Excerpt - Chapter 6

A Nation of Know-Alls 

Often in the first years I was over-sensitive, thinking people were treating me badly or thought I was stupid because I was foreign, but mostly I did keep my sense of humour. When I had my second child in a German maternity home, the staff was generally superb and one even told me, “Oh, you are one of us.” An honorary German! One day however, I returned to my bed to find a copy of the magazine “Eltern” (Parents) —on my bedside table, with a small difference—it was in Turkish. Now I speak quite a few languages, but Turkish is unfortunately not one of them.
    The next time I saw the paediatric nurse, I thanked her, tongue in cheek, for the magazine, but with a deadpan expression said that unfortunately I did not understand Turkish. She did not bat an eyelid but took the magazine back, without saying a word. She never brought me a German one, though. So I faced a real dilemma—should I improve my German and try and pass for one or should I fit into the mould of a foreigner and start learning Turkish?

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