11 Side Effects of Living in Luxembourg
1. Your head is constantly spinning from the five different languages spoken at your office.
Luxembourg is one of those special places where the ratio of expats to the local population is incredibly high. If you work in the private sector, few of your colleagues are Luxembourgish. They’re from France, Germany, Mauritius, Brazil…
2. You’ve forbidden yourself from grocery shopping in your sweatpants because you’ll probably run into your boss.
With only a few big supermarkets in a tiny place like Luxembourg City, every time you go shopping you bump into someone you know. It may be a friend, it may be your boss, it may be your client.
3. You’ve completely changed your definition of “a sunny day.”
You now believe the weather’s good “when a patch of clear blue sky can be seen at some point.”
4. Wednesday is the only night your friends will go out with you.
Everyone in Luxembourg goes somewhere else exciting on the weekend, so there’s nobody here.
5. You’ve stopped buying clothes that need any type of mending.
Because the mending usually costs more than the garment itself.
6. Every day alive is another day closer to the 22 of June.
The country’s national holiday is celebrated on the 23 of June, but the actual partying takes place on its eve. It’s the only time of the year when you see live music, fireworks and lots of people dancing on the streets.
7. Before you go to the cinema, you have to check if the film is in the French, German, or the original version.
This story was produced through the travel journalism programs at MatadorU.
8. You greet people with “Moien,” but continue the conversation in your language of choice.
Luxembourgish language does exist, to the surprise of many, and it is one of the three official languages of the Grand Duchy. However few of the foreigners who live here make the effort to learn it, as they can get by with one of the other two official languages — French or German.
9. You buy a lot of low-cost flights to places in Europe, but you can never remember what country they’re departing from.
In addition to having an airport of its own, Luxembourg is close to two other airports — Charleroi in Belgium, and Frankfurt Hahn in Germany, where low-cost airlines operate. Both of them are located at two hours distance, and there are direct buses connecting both of them to the city.
Once you’ve bought all the tickets, everything becomes too convenient to remember the details.
10. You’re shocked every time you go to a big city and see the amount of people at a pedestrian crossing.
There’s more people waiting to cross the street in Paris than there are people just walking around in Luxembourg.
11. You’re totally considering the idea of working in one country and living in another.
Half of your colleagues commute daily from the neighbouring countries to work. Elsewhere, the idea might seem extravagant to say the least. In Luxembourg though, it’s part of ordinary life.