If you have ever taken a personality test, you will be able to relate to this blog. There is a certain personality type that is basically, well…very particular. This type of person is very organized and very driven toward perfection. Well, we live in an entire country of them! There are rules about rules here. Not only are most Germans concerned with following the rules, they are concerned with making YOU follow the rules. So, it is not unusual for you to get someone giving you a lecture on “only walking across the street on a green light”, or “not crossing any part of the solid white line while driving”, or “the evils of white bread”, or “how to do yardwork”. ..all of which I have personally experienced.
It seems though, that German cultural morals are only based on laws. If it’s not against the law, then it’s okay morally. The lack of what we consider morals is very evident during the carnival time. The carnival goers say it’s their time to “let loose” and do things that they wouldn’t normally do. I’m talking about the young and old people alike. Then we observed that on Ash Wednesday, they are supposed to ask for forgiveness for their collective sin. (This, of course, isn’t true for our friends here that are believers!)
Anyway, the good part of this personality type is that they are very orderly. The paving stones on the streets in front of houses are sometimes “mopped”, they are meticulous about weeding their gardens, and the speed limits are for the most part observed… yes, that’s right, there ARE speed limits in Germany… as I have also personally experienced a few times! Above is a photo of how perfect they even stack their wood. There is “correct way” to do everything here. All the logs are the same size and completely in line and they are cut exactly the same width/length because they are carefully measured before cutting.