I’ve been living in Germany almost 1/4 of my life. I love this country and truly feel proud of it in many aspects, not too much less than I love my motherland China. “The Country” is a very abstract concept. Out of appreciation, I’d like to write down many ordinary German people, and ordinary happenings here in my life. Because I think when I’m old and look back, the ordinary days would be the most precious memory.
Several years ago, I wanted to fly back home for my summer vacation. The train ran from Kaiserslautern to Frankfurt airport, transfer at Bad Münster am Stein. The second train on my travel was canceled for some technical reasons. It was a Sunday and the next train to Frankfurt would come in two hours. The station at Bad Münster am Stein was small. I was the only one waiting at the platform at that day. After the announcement of the train defect, a man in a Deutsche Bahn uniform came to me and invited me to his office. He said it was too windy outside, the station is right beside a small river, the air was not dry, so I might catch a cold. I could have a cup of coffee with him during the two hours. My travel case was huge and heavy. He said I could leave it on the platform. All platforms could be well monitored from the office, he believed nobody would steal it. I went with him into the cozy room.
He was doing everything in that small station: cleaning the floor, water sink and dash board in the office, checking out the train timetables, talking to colleagues in other stations via telephone. And of course, made a coffee. He told me a long story of his life, his family and I told him a lot about my short life and my hometown in east China. The dash board in his office was quite old. But the steel surface was extremely clean and polished. I stared at it for a while and he started to tell me proudly, “It was made in 1970′s, but still works very well now.” There were a lot of small light diodes, they represent the traffic lights around the station. Also several small strings made with plastic were pasted on the dash board. They represent the rails. When a train is nearing the station, some diodes would flash in red. Among the ordinary German people with whom I’ve got a chance to talk to, it is common that they have strong political opinions and they’d like to talk about it. I’ve forgot which party he was for or against( CDU or SPD? ), but remember that he described his imagination about the communism party in China. I listened and listened while sipping my coffee. No, the talk was not offending at all. He has a very peaceful life there. I could see the satisfaction of his life in the small town, despite of one or two complaints toward SPD or CDU from him. Before long, the next train came, he demonstrated the technical devices on the dash board again, went out with me in a very cheerful mood. I thanked him a lot.
He carried my heavy case into the train and hopped out swiftly. Waved a goodbye to me and to the train driver in the chilly wind.