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About Tammodar

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  • Location Stuttgart
  • Nationality british and german
  1. How integrated are you?

    I have no idea how other people perceive me, but I feel quite well integrated. Back in 1983 when I first came to Germany as a student in order to learn a bit of the language, I had no intention of staying for more than 10 months. In the end I must have liked the experience because I decided to stay on another year. And then another. After my studies, the student job magically drifted into full time employment. In 1987 I married a German woman and thought I was happy - at least for the time being.  In the early 90s I had a bit of an early mid-life crisis and felt I was loosing touch with my roots, my culture, my heritage and language. I reached out to other ex-pats, mostly from the UK, and we debated for hours on end about all the pros and cons of living in Germany, about separating rubbish and red lights and impolite behaviour, and we all drank far too much beer in the process. Most of the other ex-pats have left Germany over the years. After my divorce in 1992 and almost ten years in Germany I seriously considered moving on to some other country, to see something else and learn a new language as long as I was still young and energetic enough.  France was on the top of the list at the time, but today I cannot understand why.  Somehow I managed to come to terms with Germany, or was simply too lazy to sell off everything, pack my bags, and move on.  In 1995 I did the C2 German language test, not because I needed it, but just as a sort of challenge. I've always enjoyed learning languages and still do today.  My German will never be perfect, but I feel very comfortable in almost any situation and enjoy reading books and newspapers (Die Zeit) in German. Suddenly and unexpectedly the year 2003 came upon me with the realisation that I had already spent twenty years in Germany, almost half of my life. In 2005 I applied for German citizenship, long before Brexit was a serious issue. Nowadays my entire social and work-related environment is German speaking and I seldom have the opportunity or need to speak English.  In the mean time I have remarried and bought a house - and have never felt more happy and at ease in my life. Now, after nearly forty years in Germany, I think I would find re-adjusting to life in the UK very difficult.  It's a diffrent country today and I have changed as well. Oddly enough, my wife has more ties to the UK than I do, although she is German. So, am I integrated?