In this last week, I spent time in Budapest, Hungary. We each were allotted two vacation days for working full time in the month of June and some of us chose to use those days for a long weekend in Budapest. The two things that I most wanted to do were visit the thermal baths and go on a river cruise down the Danube. I am so grateful that I got to experience both. On Friday, I got to visit the ruin bars. These bars were abandoned buildings that got redecorated and are now popular attractions. Saturday, we went shopping and visited the thermal baths at night. It was so fun to be able to visit the baths and go swimming. The history behind the baths goes back over 100 years. The baths were formed from hot spring wells that were drilled. This allowed the baths to be warm and open year around. I was surprised by how warm the water was when I got in. On Sunday, we went to a traditional Hungarian restaurant for dinner. I was very happy with the dish that I ordered; it was similar to a stroganoff but without meat and using a more tomato base than cream. After that, I got to go on the river cruise that I wanted to go on. I saw some of the biggest attractions that were lit up at night including the Hungarian Parliament building. In addition to Budapest, this week has been a good food week for me. I tried two new restaurants this week. One restaurant had hand pulled noodles. It was so tasty and I was able to stop after work. The other restaurant had dumplings. This was also tasty and I was impressed by the presentation for a casual place. Since Berlin has so many transplants and is so diverse there are so many different cuisines to try and many of them are very delicious.
Overall, I think that the communication is only a little different between Germany and the US, but does have some key differences. My company specifically, is very keen on calling each other. We have a very small office with about 10 rooms and no longer than two basketball courts from end to end. One of the things that probably contributes to this is that Covid forced them to work from home and they now follow a hybrid approach. Therefore, people are used to picking up the phone to talk to each other. I think it is quite different that when people are in the office they don’t get up to talk to each other about work but they make the effort to talk at lunch and say good morning and goodbye to the office. I’ve found that at my previous jobs people would say bye to the people they passed on the way out or went out of their way to greet their friends but not necessarily the whole office. It is also quite interesting to me that they will have a company retreat that will address the differences in people’s preferred communication style based on their qualities. I have not had any miscommunication differences but I don’t have much need to interact with people other than my supervisor at my company. One thing that I found very interesting about communication is that they don’t have any qualms with replying all to an email. In the US, this is generally not appreciated, but my office does this regularly.
In the coming weeks, I will be wrapping up my internship and preparing for my family to come visit. I’m very excited for the things that I will do these next few weeks. A few of the things that I most want to fit into my time are the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, the Topography of Terror, Checkpoint Charlie Museum, the TV tower, and the Sanssoucci Palace in Potsdam. With only two weekends left until my parents arrive I hope to make the most of my time. In regards to work, my supervisor is starting me on a new project since I finished the first one faster than expected. I will also be attending the company retreat with everyone at the castle. I’m excited for that since it’s an uncommon experience to be able to visit a castle plus I will get to know my coworkers better. Since I sit in a room with just my supervisor, I don’t know my other coworkers as well as I would’ve liked but this experience will be a great way to talk to them on a professional and personal level.