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29 Aug 2013

Travel Report: Berlin

Posted by groupofchange

Berlin… so much to say… Although the union of the East and West Berlin has transformed the city in all its culture and daily lifestyle, Berlin protects its roots, its history and legacy as Germany’s current capital and the largest city. The old and new is distributed evenly inside the city so you can have many tastes according to your daily preference. If you want to go to a museum, there is a region for that. If you want to go for shopping, it is in another area of town. Everything is organized and categorized in the city so it is easy to find your way. On top of all that almost everyone knows good amount of English language so you can ask someone if you feel really lost or trying to figure your way out.

Germans are known for their industriousness, tidiness and especially punctuality. If you are late for 1 minute to a show or a meeting, that is “late” in Germany so be prompt when you’d like to attend an event, watch a show or a movie in the city.

While going around, one thing that attracted my attention was that especially fathers were main ones taking care of the babies, not the mothers. You can see a man in every corner which is carrying the baby, feeding, and even cleaning the baby. This was striking as I come from a culture where you see the opposite. The baby belongs to the mother, our Turkish culture imposes.

Talking about cultures, there are many Turks living in Berlin, so if you are coming to visit from Turkey, you can find many taxis and waiters and bus drivers who are Turkish therefore who speak Turkish-the few areas in the world where you can have that luxury for Turkish speaking:) However, the most problematic side which has true implications for Oneness concept is the relationship between Turkish and German inhabitants. While talking to the Turkish drivers, I heard from most of them that “there is still racism evident” in the streets of Berlin and that even with the 2nd generation Turks who are born and raised in Berlin, this unfortunately goes on. Coming to the other side, from the German’s side, you can see that Turks are behaving towards them as very “separate” too. This actually accelerates the “separation between both sides” and thus you have the picture of Oneness broken between two cultures.

Let’s look at what we have for the Oneness Behaviors in Berlin:

  1. Warmth by people towards foreigners-you can feel this as this is a metropolitan city so many are used to foreigners walking and shopping around.
  2. Helping behavior-you can surely get help if you ask, if you do not ask, you may or may not depending on who you run into.
  3. Not feeling as a foreigner inside the country-So so.
  4. Communicate with you for your needs and concerns-Depends on who you run into. This may not be true for every German you meet.
  5. All of us are treated as equals-Sometimes.

This makes a total of 3 points for Berlin.

With more Oneness to come in your way Berlin.

Kayla

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