German Of The Day: Heimaturlaub

That means home leave. And boy oh boy is Germany ever sticking to its guns on this one. When it comes to being super-mega-ultra strict about paying for asylum seekers’ vacation trips back home, that is.

Vacation

As German Integrationsbeauftragte (integration commissioner) Aydan Özoguz (SPD) explains, Germany doesn’t foot the bill for just any asylum seeker. They have to be Ausnahmefällen (exceptional cases) before the German tax payer will be asked to send them on an all expenses paid flight back home – and back again.

Someone’s mother dying would be such an exceptional case, for instance. Anybody’s mother (it doesn’t have to be your own). Or maybe your ex-neighbor’s dog is suffering for an ingrown toenail. Or maybe you forgot to bring your favorite bowling ball with you when you were on the run and now you have the urgent need to go pick it up. For integration purposes, of course. You know, exceptional cases like that.

I’m not making this up, people. Not all of it anyway.

“Es kann gewichtige Gründe geben, warum ein anerkannter Flüchtling für kurze Zeit in seine Heimat reisen will.”

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Asylum Seekers Go On Vacation In The Land Of Their Persecution

No, not in Germany. Germany is the place where they get the dough to do that.

Vacation

Then they go back to the land of their persecution to vacation. That’s why they were granted asylum here in the first place. No, not to go on vacation in the land of their persecution. To escape the land of their persecution. Is that so hard to understand? They were being persecuted, see? That’s why they came to Germany. To get the asylum. Then, after they get the dough from the Arbeitsagentur, they go back to the land of their persecution. Or some of them do. But only for a short vacation. That’s allowed or something. Or maybe it isn’t. Hard to say for sure.

Do you get it now? No.  I’m not going to repeat that again. And hell no. Of course I didn’t make any of this up. I don’t have to. Are you persecuting me or something?

Asylberechtigte kehren zu Urlaubszwecken vorübergehend in jenes Land zurück, aus dem sie offiziell geflüchtet sind. Die Bundesagentur für Arbeit bestätigte: „Es gibt solche Fälle.“ Offizielle Erhebungen lägen dazu aber nicht vor.

Speaking Of Posing With Animals…

What’s wrong with this picture?

FKK

Dogs are allowed on the beaches here.

Six odd things Germans do in the summer: These summer pastimes show that Germans’ reputation for being uptight and straight-laced sticklers for punctuality couldn’t be further from the truth. Many like nothing better than getting naked and drunk, and blocking up public traffic routes on the way.

Germans So Shocked By Greek No They Decide To Go On Big Fat Greek Vacation

Stunned by the Greek no yesterday and the end of European civilization as they know it, millions and millions of German tourists have spontaneously decided to get their minds off it all by going on vacation to Greece again this year, just like the millions and millions of other Germans who did the same thing last year.

Tourists

Not that it matters anymore or anything, but tourism used to account for 18 percent of what used to be the Greek economy.

“We are still taking bookings for Greece and there is no change in the levels.”

Mass Numbers Of Germans Flee Country

And then return again. Several times a year even. They call it Tourismus (tourism).

Travel

That’s right, when not moaning about capitalism and democracy itself, Germans like to spend their ample free time breaking new records in the World Travel Champions category. In 2014 they spent more than 67 billion euros traveling, for instance, five percent more than the year before. The next record for 2015 seems to be vorprogrammiert (preprogrammed), too.

Die Deutschen lassen sich ihren Urlaub so viel kosten wie nie. Mehr als 67 Milliarden Euro gaben sie im vergangenen Jahr für Urlaubsreisen von mindestens fünf Tagen aus, plus fünf Prozent zum Vorjahr.

German Poverty?

Nice try. This is another one of my favorite German myths. You can claim that poverty exists here all you want but everybody knows that poverty only exists in the real world and has nothing at all to do with this country. Or could it be that I am the one with an “unrealistic” definition of what poverty is?

Poverty

Report: About 3.1 million wage and salary earners in Germany had an income below the poverty threshold, according to Saturday’s edition of the Saarbrücker Zeitung newspaper.

You have to understand how Germany works to know that this is ridiculous. For one thing, nobody has to work in Germany if he or she does not want to – ever. They get their rent paid and a low monthly allowance (and then work illegally on the side in a lot of cases) indefinitely = for life, if they want to (everybody know how or knows someone who does).  Many people choose to live this way (I know a few personally). Their welfare system is called Hartz IV, by the way. So like, are you a victim of “poverty” if you choose to be? In a country that has the money to pay your way, I mean?

And you must also understand how a German defines poverty in Germany: “Every second low wage worker, some 1.5 million Germans, would not be able to pay for a one-week holiday per year outside their own four walls. About 600,000 workers were forgoing having their own car because they could not afford it.”

OMG. It’s certainly a cold, cruel world out there when you can’t fly off to Mallorca twice a year like everybody else does and/or keep your expensive German sports car on the road as God intended you to (even though you don’t believe in God, but still).

“The number of workers who earn scarcely or marginally more than the government unemployment benefits (Hartz IV) is alarmingly high.”

PS: Speaking of poverty, get your free copy of Dumb Deutsch here. Offer ends Monday.

What Goes Around Comes Around

Even GERMANS hate compatriots who reserve sunloungers on holiday, according to new research

Chairs

Germans take around 70million holidays a year as a nation, but are far from relaxed despite all their time off.

The survey found that most Germans abroad get upset easily – including 14 per cent who are annoyed by other tourists, mainly Russians, Chinese, Brits and other Germans.

Sinking Ships Can’t Stop Them

Ethiopian gunmen can’t stop them.

Germans just can’t stop going on vacation. It’s what they do.

And that’s why they win the Reiseweltmeisterpreis (World Champion Travellers Award) every year. It’s not a real award, of course, but Germans are always talking about it as if it were (and only a German would be interested in winning an award like that in the first place, come to think of it).

And in 2011, the German nation spent 60 billion euros (that’s billion with a b) on travel.

“Tourists don’t know where they’ve been, travelers don’t know where they’re going.”

Die Deutschen bleiben Reiseweltmeister. Über 60 Milliarden Euro gaben sie laut einer Studie 2011 für Reisen ins Ausland aus.

Abenteuerurlaub

Germans just love to go on vacation, as you know. And a lot of them are crazy about going on so-called adventure holidays. It is good for the countries they go adventure holidaying in, I guess. It promotes understanding or something, I think. And world peace.

Anyway, one German tourist vacationing in Afghanistan just had the adventure holiday of a lifetime and is now on permanent vacation, along with an unfortunate Afghan who was travelling with him.

Unknown gunmen killed a German tourist and his Afghan companion in central Afghanistan on Saturday. Two other Afghans were wounded when the gunmen opened fire on the van the tourist was travelling in, a senior police officer said.

In August: Two German nationals were killed last month while hiking in mountains near the capital Kabul. Their killers have not been found.

Greeks Don’t Work Enough

Talk about your vacation nation. No, not Greece. Germany.

This isn’t really news, of course. “Germans may accuse spendthrift euro zone southerners of too much play and not enough work, but they enjoy the most generous annual holiday time in the European Union, a study released on Wednesday showed.”

Hey, it’s nice to be the king.

Keine anderen Europäer haben mehr freie Tage im Jahr – insgesamt sind es jeweils 40.