Here Are the Things I Will Miss Most About the USA / by Nicole Paulus


Some of you already know that for the entire month of November I have been in the US visiting family and friends. Though I've thoroughly enjoyed my time stateside, I am eager to get back to my friends and routine in Berlin.

A few of my American friends currently living in Berlin even made me a list of some things they'd like me to bring back to them. Some of them might surprise you:

  • DayQuil- Sure Germany has great healthcare but you know what they don’t have? Over-the-counter cough medicine. I’m not really sure why Germans aren’t in to self-diagnosing. I mean, what could go wrong? *Cough, cough, meth.* Sometimes you just need a sip of that sizzurp, ok?Don’t judge me, only God can judge me *shoots gun*. Even if it doesn’t actually work, it sure makes you feel like you’re doing something productive. Speaking of placebo effects…
  • Airborne- It’s true, you can’t get Airborne in Germany. Even if it is a placebo effect, I swear by these dumb tablets. As soon as I feel a tickle in my throat I dissolve a tablet faster than you can say Obamacare. I magically wake up the next day feeling spiffy and energetic. Sure my urine might be fluorescent orange for the rest of the day, but you know what? I don’t get sick. Coincidence? I think not.
  • Advil Liqui-Gels- I know what you’re thinking, “those crazy Germans don’t get headaches? what the hell am I doing wrong?”— Well, settle down. They do in fact get headaches. They also have plenty of headache relief aids such as aspirin and ibuprofen. But what they don’t have are these magical things called Advil Liqui-Gels. You know, the ones that literally melt your headache away within 30 seconds.  
  • Hot sauce- Sure I am a fan of German fare in small doses, but in all honesty it’s a bit bland. You know what would make that schnitzel something to write home about? Tapatio, that’s what. 

Here are some things I wish I could bring back with me:

  • Trader Joe’s (or Whole Foods when I am feeling fancy)- Ahh, the land of adorable packaging, free samples, and faux artisanal products that trick you into thinking your spending your hard earned dollars wisely.
  • Target- My friend recently asked if there was a store like Target in Berlin. After telling her no she replied with, “but where do you buy all your ‘stuff’?” I am rarely left speechless.
  • Customer service- Even if that smile is fake, it feels good giving my money to someone who doesn’t look like it hurts to be alive. Berlin, I'm looking at you.
  • My previously mentioned zany family (pictured above)- It’s not hard to spot us. We are the ones laughing way too loud, dancing way too hard, and singing Adele to way too many strangers. It's probably best that I live on another continent. That much awesomeness could be dangerous in large quantities.

And now for the things I won’t miss, not one bit:

  • Sitting in a car- Seriously, I hate that shit. Traffic seems to bring out the worst in everyone I know, including myself. I've never had road rage on the U-bahn, just sayin'...
  • Target- Why is it that I end up spending at least 20 bucks every time I step foot into this magical/horrific money pit? Sorry Target, I'm done with you.
  • Trader Joe’s- Um, I seriously contemplated buying a “pecan pie in a jar” yesterday. Why? Because it was there and the packaging was freaking adorable. If there was a TJs in Berlin, my thighs would be in serious trouble. Pass.

Seriously though, thanks to everyone that made my time in the USA special. Though I didn't dance nearly as much as I do in Berlin, I sure did have a lot of belly aching laugh sessions with those nearest and dearest to my heart. Until we meet again America....HELLO, FROM THE OTHER SIDE.