While the whole of Europe has fallen into football fever, with games on every night and the countries battling it out over a black and white ball in the Ukraine and Poland I feel a little left out but with no real desire to join in.
Being half German and half Irish I am often questioned about my loyalties and I always have to acknowledge that my heart goes out for the guys in green, the underdogs of the game. It’s not that I am opposed to the German team winning and I have to admit that when they beat the Dutch team so well deserved last night I was happy to know that they will definitely go through to the next round. But knowing how badly the Irish played against Croatia and knowing that they have yet to play two of the strongest teams in the game, I have little hope they will make it to round two, so my feelings of Irish patriotism feels a bit let down.
So as the two countries battle it out on the international arena the two sides of me often have battles within my personality. Since my parents are divorced my mothers influences are stronger when it comes to things that can be learned. Organization, cleanliness and the way I like to decorate my home are good examples of qualities I think as being “more German”, my timekeeping inabilities, love or words and openness when it comes to strangers I believe to be more the Irish me.
I also find it interesting that as a child growing up in Dublin and even now as an adult living here again I can see my Germaness much clearer, just like when I was a teenager and student in Germany I was very aware of my Irishness. It is as if being in the other country magnifies the other side of me, but no matter where I am I am always me and never seem to fit in 100%. Oddly enough it doesn’t bother me and I am quite happy to be a jigsaw piece that doesn’t slide into place or a coin that always lands the wrong way up as I am happy in myself and like the sparks that fly when my two personalities rub against each other, in makes for very interesting living.
So as the lads in green are probably preparing for this important battle in the football station so far from home, and a flip of a coin decides who gets to kick the ball first, I will cheer for them wholeheartedly while keeping my German side at bay that could be looking for more attention. But as I believe the black, red and gold they will definitely be kicking the ball all the way to the top, my green, white and gold flies high hoping the underdog will pull through and last a while longer.