7# 30 days stiching my Eurotrip dream : Honest Country Called Germany

If  you are Indonesian, who life in Indonesia, you probably knew “Kantin kejujuran” (Honesty canteen). It is a small food store, without store attendant. All the things there have same price. The costumer have to put their money on the box, and pick up the things themselves. These canteen usually placed in school, lately also in a government offices. As an additional, this concept is totally unusual for Indonesia. So, why is it exist? This is  some kind of “honesty training”.

Yes, to teach people to be honest…. Well, for a religious country like Indonesia, u could say in sarcastic way, that this canteen would not supposed to be exist! It’s gotta be a joke! We all honest, of course!! Cos we’ll are afraid of God!

So… the result is, some of the canteen in school reported closed due bankruptcy.   U knew, all the stuff gone, but no money in the box……. Surprised? Me? Of course no! In case you’re interested to know more about “kantin kejujuran, here is one of the news. Too bad, it is in Bahasa Indonesia.

My impression about Germany is : This whole country is a hella big “kantin kejujuran”. But apparently, it won’t go bankrupt,  cos the box always full of money. OK, i probably making my opinion too fast. I was there only for 14 days. And i was totally a tourist. If i was a citizen, i probably would have made another opinion. I was staying in Dortmund almost all over that 14 days. I visited Berlin for a couple of days, I also commuter in small town around Dortmund. Oh yeah, i was visiting Cologne as well.

Almost all parking place in Germany are paid, and there are no officer there. So, if we want to park, we have to find the ticket vending machine, decided how long we would stay, and pay. The ticket vending machine would gave us the ticket that should be placed nicely in the dashboard. Sometimes, God knows when, there would be officer to check out the windshield. No ticket in the dashboard means big fines! I don’t know how would they charge the fine. Clamp the wheel, or simply send the bill to the car owner, I don’t know. Mr.BB always pay the ticket. He never ever suggest me the opposite. He said, it would be a big fine, if he got caught!

As I walked out of the car park, i took a glace on the windshields i passed…… They all have the ticket.  On one occasion, in the tourist spot, someone passed us his parking ticket. Apparently, he left the parking place a lot faster than he expected. So, free parking ticket for us! Yippie! When we were about to left of the parking place, Mr. BB passed the ticket to someone else, cos it was still 1,5 hour left.

Germany highway (autobahn) are well known as the best road,  in Europe. For me, they are road with too many sign! Speeding in Germany highway seems to be easy, everyone stays the middle lane, left line only for preceding.  No one cut your lane. Every car stays at least 30 meters from other cars. And….. i never saw police nor guard in the highway. But everyone seems to follow the rule religiously.   Oh yeah, there are “silent guards”, they catch driver who over speed. They’re automatic camera with flash, and they’re everywhere, not just in the highway.  Mr. BB got flashed 3 times while driving with me…….. The fine came automatically to his house within a few weeks. Too bad, he could not pay “peace fine” on the spot, cos those “silent guard” seems to be too tough to got bribed…….

When i was in Berlin, i use subway (u-bahn) a lot. This is the only subway i saw without gate.  I have seen subway in Hongkong, China, Thailand, Kuala Lumpur, Rome, Milan and Paris. All using gates. No ticket, no entry through the gates. In Berlin, u can go inside the subway without ticket. I even didn’t notice where’s  the ticket machine! I often just walk inside the platform, and realize that i have to go back to find the ticket machine! Buying a ticket is not enough, it needs to be validated, in the rather unseen small machine colored yellow.  What happens if  we got inside the subway without a ticket? Depend on how lucky we are.  If we’re unlucky, we probably got caught by the officers, suffer from serious embarrassment,  and of course…… got big fine. I don’t know how would they collect the fine, pay on the spot, or else, don’t asked me, i always been buying my ticket.

My CS host, a Berline-er guy, told me that the U-bahn is expensive, that’s why he rides a bike. He offered me his spare bike, but i’d rather walk till my feet numb, than riding bike in the – full-of-rules-alien-world!  My host is not rich, i guess he is middle class. His cute 1 bedroom flat was quite in the center of Berlin. I think his opinion about the U-bahn rate was quite general, otherwise, there would not be that much bike rider in Berlin. During my trip, i never had problem with subway, except for Milan. I would write about i later. All ticket machine have english option. One ride in Berlin cost 2,6 EUR, 7 EUR for 12 hours ticket.

During my 3 days round around Berlin, i met the subway inspection once. Meanwhile, Mexican girl i met in the hostel in Rome, didn’t met them at all. She was staying for 4 days in Berlin.

I think Germany people are a bit un-real, hahahhah! No rule breaker? Com’on…… that would be a real-dull kind of facts! How could they be that straight? Are Germany people afraid of God?? Well, i don’t think so. May be, the Bavarian does, since they’re quite religious.  But the rest? I guess they’re afraid of fine more than anything…….

In one occasion, Mr.BB told me that there was cigaret vending machine near by his place in Dortmund. But they’re all gone now. He said it must have been wrecked once, got robbed, and the cigaret company didn’t replace them.  So…..apparently there are rule-breaker in Germany! What a reliefs! Hahahhaha!!

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