Does living abroad make you more patriotic? This question has been bugging me for a while. I am not a very patriotic person to start out with. Yes, there are certain aspects of Germany that I am proud of and there are many things I miss from my home country, but I never thought about the question of patriotism when I still lived in Germany. I guess it’s not until you see yourself through somebody else’s eyes that you really think about these things. Well, at least I didn’t. And compared to Americans in general and Texans in particular, I am still in no way patriotic. I mean, how can anybody keep up with Texan pride? These guys have bumper stickers to proclaim even the pride of people who moved here. And I like how proud people here are of their state. So, has living here made me more patriotic? No, not specifically living in Texas, but living abroad in different countries I think has. Why? Well, you recognize all the things that are good in your country that you used to take for granted, but that not the same abroad.
Why am I talking about all of this when the topic of this fun round of the Blogger Stammtisch is football/soccer (chosen by Andrew from Grounded Traveler)? Because I never watched it when I lived in Germany. However, when I started living abroad I suddenly got together with friends to support the German team in national matches. I guess I just have never really been into soccer before. Growing up in Germany it was just one of those sports that people watched. Many of my friends in high school had favorite teams from the cities surrounding us. It’s not like football in the US though where you pretty much just favor the team of the university that happens to be in your city. University sports aren’t big in Germany. Well, even saying that is an exaggeration… they’re pretty much non-existent. Anyways, I never cared about the local soccer games. I also didn’t care for the European or World Championships until I became an expat. Now, I don’t know if it’s because I started living abroad or because I just got older and outgrew my “soccer is boring” attitude, but as the years have passed I found myself out of a sudden watching Germany play in the European and World Championships every few years and actually caring about the outcome.
In fact, when all of the craziness of a European or World Championship is in full swing, I kind of wish I could be in Germany watching some of the games with a few friends (who would be very surprised because they only know the Sabrina that doesn’t watch soccer). I still don’t know all the rules and all the players, but being part of a huge public viewing party sounds like fun. Seeing all the little German flags on cars in the streets sounds very nice. I don’t know a lot of Germans here in Lubbock, so while we are in the middle of the UEFA 2012, the European Championship, right now, I can only sometimes catch part of a game during my lunch break with a few friends. I’ll miss out on the fun of public viewing, but if Germany makes it to the later rounds maybe I can host a viewing at home for a few crazy friends Go Germany!
Check out what some of the bloggers who are in Germany right now have to say: