Migrating

Some may remember the path I set off on eleven months ago.

Today another milestone has been reached and there is now the prospect I could get to the finishing line. I am still unsure of whether I really want to go over the line though but fear the leaders of my homeland will force me to do so.

What is the point of being a citizen of a country but having no rights whatsoever to vote or officially express my views? I have no rights whatsoever to appeal to a Member of Parliament for help. In fact, they are forbidden from doing so. I guess I could appeal to her Majesty's Secretary for Foreign Affairs but as too many British citizens know to their cost, Boris could not give a straight banana-less for your fate and will only pretend to do something when the press hound him which they rarely do. A man of so little character, cowardice and self-interest that puts him amongst the worst in the world. Trump isn't as deceitful as to hide his ambitions.

There are lots of problems in Germany, not least the 10 weeks or so it has taken to get the result of my test. But I feel safer here than in the UK. Yes, there is a lot to get used to but once you rid yourself of your preconceived ideas and think a little more deeply as to why certain things fall into place.

Yesterday a great example. Sunday and a very sunny day, the first for months. Get into action and get the washing machine working with the PV generating so much electricity you fear the roof will catch fire.

BUT IT'S SUNDAY IN GERMANY. YOU DON'T DO CLOTHES WASHING ON SUNDAY IN GERMANY. You don't wash your car, you don't go shopping, you don't cut the grass, you don't hammer nails to make a garden shed, you don't saw wood. YOU RELAX.

OK, while certain things are prohibited by law, washing clothes is not, unless of course you live in a block of flats and the noise of your machine is excessive. However the moment you hang out your washing to dry in the garden, everyone knows you have been washing and that will damage your reputation more than a visit by the police.

Luckily the PV produces so much that we can use the 20+ year-old UK built Hotpoint tumble dryer and don't need the washing line.

The Germans also have strange evaluation systems. Shocked me yet again as I quickly glance in the carpark of the Adult Education School's carpark when I collected my certificate of "sufficient" German language proficiency to fulfil the rules of the Immigration laws.

Three sections each with vastly different scores ranging from 17 to 100. You have to turn over the certificate to interpret them.

Hearing & Reading: 44 points - the pass range is 33-45 thus about 98%
Writing: 17 points - the pass range is 15-20 thus about 85%
Speaking: 100 points - the pass range is 75-100 thus 100%

You have to pass all three sections so there are no total points that may indicate a pass mark. Simply a "B1" which is no more than the test level of German you have taken. I don't know them inside out but something like A1 is beginners, B1 is this "German for Immigrants", C3 may be for senior school, D4 Business German etc. It's a system used throughout Europe, even the UK .... for the moment at least.

We will see what the future brings but I'm not relying on Therese who sent me three emails last week telling me what she was doing for EU citizens living and working in the UK. These come fairly frequently. I can't remember when the last one came saying what she was doing for UK citizens living in the EU.

Any of the 450 million rest 27 EU citizens who may be living in the UK have a right to get help from the British MP in whose constituency they live in. I, as a British citizen, have no such right. And I doubt the  Bavarian member of the State or German parliament cares an awful lot about my concerns on such matters as UK pensions or the MTB mountain bike riders lack of harmonious warning bells on their bikes and thus frightening the wits out of all OAPs going about their peaceful business on the South Downs coastal path.

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