I was born in a tiny village (about 1000 inhabitants) in East Germany in 1966.
My father is a retired cooper miner and has a Polish background. I vaguely remember his parents who came from Brest (Poland) after WW2. Their German was very broken. My father moved to the village while he did his apprenticeship.
My mother is a retired florist and was born in the Sudetenland which today is a part of Czech Republic. She was three years old when they came to the village during WW2.
I didn’t go to high school because it was uncool where I grew up. Imagine. Nobody from my class went and I was mainstream trying to fit in even though I finished best in class. The teachers were not happy because quota was not met. They tried to convince my parents to convince me. My parents did not push because nobody from my family ever went to high school.
I finished an apprenticeship as an office clerk and decided afterwards to go back to school and study. My degree wasn’t acknowledge in West Germany for several years. It is now. Does it matter? I don’t know. It remains tough to explain what I studied but isn’t that true for everyone.
I live and work in NYC for many years now with a long path behind me. I am glad and grateful for the life I experienced and still will experience. And I am happy to take you on a journey back to an earlier time, and a Germany which does not exist any more.
One more note since there is a perception of Germans tending to perfectionism 🙂
I learned my very imperfect English only after I moved to the US. I was about 33. You might recognize some Denglish if you understand German or just read some strange English here and there. Just enjoy it. OK.