Once upon a time in Germany, there were two colleagues. Both were not native-born Germans.
Do you also have that benefit of tasting the world from so many points of view?
The first of them came to Germany at the time of puberty from the former USSR corner. Among many other things I remember from our first discussions while he was helping me solve some SAP mystery, was that he showed a certain healthy amount of distrust to “all those young men“ coming to Germany from all around the world. I paid close attention to it. As an ex-Medicin sans Frontieres humanitarian, I developed a sharp ear for those kind of comments, yet I managed not to get heartbroken anymore from all the prejudices people mouthed. So I listened, yet refrained from commenting.
Months later and after rather turmoil of personnel changes in our department, a new colleague joined. It was a young man that came to Germany around the age of ten from Asia.
The first mentioned colleague, possessing the combination of trying to hold things under control and trying to help (oh boy, how I know this mixture of urges and how it leaves you drained at the end) was helping the new colleague out, the same way he helped all of us newcomers. The two of them were slowly getting to know each other, only to become quite inseparable buddies later. I still remember their lunch-hunting in Aldi during Mittagsessenpause and how I joined them now and then.
Everyone who seeks refuge, help, or simply better life the way the families of both of those colleagues surely did in the past, even though under very different circumstances, are not a crowd. Those are single-person-stories.
We better be open-minded. What if the crowd, once broken down, provides us with a good friend?
How do we justify our childish fears then?