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Experts - Kristiane Backer

Kristiane Backer is living today in London. I was born in the beautiful harbour city of Hamburg in Germany.

My professional life began at 21 when I joined Radio Hamburg for a two- year training “volontariat” as a radio journalist. By the time this was over I was chosen out of thousands of hopeful applicants as the first German presenter for the music television station MTV Europe.
There was one condition: a move to swinging London, a city I began to love at first sight and still do.

Moving to London
Unsurpassable London is a unique mix of traditional and modern. It has its own buzz. Whatever you want, London has it from cutting edge design to bespoke tailoring, Shakespeare, sacred music, intellectual lectures to street fashion or belly-dancing. Writers, actors, artists and political exiles present their books, films, paintings, ideas, opinions and complaints here. In summer during the social season people love to go to the various traditional racing, tennis and polo events where people wear funny clothes and look forward to getting a glimpse of their Queen.

It is great to be in London as long as you can afford the extortionate prices and regularly get out. Europe is only a one hour away and flights are cheap from here.

Some of my favourite countries are Morocco, with its breath taking and diverse nature, stunning architecture and warmhearted, people, Brazil, with its paradisical landscapes, enchanting people and exotic animals, Egypt, a very spiritual place, Turkey, the Subcontinent, Ireland and the Highlands of Scotland where it feels like one has left civilization behind. But much of these places is present in small corners in London such as the Arabian Peninsula around Edgeware Road or Knightsbridge, the Caribbean in Brixton, Morocco north of Nottinghill, Little India in South Hall and Chinatown in Soho where even the street signs are in Chinese.
The famous “English cuisine” has picked up due to international influence. The national dish is not the expected fish’n chips but curry, would you believe.

London has always stood for respect (not just tolerance!) towards other cultures and religions. It has graciously welcomed its guests, black, white yellow green or pocadot. You can wear a mohawk, dreadlocks or a headscarf, you are still part of London and a full member of society. The motto is integration instead of assimilation. In fact, The Queen is proud of Great Britain’s multi- cultural heritage.

In my view, as the world grows together into a global village, society is becoming multi- cultural, multi- ethnic and multi- religious. There is no way around it.

Despite occasional problems, which occur in any society, Britain is an exemplary model of this global trend.

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