Living Abroad – 5 Things I Miss the Most from Germany

Bäckerei_in_Bielefeld-Jöllenbeck

No matter how often or long you have lived abroad, you will always be connected to your roots, which will eventually lead to homesickness, no matter how hard you fight it.

Even though I am living abroad since 8 years, I do miss certain things from Germany. Let me tell you what that is!

Bakeries

I love fresh bread, pastry, and cakes so much. No wonder that I miss the German bakeries. There is nothing better than the smell when entering a bakery or grabbing fresh bread for Sunday morning brunch.

Here in Ireland bakeries don’t exist. You will only find “bakeries” in the back of supermarkets like Tesco or Lidl. Definitely not the same experience!

German Bakery

Public Transport

Germany has a great infrastructure and it is super easy to get from A to B, no matter if by bus, train, tram, car or whatever. The public transport is pretty reliable, easily accessible and affordable.

Here in Ireland you cannot always be sure that the bus is coming, and certainly not at the scheduled time. It is always a gamble and you are better off being on the bus stop early in case 1-2 busses did not show up. At least, if you have to be punctual.

Also the bus stops are not really announced, so you often have to tell the bus driver to inform you when to get off, unless you know how the bus stop looks already or follow your GPS on Google Maps on your phone.

German train – die Bahn

Brunch

There seems to be different kind of definitions when it comes to “Brunch”. In many countries brunch means to eat breakfast a bit later, around 11am-12pm.

In my definition it means to have an all you can eat buffet and start around 9-10am until even 2pm or as long as you feel like. Basically, you are eating all day and don’t just order one dish and leave.

Brunch Buffet in Germany

Safety

Germany is a pretty save country, not only in terms of crime, but also when it comes to the social security. There is a statutory health insurance, unemployment benefits, housing benefits, retirement benefits and much more.

You never have to be afraid that you will be homeless at some point, or unable to seek medical help. The government provides everything.

It’s different here in Ireland. I pay for each visit to the doctor individually and there is only a certain amount of unemployment benefit. Plus, it is no obligation to have a health insurance.

Christmas Traditions

I really miss certain Christmas traditions from Germany, especially since I have been part of them for 20 years of life. So they are deeply anchored. Let me tell you 3!

Christmas Calendars

At the end of November we are always given Christmas Calendars with 24 doors. One door to open each day until Christmas. The traditional Christmas Calendar is filled with one piece of chocolate per day.

However, nowadays lots of companies make use of this tradition and fill those with their products. You will find perfume, cosmetics, food, even dog Christmas calendars. There is no limit for creativity.

It is also very common to make and fill them yourself in order to give it a more personal touch!

Self Made Christmas Calender

Nikolaus

On the 6th of December Nikolaus is coming. What does that mean? On the 5th of December you are supposed to clean your shoes and put them outside the door. If you have been good throughout the year and cleaned your shoes, they will be filled with treats. If not, then you will find a rod.

You will laugh, but even though I am almost 30, my family keeps practicing this tradition and I still put my clean shoes in front of the door every year.

Filled shoes on Nikolaus in Germany

Christmas Markets

I really miss Christmas Markets from Germany. You will find lots of stalls selling food, drinks, crafts and much more. My favourite drink is mulled wine of course, and I really love to eat Bretzel, Langos and Sausages.

Every city will have their own Christmas market or even more than one, if it is bigger cities. I really like the on in Erfurt (my home town), Cologne and Hamburg.

Christmas Market in Germany
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