Sunday, June 20, 2010

Never say never - 10 years in Munich

Just a fews days ago the Financial Times released the 2010 issue of it's annual urban quality of life index. And which is city is the WORLDWIDE No. 1?

WOW - it looks I made a good decision, when I exactly 10 years ago packed my stuff to move south.

I have to admit it was not really love at the first sight. In fact after my first two visits sometimes in the 90ies I was more like "Uhhhh - strange place and weird people. I'll definitely NEVER move there. "
But like my grandma used to say "The words 'always' and 'never' are always lies." Or like another adage says: "Never say never." And ... Here I am - a happy resident of Munich for ten years.

The start was not easy. Apartment hunting was a nightmare and I had the impression that the city was mostly crowded with hyperdressedup snobs and old, grumpy, very unfriendly Bavarians .
But over the years I learned to love my city and here are 10 reasons why:

1) It is big enough to offer enough diversity.
Means: You do not need to hang out neither with the hyperdressedup snobs nor with grumpy old Bavarians. There are enough places (bars, clubs, restaurants, shops) for all kind of people.

2) It has all the cultural diversity in cinema, theater, museum, concert etc. you would expect from a million-citizen-city.

3) Public transportation rules. Of course we complain all the time about packed underground and delayed suburban trains (I do, too!), but everytime I try to use public transportion anywhere else like in Cologne, Hamburg, London, etc. I have to admit: Munich public transportation (mostly) rocks.

4) I feel safe. It is not that nothing happens here, but I feel safer at 1 am on the main station platform of my underground line in Munich than at daytime in many other cities.

5) Munich is laid back. I love being for example in London ... for like three days. When I then come back to Munich it feels like everything and everbody moves in slowmotion. We have Bavarian Gemütlichkeit in our veins.

6) It's clean. I know that is a very fuddy-duddy statement, but I like clean places over dirty ones. Sorry ;)

7) Once you overcome the shock the confrontation with 10.000 drunken people in a tent (and that means only one out of a dozen tents like this) causes, Oktoberfest is FUN and men in leather pants and girls in dirndls look HOT.

8) The Alpes with mountains, lakes and stunning nature are very close and tobbogganing (for the no-ski / no-snowboard people like me) is super FUN!

9) Croatia is CLOSE, the whole mediterranean is close - just a couple of hours drive - and Munich sometimes on nice summer days (means not in 2010 - the year of monsun) has an almost mediterranean atmosphere. And beergardening is the best way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon or afterwork hours on a summer day!

10) Lots people, who have their roots somewhere out of Germany, live in Munich and make at the city a very international and enjoyable place to be.
That includes of course the HUGE Croatian community here ;)

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