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Richard in Cincy

interesting story about Grüß Gott...

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Joined: Dec 12, 2005

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Posted to Thread #24567 at 2:32 pm on Jun 27, 2013

Grüß Gott...(Grooose Got) Which literally means "Greet God"

Multicultural awareness tip: ALWAYS reply with this greeting when you enter a shop and the shopkeeper says it to you. You are always greeted upon entering a Viennese shop and it is considered polite and proper form to respond in kind. If you don't (which many foreign tourists don't), you will be considered rude and sometimes be treated brusquely as a result.

I was talking with an elderly lady on the train when I was in college, this was many years ago when the WWII generation were still very much out and about. She talked about her father having a "Grüß Gott" shop which I didn't understand. She told me the Grüß Gott shops were the ones who still greeted their customers that way instead of with the preferred Heil "You Know Who". It was a small act of defiance when few were left that wouldn't get you thrown into the KZL.

Also, younger Austrians are now saying "Servus" instead of Grüß Gott these days, which they consider old, fusty, antiquated, and severely unhip.

And another Austrianism you'll encounter: Auf Wiederschauen [look at you again] instead of Auf Wiedersehen [see you again].


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