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About alexunterwegs

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  • Location Hamburg
  • Nationality British
  1. How to avoid a serious tipping mistake

    So what? You can expand on that principle to tip the entire kitchen staff. There are loads of jobs where people 'behind the scenes' contribute to a business, but it comes back to the owners underpaying in the first place, and then expecting that tippers will pick up the slack. 
  2. How to avoid a serious tipping mistake

    Back on the subject of tipping in bars and restaurants, I operate on the principle that if a waiter/ess has brought it to my table, they deserve a tip if done relatively speedily. However, I never tip when I order myself at a bar, even though amazingly many Germans seem to find it quite normal. I fail to see how staff standing behind a bar are offering anything other than routine service.    At the same time, I think customers being served at tables is part of the deal to encourage them to give tips. Bit of a racket really on the part of owners. Just encourages them to underpay their staff.     
  3. Most/least friendly areas of Germany

    Interesting article.  And I learned about NY "sass" as well.    I expect I'd be on the receiving end should  I choose not to give any Trinkgeld! 
  4. Most/least friendly areas of Germany

      What is the Berliner Schnauze? Is it being loud and opinionated?  I haven't lived in Berlin, but have visited frequently and my impression is that they have a good sense of humour (by German standards!).  They remind me a bit of cockneys.  Obviously I understand that like lots of capital cities, it has attracted all sorts of people of many origins, so I'm referring to authentic Berliners born and bred. 
  5. Most/least friendly areas of Germany

    One thing I've discovered is that the Hamburgers reputation for keeping a distance with strangers is pretty much true. You never see spontaneous conversations at bus stops. In fact some seem to react with shock if someone starts talking.  (Actually pretty much ideal for Corona social distancing!)  The only way of getting to know people,outside of work, is through clubs or organisations or frequenting the same cafe over a period. When confronted with this, Hamburgers stock reply is that once you know one, then you have a friend for life!. They then go onto explain that Rhinelanders jolly cheerfulness and wanting to be mates is all superficial!  To some extent this keeping a distance, also called 'sturheid',  is also a North German thing.      I will say I have encountered scarcely any racism in Hamburg. This may be because being a large port, they are used to foreigners of all types.  Even though many of the seamans hostels have been replaced by third world refugees, they are very accomodating towards refugees.  The distant behaviour is not specifically directed to foreigners, they are the same with other Germans.    I would also say the Rheinlanders reputation as being out-going is largely true. It may have something to do with Carneval. Obviously if you land in a small village cafe for the first time, you will be viewed with a certain amount of suspicion, as you would elsewhere around the world, but in the towns and cities its easy to make contact with locals. Cologne, inside or outside of Carneval, especially.    
  6. Brexit: The fallout

    That's now. But wait until the problems, especially for British businesses,  start to sink in.  When these new trade deals elsewhere don't quite add up to the benefits of EU trade. I'm not saying the current diehard wackos in Downing Street will change, but they're not going to be there forever. 
  7. Brexit: The fallout

        The only long-term solution to the problem caused by Brexit for trade into Northern Ireland is either; a) Ireland exits the EU. or the UK re-negotiates membership of the Single Market and/or Customs Union, similar to Norway or Switzerland's position.    Ireland is not going to exit the EU. Anti-EU sentiment is way under 50% of the population and anyway, why should they solve the problem caused in Britain.    So the only viable solution is for the UK to re-join the SM and/or CU.  That would not be contrary to the Referendum vote, which was only about membership of the EU. Fundamentally it would remove a swathe of bureaucracy and redtape needed to cross a 'border' between the 2 markets, so the debate about should the border be a land one or in the Irish Sea, becomes largely irrelevant.   The EU would have to be willing to re-negotiate, and whilst I can see them grinding their teeth at the prospect, it would fundamentally be in theirs and everyone's interests.      
  8. Brexit: The fallout   So Dominic Cummings the 'mastermind' at the nerve centre of the Brexit campaign, thinks it 'might have been a mistake'.  Tells you all you need to know.  If he thinks it might have been a mistake,  you can pretty damn sure it was, given his reputation for spin and massaging facts.   
  9. Brexit: The fallout

      The parallel I was drawing with Brits living in Germany, is that when your roots are elsewhere you need be respectful of your host country, even if you've been living there for 60 years.   Thats got nothing to do with whether you entered the country under EU rules or not.  On certain issues,  I am certainly a bit restrained in lecturing to Germans about how things should be here, including who they should be allowing into the country. 
  10. Brexit: The fallout

        I'm talking about double standards. People who profit from a system and then turn the tables to make sure others can't do likewise. Priti Patel's place in British society is thanks to the tolerance shown to her parents. She needs to realise that and show a bit more tolerance herself.     On the subject of double standards, all of us from the UK living in Germany have profited from freedom of movement. As indeed have those of us based in Brussels!  We're not really in a strong position to lecture others on why they shouldn't want the same benefits for themselves of immigration, be they cultural or economic.    
  11. Brexit: The fallout

      You're starting to sound rather confused. I'm not the one who's trying to make Ms Patel sound liberal.  You're the one who suggested she might allow those Ugandan Asians to settle under her watch. And at the same time wanting something to be done about the French boat people.    
  12. Brexit: The fallout

      Oh I see, Priti Patel is the great ambassador for refugees.  Forgive me, but I must have misread that she was considering calling in the Navy to prevent refugees arriving in dinghies across the Channel.  Or maybe she couldn't establish there were enough of her family relatives involved. 
  13. Euro 2020 and 2021   This is the BBC's summary of what happened in and around Wembley on Sunday. Doesn't paint a good picture. Looks like the security was very poor. Could even have turned into a tragedy.  
  14. Euro 2020 and 2021   How several papers across Europe saw the fans' behaviour and how that effects the perception of our country. 
  15. Euro 2020 and 2021

      Yes, but we're focussing on the England fans because its EURO 20 and its happening now. That's the thread we're on.   If the Dutch fans were to go on a rampage in London, we've got a new discussion.  But as Luke points out, the Dutch national teams' fans have never caused problems in the UK. For English fans, its very obviously not the first time.    Sure the populist politicians and the tabloid media are a large part of antisocial behaviour displayed by fans, but fans have to take some responsibility. I've seen at least one article in the German press picking up on some of the idiot behaviour, and whilst that's sensationalist or lazy journalism, because it generalises over a whole swathe of people, its not good for the country's reputation. That can have a whole range of knock on effects going way beyond football. That's more political than if there's a bunch of idiots at a Championship or Bundesliga 2 match, because yesterday had an audience of tens of millions right across Europe.