reasons to stay. Sarah discusses those reasons with me, as well as how she went about learning German, the magic of the word, "Doch", and her observations of environmentalism in Germany. Sarah also hosts a podcast about international life with a focus on relationships called Falling...


German youth words of 2020 (Nina from Germany)

Every year, the Langenscheidt publishing house searches for the youth word of that year. It's happening again, and Nina from Germany (who previously appeared in the Fasching episode back in February) helps me explain the words and the memes behind them. We also try and figure out if the youth actually uses these words... The words we discuss: Schabernack, Mittwoch, Sauftrag, Wild, Lost, Köftespiess, Digga, Cringe, and Mashallah Some links to things we mention in the...


Germany and climate change (Patrick Niedermayer from Germany)

For foreigners living in Germany, you might be thinking that you live in a country that is doing a lot to combat global warming. After all, Germany signed the Paris Agreement, and it put together the Klimapaket (climate package). But according to my guest this week, Patrick Niedermayer, Germany isn't doing enough. This episode is a deep dive into what climate change is, what Germany has done (and why it isn't sufficient), and what foreigners living in Germany can do about the...


BONUS - Recent German history, and escaping East Berlin by pretending to be a swan (Emma from the USA)

In this outtake from my interview with Emma from the USA, we discuss recent German history, and how to win freedom by pretending to be a swan. Follow Emma on Instagram JOIN THE THE GERMANY EXPERIENCE FACEBOOK GROUP Visit the official The Germany Experience website Contact me:


Emma dances here (Emma from the USA)

Emma is a dancer who moved from New York City to Berlin. Even though Berlin is a big city, she still has to adjust to the slower pace of life here. She also discusses why there is more freedom to be adventurous with your career in Germany, why Germany is attractive to performing artists, the Visa that allows her to be here, and what you gain when you open yourself up to learning a new language. Follow Emma on Instagram. The 639 year organ musical composition:...


Everything changes all the time: finding your place in Germany (Shaked from Israel)

Shaked moved from Tel Aviv, Israel, to Germany to take the next step in her dance career: a move to dance management or production. But does she want to leave the actual dancing aspect behind? And how can she adapt when the German city she lives in doesn't necessarily give her the career opportunities she is looking for? Shaked talks us through the crossroads that she finds herself at now. We also discuss having a German partner as a portal into German culture, and how the Israeli culture...


RERUN: Living abroad teaches us the power of connections (Anna from Canada)

Originally released on September 4th, 2019 (episode #14). Anna Noakes Schulze from Canada presented a TEDx talk called “Living Abroad Teaches Us the Power of Connections”, and in it she tells her own expat story to demonstrate how those that we make connections with shape our lives and who we are, even if we don't live near them. This will resonate with many expats, and so I invited her to come on the show. In this interview, she expands on the TEDx talk to reveal her wisdom and insights...


RERUN: Discussing German stereotypes with Nicole from The Expat Cast

Originally released on October 20th, 2019 (episode #20). Are Germans really efficient? Do they like order? Are they as punctual as everyone says they are? Nicole, a US expat living in Germany and the host of The Expat Cast, helps me confirm or bust common stereotypes and cliches about Germans. Find Nicole: The Expat Cast podcast The Expat Cast on Instagram Mail Nicole: JOIN THE GERMANY EXPERIENCE FACEBOOK GROUP Visit the official The Germany Experience...


RERUN: Teaching English, Learning Languages, and Raising Bilingual Children in Germany (Lori from USA)

Originally released on July 2nd, 2019 (episode #6). Lori from USA has been teaching English in Germany for almost 40 years, so it’s not surprising that she has a thing or two to say about learning new languages. In fact, her language pedigree goes back to even before she moved to Germany, when she was a German high school teacher in the States. In this interview, Lori’s wisdom and wit shine through as she discusses how she got started teaching in Germany at a Volkshochschule, how speaking...


An update on my hospital visit, and audio logs from my hospital room

I spent two nights in hospital recently, and during my stay, I recorded several audio logs about my experience. You can hear them in this bonus episode. Since I won't be able to edit the podcast while I recover, I will be putting out some 2019 episodes over the next few weeks. Thank you to everyone who has messaged me well-wishes! JOIN THE THE GERMANY EXPERIENCE FACEBOOK GROUP Visit the official The Germany Experience website.


German culture: The top 10 selling musical artists in Germany (Craig from Scotland)

In order to better understand the music tastes of Germans, Craig from Scotland joins me to look at the top 10 selling musical artists in Germany. This includes German and international acts who have sold the most albums since the BVMI started certifying albums back in 1975. You can find the list on Wikipedia. To better get to know the German acts on this list, I put together a YouTube and Spotify playlist: Top German acts playlist on YouTubeTop German acts playlist on SpotifyThe bands and...


African abroad (Tania from Kenya)

Tania was born in Kenya and has lived in five different African countries. After a short time in Thailand, she’s landed up in Germany, and she feels like this is somewhere she can stay for a longer time. Some of the reasons for this include feeling safer in Germany than in Kenya, and having the safety net of social help that is available in Germany. And yet, despite her contentment in Germany, her heart still belongs to Kenya. Talking with Tania, it’s clear that Kenya is still very much a...


Sandals and socks, making friends with Germans, and "selfishly" staying in Germany (Amy from the USA)

Amy always had a dream of living in Germany, and even happened to marry someone who felt the same way. So living here has kind of been a dream come true. And generally, Amy is really happy here -- she admits that she was "right" about wanting to live here. But making friends with Germans is one aspect that has been a challenge. Amy is sociable and outgoing, and has done everything you're supposed to do to integrate yourself: take part in local events, be open, and seek out social...


Just a diplomatic spouse (Alexandra from Romania)

Being the spouse of a diplomat comes with a very specific lifestyle: you move around a lot, you don't stay in a country for long, and you never know where you'll be moved to next. Alexandra Paucescu is a Romanian married to a diplomat, and she has been based in Germany for several years. We discuss what a day in her life is like, whether or not she regrets giving up a management career for her current role, how she suffered from mild depression in her early time in Germany, and also gives...


Singing schlager music in Germany, and misogyny in the music industry (Sarah Jane Scott from the USA)

Sarah Jane Scott is an American who has had success as a Schlager singer in Germany. But how does an English-speaking "Ausländer" become a Schlager star? Sarah Jane explains her path to Germany and her Schlager success, talks about what it’s like to be a Schlager singer, and about how she is currently evaluating her next steps. We go into the unhealthy record label/artist relationship, and talk about systemic misogyny and exploitation in the music industry. Sarah Jane Scott's Instagram:...


A southern liberal in Germany, running a coffee shop, and casual German racism (Christy from the USA)

Christy is a southern liberal who opened a coffee shop in Germany. Over a Pfälzer Weinschorle, she discusses how she tried to integrate herself the “right” way, how Germany is not the best country for special needs children, not going back to the States for 10 years, and how Germans are racist in a “I didn’t mean anything by it” kind of way. We also talk about her coffee shop. Find Christy on Instagram: ChristyTheExpat and Durian fruit causes evacuation of a post office:...


Trilingualism, switching between languages, and Italian words adopted by German (Carmen from Italy)

Carmen is a trilingual Italian living in Munich, Germany. She speaks Italian, German and English fluently, and joins me to discuss her path to becoming trilingual, how she balances three languages, and the effects of learning multiple languages on her native language. We also talk about Italian words that German has adopted - and subsequently used in different ways to the original Italian meanings. Carmen also hosts two podcasts. She has an Italian one called Crucchi o Terroni siamo tutti...


The 5 phases of culture shock (Beth from the USA)

Beth from the USA moved to Germany to be with her husband, and she found that her adjustment period resembled the 5 stages of culture shock very closely. We talk about how she dealt with each stage, and where she is now on the curve. We also talk about how fencing is actually the perfect coronavirus sport. And, her cat makes an appearance. Read the blog post that we reference in the interview: The 5 phases of culture shock and how to go through smoothly Follow Beth on Instagram. Links to...