3 Comments

  1. Stewart
    January 4, 2015 @ 12:37 pm

    Excellent information! Just one small correction – Caipirinhas are Brazilian not Argentinian!

    Reply

    • Drop Me Anywhere
      January 4, 2015 @ 2:04 pm

      You are correct, sir! I must have had too much Glühwein when I wrote that. I will fix it so as not to spread misinformation.

      Reply

    • Frank
      January 5, 2015 @ 2:09 am

      Nice summarization and links, thank you.

      While we’re at proofreading, obviously, please let me count two beans: it’s “Deutsche Oper” (die Oper = the opera) and “Funkturm” (der Turm = the tower, Funkturm = radio tower).

      As for volunteering in Berlin, there are indeed, and somewhat unfortunately, MANY projects and initiatives – and they are quite easy to find, although many of them are in German, of course.

      Before I give you a couple of links, please let me state that many critical thinkers deem this overboarding volunteering and charity “culture” here as part of the so-called further “Americanization” of the social fabric in Germany. What once were definitely characteristics of a social welfare state, are now increasingly becoming tasks for private citizens.

      Like taking care of socially disadvantaged children, of the elderly, of poor people, etc., even handing out food to them (“Die Tafel”). That’s absolutely disgusting, further promoting both poverty and disadvantages – because these volunteers and interns (“Generation Praktikum”) are, in essence and for the most part, doing jobs they – or even better: professionally trained people – should be decently paid for. They – and society in its entirety, apart from the wealthy top class, of course – will pay the price for this in the future, no doubt about that. Old-age poverty (“Altersarmut”) because of not being paid for work is just one thing to consider.

      The German government has obviously no problems whatsoever shelling out obscene numbers of billions of Euros to banksters and foreign countries, yet constantly cuts down deep on the welfare of its needy citizens. Hiring unpaid “volunteers” or even forcing unemployed people into sort of unpaid internships or “one-euro jobs” is their solution to give more money to the greedy and the rich.

      Work that is deemed important enough to be done in society should be paid for. Period.

      Btw, some of the info people you encounter at train stations or major bus stops here are forced by the government into these “measures”, maybe that’s in part why they are not always as friendly as trained Disney employees.

      Yes, sometimes (social) life here is certainly different from what the fine brochures and colorful websites of VisitBerlin or other PR organizations run by the German or Berlin government are trying to sell to you tourists…

      A couple of exemplary links for voluntary work in Berlin
      in English:
      http://www.givesomethingbacktoberlin.com
      http://www.betterplace.org/en/portals/berlin
      in German:
      http://www.berlin.de/buergeraktiv/

      On the topic of German men not picking up things women dropped: If you did that, i. e. pick their dropped stuff up, you’d run the risk of being accused of gender discrimination. “How do you dare, I can manage completely on my own!” So unless a lady explicitly asks for it, at least by unambiguously speaking body language, a man here is usually unlikely to help women with the doors or with their coats or with their droppings, etc. Women are considered absolutely equal and you don’t wanna mess with that and getting called a macho. Politeness or chivalry are two-edged swords in this context. And who wants to hurt himself? Or was Women’s Lib about cherry-picking??? *lol*

      Reply

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