Volker Bouffier answered citizens’ questions at the Hessentag

The Ministerpräsident (prime minister) of the State of Hesse, Volker Bouffier answered citizens’ questions at the Hessentag on Sunday.  The Bürgersprechstunde took place on the stage in Hall 1 of the Landesausstellung and lasted for an hour.

The question and answer session was chaired by Statesecretary and Spokesman of the government of the State of Hessen, Michael Bußer.

Ministerpräsident Volker Bouffier and Statesecretary Michael Bußer answer questions at the Hessentag in Oberursel

Ministerpräsident Volker Bouffier (r) and Statesecretary Michael Bußer (l) answering questions at the Hessentag

Topics covered included the school situation in Oberursel, the extension of one school in particular, although no answer here was forthcoming because it is apparently not something that the state is responsibly for, rather the local district council (Kreis).   Strangely, when that council was being elected, the politicians said the exact opposite. [Read more…]

Is it the same in Germany?

A popular question to be asked when talking to someone who does not live in Germany, is “is it the same”?

“Is it the same where you live?”

“Is it the same in Germany?”

Sometimes it is the assumption, that something that happens in one country or is defined by laws there must be the same or at least similarly defined in another, and people are often surprised when this is not the case.

SwansOne of the stranger questions recently was “is it illegal to kill a swan in Germany?”  from @johnusher.  Quite why you might want to do this to such a beautiful bird is beyond me, and I am sure that even if you did you would need permission and – this being Germany – pay tax for it.

But how did the question come about?  Quite simply, it’s one of those bits of general knowledge about life in the United Kingdom that people know – wild swans belong to the Crown and it’s illegal to kill them.

So the assumption I guess it that they must belong to someone in Germany too.

Well I’m not aware that they do, and I’m not aware of any similar tradition here.  Unless someone else knows otherwise?

If you do, please leave a comment!

Truly German – Episode 03 – 4th September 2009

Truly German is a new podcast that talks about the news in Germany.  Sometimes this will by national news, maybe political, but we will also be covering some local topics.

We want to have some fun at the same time, so part of the podcast is our Länderquiz – in which my contestant has to guess in which Bundesland three different news stories took place in.

This week the topics are:

  1. New and discontinued traffic signs
  2. Twitter and election results
  3. Oberursel barrel organ festival

The quiz covers the following stories:

  1. Sehler-Quetschefest (plum festival)
  2. Störtebecker-Festspielen
  3. Bahnhof des Jahres (Station of the year)

Listen to the episode and tell us what you think about the stories covered:

(Press the “play” button to listen to the podcast)

Download the MP3 file

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