(And only grudgingly, if I absolutely have to …) Sorry, this is gonna be a bi-lingual post with some of the words not being able to be translated into German. But, since German words like “rucksack”, “kaput”, “kindergarten”, etc. have also become part of the English language … and Google knows everything … you might be able to forgive me.
The German language and its differences to the Austrian one can be compared to British and American English. Language is identity and I just don’t want to lose it.
The most horrible word, I’ll never use – and get goose bumps of horror by just hearing it – is “lecker”. Which is used for a tasty dish and means “delicious”. Living in Germany, I have to suffer hearing it occasionally – and every time when I do I have to think of my world travelled Grandfather, who became quite mad if anyone dared to use this word. And I feel absolutely the same.
“Brötchen” (roll) is another word that barely comes across my lips. Whenever I have to buy one for breakfast at the bakery, I quickly mumble, “one roll please” and look around embarrassedly … I just can’t stand it. Which is why I’m happy that my favourite discount grocery store offers “Kaisersemmeln” (Kaiser rolls) the way we have in Austria. Of course, I can’t expect “Langsemmeln” (long oval shaped with a deep cut in the middle lengthwise to divide easily) – typical for Styria – to be obtained here.
Here in Germany everything is “Brötchen”, in Austria we differentiate much more. We have Kornweckerl (rye and wheat with corn), Kornspitz (long shaped), Salzstangerl (long shaped wheat roll with salt and caraway seeds on top), Vinschgerl, and many more. Same with “Hörnchen” (basically a croissant but different kind of dough). Euw. Euw, euw, euw. They are called “Kipferl” in Austria. And Kipferl is how I will call them. And oh, how I miss them. You can’t get them here the way they are back home. I miss having one for breakfast, dunking it into my hot chocolate. Pure bliss.
And the German cakes and pies … if there isn’t whipped cream involved, it’s not cake. (But, we’ve already covered the German culinary excentricities!) Oh, and don’t get me started on the word “Quark” (curd cheese), called “Topfen” in Austria. Quarkstrudel? No, it’s Topfenstrudel. Just like Apfelstrudel! And once again, no, puff pastry is NOT the correct dough for either. It’s filo pastry. Otherwise it should not be allowed to be called a “Strudel”.
Why do I even think about this? (Not to mention write about such an insignificant matter?) Well, what else is there to write about? Corona, check, home office, check, everyday politics, check, books, check … boy, it’s about time I get out more again and return to my travelling self … soon, soon, I’ll be on vacation too. The first one in two years!