German Absurdity: Only For Your Consideration


German Absurdity: Only For Your Consideration

My tolerance level has reached an all time low. I am extremely tired of minding the unwritten rules of this country. Following them have gotten me absolutely nowhere. Seriously, when I think long and hard about abiding and assimilating all it has done is worsen my dilemma. Everyone I am supposed to be modeling myself after does nothing of the sort. They just go about life pushing, shoving, hindering and staring at others who are earnestly trying. It is beyond culture shock for me albeit its been four fucking years. I also know my sentiments are heavily influenced by back home as well as resetting my life every 14 to 30 days in this never-ending lockdown. I am torn between a country going to shit due to the lack of rules conflicting with over enforcement and a country where everyone does whatever they want under the guise of respectability. So when I psyche myself out to leave the comfort of my home and face all of this aggression and dismissiveness I really wish I was anywhere but here. 

I have been in and out of doctors offices ever since I arrived in Deutschland. I think I'm allergic to her. In my first visit I realized two things - never expect to be seen with any immediacy and don't expect people to be kind because you are ill. How can anyone expect to be triaged according to their type of illness or level of pain if every medical facility is ran like a soup kitchen. Just show up and we will get to you when we get to you. I have tried everything to avoid this and was told I could avoid this. Literally, every language course teaches you how to make an appointment. They have this scripted call you can make your own when reaching out to a physician. Well that script has never worked in any language. Most of the places do not answer their calls. If they do answer, they refuse to actually give you an appointment. They somewhat scold you for not just walking in. It is hard to figure this rhythm out at first and you expect it to change once you become a patient of record or if you have illness that requires urgency. You know out of the gate hospitals are not a solution here. You also know you cannot self treat yourself outside of vitamins and tea. Sometimes you just need to be seen but you also what that guarantee of being seen ... and heard. So lining up with all these other people expecting the same thing is just a waste of time. I thought the pandemic would dead this practice in the water. Well, it has only gotten worse. These offices are taking no appointments, they don't take any calls and they have removed the chairs and coatracks to make it more ... comfortable? If the idea is to keep the suspicion of who has Covid and its spread to a minimum while in the waritezimmer why not just offer appointments? I guess that would too easy for Germans. 

We already know that Germans have no concept of queuing. I might even apply that to all Europeans. I mean living in Florida we know how Europeans act when given a line to stand in. They automatically believe they have some secret access to the front and will do everything in their power to get there. The excuse is always that they were unaware of whatever wait or rules. I was told to expect for Germans to be unnecessarily pushy about the length or progress of a line. That they just don't want to wait and will look for opportunities to skip others waiting or walk past whatever is obviously in place. I figured that would be a chance for me to be the person I never could be in America. I mean you do shit like they do here you will get into an altercation or get shot. Yet I found it such a relief to not have to speak to people and just walk in front of them in a grocery store or demand service ahead of those who can't seem to get it together. I did until it began to happen to me. The market stuff sometimes I cannot help but the idea that someone waiting is distracted or too needy so that gives me just cause is plain rude. So when possible I try to make whatever line, follow the rules or just wait my turn. I would love to do that without someone invading my personal space, attacking me for doing so or doing the exact opposite which prevents me from doing my part. But here that is impossible. 

So back to appointments. Well before the pandemic, the Netherlands booked time slots and visiting time windows almost every attraction. They did this for two reasons, first because everything is way too small for random crowds and lastly because they want visitors to have a good experience. Germany just doesn't see the point in this. It doesn't occur to anyone in this great, efficient nation that people are having a terrible time going about life in these cramped, overpopulated cities. Sure, Americans leave their shopping carts in the middle of aisles and we are waiting four and five hours to vote. Yeah, do not take notes from us there. But it is very rare you go to a doctors office and find sick people standing on top of each other. You don't see people being turned away at the movie theater for lack of seats. You don't have adults stand in front of children at parades to collect a lifetime supply of candy. You don't have people rushing you at the damn grocery store because their need for pur yogurt and tofu is right fucking now. We have a way of communicating to others if we have urgencies or are in a relaxed mode. We have avenues of being taken care of medically that assess our needs in a timely fashion. We do not like being rude or having people be rude to us for no reason. Above all no one in any role wants their time wasted and we want good, proper experiences from having a meal to getting ones dry cleaning. We just do not understand the constant need to do the worst fucking job you can or treat people as poorly as you can fathom. There generally is no reason or excuse to act like that. If you go about life like that we deem you as having a fucking issue and to be avoided. That goes for individuals and businesses.

Wasting of time is paramount here. It all boils down to it and its aggravating because all Germans ever say is how efficient they are. How efficient is it to have no virtual or digital means for medical records, prescriptions, immigration services or as of late mass vaccinations? How is cash and EC karte only still the most accepted option in a world of contactless payments? Why on Earth are we snail mailing pertinent documents when we've had consumer level faxing and email for thirty years? I needed an emergent appointment at a specialist. Of course that required me to go back to my Hauspraxis for an uberweisung that I would hand carry to the other physician. Then he had a bright idea of faxing another facility so I could been seen immediately. We were to await their call to schedule that urgent appointment. Two weeks went by and then a letter arrived in the mail stating my appointment has been scheduled in November. It is May. This process also began last year. I am sorry but in the U.S. this would never happen. And I am certain someone is reading this and wondering how would an American react. Well, we could complain even sue. Those are our options. Here both are deemed as irrational and unduly. But who or what holds people accountable for wasting time in issues of importance. How many people does Germany have to push out by bureaucratic and inefficient force? What do Germans and assimilated others do? Are they supposed to just lay down and die? Is this what integrating looks like?

The double edged sword is being forced to show up on time, bring all ones documents, have the bargeld ready, know what to expect without being told and all of the other unwritten rules. However, that only applies to outsiders, expats, immigrants, migrants and auslanders alike. Everyone else can do their own thing. I do not know how many times I have been told about people who didn't have to take a language course, or never had to wait to see a doctor, whose mail is never randomly sent back to sender or whose drink always has ice in it. I want to go back and forth with these fucking people but why should I play the silly game of trying to prove what Germany doesn't do for me. I get it, Germany can easily do everything for you and I am the bad guy. Sorry, I don't know what it is like to be on the better side of her. I don't know what it is like to leave my house and expect not to be bothered by some crazy person. I have never experienced a day that is choc full of good, uncomplicated experiences because Germany said that is my right. No. I have to be controlled, skipped, missed, forgotten, delayed, grazed and shouted at ... because. No one sits next to me. Everyone skips me. My paperwork is always missing. I knocked too early. I am overdressed for the weather. It is a lot. And honestly I think that is what I am allergic to and why am I always sick. Seriously, my nose runs at the sight of having to leave my home. I just give up on negotiating with people to buy grocery or get my thyroid checked. Time after time I realize all these silly demands are only put upon people who look, sound and feel like me. And I guess as long as no one does anything about it, we will all just stay at home and eventually leave.