At the moment I'm listening to some music that was put together on a CD for me by my colleagues at the Tafel. There's a lot of German Gute Laune Musik and a couple of bits of Greek Bouzouki music. This is one of those times that it really is the thought that counts and I am touched by the effort, despite now mocking it on the internet. Most of my time at the Tafel was great and I enjoyed the work and, on the whole, the people were lovely. There was the one time that I wrote about where I was very unhappy by the behaviour of a couple of the staff towards customers but it was the exception. Earlier today we had coffee, cake and champagne for my farewell party. I had been expecting to supply it all but my colleagues baked cakes and set up the staff room for a small party. The big boss came and made a speech about my menschlichkeit und freundlichkeit – which is basically my humanity and my cheerfulness. I think he's probably only met me on my better days. However, the Germans do this sort of thing really well, they like speeches and they like to bring a sense of occasion to things. I've got gifts and email addresses and I feel that I'm on a fast slope down to leaving.
The Tafel is on Juden Straße and is there to serve the poor and needy but Juden Straße is also home to the smart boutiques of this town and the posh shoe shops where they don't put prices in the window. If you have to ask the price then you clearly can't afford it. These stores don't really like the Tafel because we have poor people coming in and out of our building and they walk past the posh shops in their ill filling clothes and their cheap, plastic shoes. The building is owned by the church and the vicar lives next door. The vicar doesn't like us either because we sort out cheap food in the yard and give it away to poor people and it's all very well standing in the pulpit on Sunday and talking about the poor but we don't really want them where they're visible, do we?
I really will miss this place quite a lot.