It’s not easy being Betroffen (shocked and concerned) all of the time. It is a very stressful state of mind and can (and will) eventually lead to all sorts of other imaginary states of mind and imaginary diseases.

Just stop and think about what your average German has to deal with on a daily basis, for instance: Iraq, Guantanamo, Afghanistan, climate change, globalization, unemployment, bird flu/polonium, Iraq, Guantanamo, Afghanistan, smoking legislation, lack of smoking legislation, a dysfunctional education system, violent online computer games, computers themselves, a booming economy, more climate change, less unemployment, still too much unemployment, McDonalds, early retirement, more globalization, corrupt Siemens-VW-you-name-it management, Starbucks, Amerikanische Verhältnisse (American conditions) practically everywhere you look, more early retirement, Iraq, Guantanamo, Afghanistan, high savings, low spending, a bankrupt medical system, Hartz IV, the INTERNET, free college education, symbolic college fees instead of free college education, more early retirement, Iran won’t go away, German television, Fernsehgebühren (television license fees), Iraq, Guantanamo, Afghanistan and Betroffenheit (consternation) itself. And that’s just naming a few, too. I could go on forever. Honest.

Is it any wonder then that the average German has more than doubled the amount he or she spends on package vacation deals over the past ten years? Whereas the average expenditure for vacation was approximately 336 euros annually back in 1993, it climbed up to 732 euros by 2003. And it’s still climbing, of course.

No, the Reiseweltmeister (the world champion of vacation travel) will not blink, will not bend, will not be denied that which is his. One has to know where to set one’s priorities. Especially when living as one does in such a shocking age and all. And this should concern all of us, I mean, you.

Come visit me at Observing Hermann…

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