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Compare and Contrast - Usa and Germany

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C J Smith

Dr. T

[Course Number]

5 October 2016

[Title]: [Subtitle]

Americans and Germans have much more in common than most people think, making adjustments to life in a new country easier. Many common practices in the United States are similar to those in Germany.

My greatest shock when I was in Germany was how fast they drive. The roads and freeways are smaller compare to those in the United States. Most of the Autobahn has no restrictions on how fast a driver can go. Only the posted speed limits around the cities and towns are strictly enforced. When I was driving for the first time in Germany, I had to stay to the right. The left lane is meant for passing only. Unlike when I drive here in America; Americans tend to drive in the lane meant for passing and emergency vehicles. In some states, like in Texas, they will pull me over and write me a ticket. Some impatient Germans will flash their headlights to signal that they want to pass you or tailgate at high speeds. The German way of life is to travel by train, unlike here in the United States. The train station is called the bahnhof and they have color coded maps that will let me know what train to get on and the destination. I can get on a train and go just about anywhere in Germany, whereas here in the United States passenger trains only go to certain cities. The reason the Germans use the train as their main means of travel is because of high gas prices and to keep the pollution down. Americans rely more on diesel and gas vehicles to get around, thus raising our pollution levels higher every year. Germans can be like those from New York when it comes to waiting in line for anything. I have been elbowed, pushed, shoved, yelled at, and somebody stepped on my feet, while standing in line for the bus or train. Even the most courteous German may elbow their way to the front if you don’t stand your ground.

Most Americans love to drink beer or wine just like the Germans do, but the Germans take it to a whole different level than Americans. The German dining and celebration culture revolves around alcohol much more than Americans. They have a whole month in October that is called Oktoberfest that celebrates drinking. Between six to seven million people from all over the world visit the fairgrounds all throughout the country. Some of the larger festival halls are in the larger places like Frankfurt, Mainz, Cologne, and Munich where it all began back in the 1800’s. Oktoberfest isn’t just for drinking, there are Ferris wheels, roller coasters, carnival rides, and lots and lots of food. To drink in America, I have to be 21 years old. In Germany that is not the case. There are different legal rules in Germany when it comes to underage drinking. When you turn 14 years old and you are with your parents and they say yes, it is okay, or when you turn 16 years old, you don’t need your parent permission, but you do have to wait until you turn 18 years old to drink or buy spirts.

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