“Bitte” is the ‘magic word’ in German.

And we need some magic. While North Korea has ratified the UN Convention of the Rights of People with Disabilities, Ireland has not – remaining the only EU country not to have done so.


“Bitte” is one of these words you cannot translate into English out of context. It’s actually a great German word to learn because it means so many different things that you can use it in almost any context.

It can mean “please” (when you’re asking someone for something), “you’re welcome” (as a response to “thank you”), “here you go” (when you’re handing over an item to another person), “may I help you?” (for example if you are talking to a customer), “pardon?” (when you didn’t hear or didn’t understand something), “you are not serious!”  (when someone does something he shouldn’t be doing), …

But as with every other word, there comes a time when it’s of no use because it doesn’t get you anywhere, when its purpose can’t be achieved.

That’s the time you roll up your sleeves, spit into your hands, neither look left nor right but focus on the task on hand.

This is where I am. At the beginning. Of every day.

Rosenstolz, Du bist am Leben – not one of their most famous songs, but I really like the lyrics and the rhythm that makes me think of spinning around until I get dizzy…