I have touched on this before. Germans and their cars. But I have been driving here for a while now and my observations – and remember these are only my observations – are fairly stark: Germans in their cars are horrible people!
Don’t get me wrong. I have found the Germans to be genuinely friendly and open. But put them behind the steering wheel and things change. They won’t wait for you to complete a manoeuvre in your car – they will see a gap and squeeze past it without a nod or a smile; they typically drive as fast as they can (without breaking a speed limit – I have noticed very little of that); in short, there is no courtesy to other road users.
The reason I am writing about this, and have noticed it so starkly, is because it is at complete odds with the people I know in Germany, all of whom as I say are exceptionally nice people. Of course driving in other countries is always going to be a trying time for the newcomer. But when I have driven in Italy (which is an order of magnitude more scary), the drivers there seem to be of a single mind. Traffic flows haphazardly to be sure, but it seems to be an orchestrated mess. The Germans drive as individuals, each believing they own the road.
But this does put me in a dilemma, because the people I know are all so very nice that I cannot possibly imagine them as behaving so badly behind the wheel. So maybe I simply don’t have enough experience of this particular observation and have been unlucky with the road users I have met?