I know it’s a blog about the Germans but what about turning the tables and writing down my impressions as a German speaker about the three months that I spent in London. I've got a notion that within a short period of time I saw quite a lot, probably a bit of everything from the entire world culture. Why do I say this? Because you have just a huge choice here and plenty of different possibilities to do something. No matter what, from museums (where you can push buttons or hear figures explaining world history ... amazing for children, to learn by playing). Musicals, theatre, classical music (and every day in summer, the Proms ), concerts, galleries.
Not to forget the British Library which is not a usual Library. I had the opportunity to do work experience here which was wonderful. I saw how the processing of the books works, the history and the architecture of the building. The people working there have a lovely sense of humour. And I have to recommend the tour of the BL. It’s different – not as boring as some guided tours can be. I have always been interested in books but after this time here I’m going to buy probably over 100 books. (More than I had in mind). Some of them that I had a quick look in, are too good to miss. My father would definitely approve. I'm going to have many demands on my purse (a poor student like me). But as everybody knows; knowledge is expensive (Oxford, Cambridge…).
Oh and what I nearly forgot, the most famous thing that everybody speaks about is probably the weather, because it is so changeable like nowhere else. And to mention the food there is a restaurant near where I stayed in Finchley which has the best fish and chips ever. (Madonna used to go there as well.) There are markets that are as long as the whole Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich . You have parks, you can’t have more green than this. Ok maybe in Scotland… but you know what I mean: you don’t have to go on vacation, it’s not necessary. You have everything here. (I’ve been to Brighton three times.) Lucky you!
Anyway most of the culture related things are for free. I'm perhaps too enthusiastic but I had a really good time. Also impressive is your recycling system. We are probably one of the cleanest countries in the world but we still haven’t a separate recycling system for plastic cups. Stuff like that is general waste in Switzerland.
I think there is something about London and I will come back that's for sure. At the very end I'm left saying: it was a really exciting, interesting time and what stuck out was the friendly nature and the helpfulness of the people everywhere. And this constantly (apart from some bus drivers but that’s another story...)
However I never felt like a foreigner. It was worth the trip.
Arbi Jusufi (Intern in the German Section, July/August 2010)