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Unless you like it dull, dark and cold, you would be well advised to stay out of Germany between November and April. During those months the German climate originates mostly in the North Atlantic, where it is very ghastly indeed. Days are short, nights long and people slightly miffed. Quite understandably so. Thick clouds are wafting very close to the ground and the sun seems to be on vacation, somewhere in Southern Italy.
This is also the time of year when many Germans flee their homeland in search of more pleasant weather. The Spanish Island of Mallorca is a major magnet, so are the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa.
Those who cannot afford to go or prefer to save their money for the summer, can be found in saunas, indoor swimming parks and other localities with a good heating system and lots of artificial light. Pubs are also quite popular around this time of year.
Usually around mid May, spring, which should have arrived two months prior, finally trudges around the corner, a little drowsy still, but in good spirit, and the warm season sets in. As it does the behavior of people changes. Suddenly, there is an easiness in the air and a glow on every face. The proverbial stiff German can't help but smile as this new energy pervades the country. This keeps building up until the high summer when temperatures soar to 95 degrees and Germans find something new to complain about. The heat, this time.
Summer in Germany is truly remarkable because it transforms the entire nation. A city that looked naked, gray and alien in the winter now boasts the lush green of trees and grass, millions of colorful flowers, outdoor cafes, singing birds, and a whole new flair. If only it could be like that all year round. The German mentality may be a lot different.
But no, it won't stay nice. It never does. The clouds come, with them the rain and the wind and there you have it. Until next year.
|Sheri Ann Richerson|