: This is inspired by this blog I recently read about what an Australian living in Germany finds puzzling about the Germans... What do you think non-Austrians would find odd about the Austrian people?
Haha, great question! I had to do a little bit research as well, because it's definitely harder than it looks to answer this. So, in no particular order:
- Most Austrians don't know what The Sound of Music
even is. Of the ones who do know about it, even fewer have actually seen it! I haven't. I can't even remember, if they ever aired it on TV here.
- We love winter sports. Because we're actually good at it, especially skiing. Many people know how to and go skiing all the time. (Not me, though, last time I went skiing was when I was a teenager.) We even like to watch all kinds of winter sports on TV. What baseball, basketball, (American) football is for Americans, is ski races, ski jumping (my personal favorite), biathlon, etc. for us.
- We love football (soccer), even though we suck at it on an international level. We haven't managed to go to the World Cup or Euro in ages. Well, with the exception of the Euro 2008, but only because we were host country (together with Switzerland). Austrian footballer who doesn't suck: David Alaba
On a side note: We're awesome on an European level in American football. In the past 11 years there has always been at least one Austrian team in the finale of the Eurobowl, 8 times an Austrian team has won.
- Austria is a heaven for smokers. Our anti-smoking laws are a joke. You're not allowed to smoke in public buildings or in places like the train station, even though many people do. When restaurants/pubs are a certain size, they have to have designated smoker and non-smoker areas. Smaller places can decide if they want to be a place for smokers or non-smokers, in most cases they decide to let people smoke. Meh.
- Many lakes (and even some public pools) have a nudist section. Here it's called FKK (Freikörperkultur = free body culture). Even in the regular section, it's not uncommon to see topless women.
- We like to be nude in the sauna, just like you should.
- Shops are closed on Sundays and public holidays. There are a few exceptions, though. In general, shops close 7:30/8 pm at the latest (there are exceptions here too).
- We have 5 weeks of paid vacation. Once you're 25 years with the same company, you get a 6th week.
- We have tons of public holidays (13), most of them are religious holidays. Which brings us to the next point:
- Austria is a very Roman Catholic country.
- We love beer! Every Austrian drinks about 105 liter of beer per year.
- We like to wear Dirndl and Lederhosen. Not all the time, but in recent years even young people like to wear them again, especially for festivals and fairs.
- Service is always included at restaurants, when you tip your waiter we usually just round up to the next Euro.
- At a restaurant, you'll only get the check if you ask for it. It is considered rude to get the check without asking for it.
- We don't believe in air conditioning. It's rare to have a/c in your house/flat.
- We like to drink from bottles, not from cans. You can buy stuff in cans, but bottles are more common.
- Legal drinking age is 16, 18 for the hard stuff.
- We can get our driver's license at 17. It used to be 18, though.
- Automatic cars are rare.
- We speak German. Austrian German, which is similar, but not quite the same as German spoken in Germany. There are different words for some things, some words even have a different gender. And of course there are tons of dialects.
- We love coffee. At coffee houses/restaurants you will always get a glass of water with your coffee. At least you should! There are about a million ways to prepare coffee and I'm not talking about "coffee" that you get at Starbucks. Here's a short list of different kinds of Viennese coffee
(scroll down for the list).
- We have universal health care.
- There are no kangaroos in Austria! Well, except in zoos. And sometimes they escape. ;)
If anyone wants to add to the list, please do so in the comments! :DIf you want to ask a question for the January Talking Meme, you can ask them here or here. Lots of dates still open!Crossposts: http://bettina.dreamwidth.org/753084.html