Are you a glass half full person or a half empty person?
Personally I believe myself to be a person with PMA - positive mental attitude, a pint glass containing only half a pint is a sad situation it's true, but to me it's half full and not half empty (unless I'm deperate for someone to top it up I guess...
The world has, however, far too many people who suck the joy out of life and bring the shadow of their gloom with them wherever they go.
One such person is someone I know here in Germany (I hesitate to use the word friend, for fear that her negativity infect me), at the moment on her facebook page her status is a rant about how miserable the people of Essen are and why don't they smile at her? Various people have since commented to her that maybe if she lightened up so would the other people.
However she's not the first to make such a comment.
My parents have been coming to Germany twice a year since we moved here and every time they're here they spend most of their time walking my dog (they love it, not sure about Logan, he's one lazy hound) consequently they meet lots of other people out walking.
My parents are not known for their loquaciousness (don't you just love a computer that helps you with definitions and spelling?) but they are unfailingly polite (terribly British) and will always say 'hello' when out walking in England, so we've retrained them to say 'Morgan' or 'guten Tag' when they're here but they have commented that people here don't always respond - whereas in the UK everyone will respond (the British kneejerk reaction is to be polite at all costs).
This morning I walked Logan along the river, well I walked along it and he paddled in it (stupid dog - I think he's part hippo) and despite the fact that I was listening to music as I walked, I made a point of greeting everyone who dared to walk towards me with a happy smile and a chirpy 'morgan' - and they all responded (maybe they thought I'd set the mad dog on them if they didn't).
I often run with Logan and again, whenever I pass someone I will always say (ok, gasp) 'morgan' and they will mostly respond likewise.
For me it's not about being polite - although it was in the beginning, now it's a challenge. Having had people 'complaining' that the Germans don't always offer greetings, I'm determined to get in there first and almost dare them not to respond to me.
As I put on Facebook today 'Verena has been out 'morgan'-ing the Germans', I'm just thankful we don't live in an area like Nürnberg where they say 'Gruss Gott', that I would struggle with!