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How Lisa and I Met

I grew up in the sunny, coastal city of Durban, South Africa. After high school I made my way to London where I worked for some years before moving up to Scotland to study computing science and Spanish.

Lisa and I met at the University of Aberdeen in the final year of my computing science degree. She had come over as an exchange student to improve her English and to experience firsthand: men in kilts, haggis and deep fried Mars bars!

When I first laid eyes on her, I was convinced she was a native Spanish speaker. She has that healthy, sunned latino look. Having just got back from a year of teaching English in the south of Mexico for the British Council my Spanish was not too shabby, which gave me the boost confidence to approach her and introduce myself.

When she told me she was German and from the town of Baden-Baden, I thought she was having me on. Until that time, I'd shown very little interest in Germany, and would never have guessed that I'd attempt to learn the language, let alone land up living here!

At the time, my understanding of Germany was a mash-up of stereotypes. I imagined beer festivals where the beer was served by big breasted blonde ladies in Dirndls. The mustached men, who were not practising Freikörperkultur sported Lederhosen. Beer was merrily accompanied by Bratwurst or Schnitzel, which was washed down by more beer. Clinical football, folk music, kitsch, punctuality, work ethic, fast cars and very practical outdoor gear were some of the other things that came to mind.

My only trump card with this attractive girl was that I'd watched the hilarious BBC series Fawlty Towers and knew not to mention the war! Not much of a trump card really but that was a long time ago now and we're still living together happily in Germany.

Pukka German Inspiration

On arrival in Freiburg, I realised that in order to properly integrate and enjoy living out here, I was going to have to learn German.

Immediately I devoted considerable energy to learning the German basics as quickly as possible. I used language learning software, CDs, a multitude of books, online resources and also took German language classes.

Unfortunately, I soon noticed that the language I learnt from text books was very different to the colourful language that I heard being used socially. It frustrated me that despite all the time and energy I'd invested to improve my German, I battled to understand what seemed to be the most entertaining conversations. I also felt cramped in my ability to express my personality and bring humour into conversation. It didn't take much to realise that it was the idiomatic language, the colloquial expressions and equally important, the slang that I was missing.

Fortunately for me, I had Lisa who not only did me the favour of speaking with me in German from my first week here, but she also explained many of the useful expressions, that my private studies hadn't exposed me to.

This obvious difference between textbook German and the language used by a large percentage of the Germans I was meeting is what inspired the creation of Pukka German. My vision with Pukka German is to help learners of German to bridge this divide, which normally is only achieved with a patient native speaker at your side.

A podcast seemed the perfect solution because it allows subscribers to hear new vocabulary in context and spoken by a native speaker. It is also an excellent format for regular delivery of content, which is great for language learning.

Personal Interests

When not busy with her day job or diligently preparing the Pukka German quizzes, Lisa enjoys dancing to swing music, playing tennis and getting out into the great outdoors.

I am a freelance web designer and internet marketer and in my free time, I enjoy mountain biking and getting out for a few drinks on the weekend. Let me know if you happen to pass through Munich and we could meet up for a Weizenbier!

Both Lisa and I love to travel and are in regular debate about our next holiday destination.

Plans and Goals

Now that Lisa has her masters degree in English, Geography and Ethnology behind her she has started working in IT recruitment of all things. That's the reason we moved from Freiburg to Munich and she is currently learning the ropes and settling in.

Pukka German aside, I am busy establishing my web design and SEO business and do freelance web development work for small to medium sized businesses.

Both Lisa and I get a lot of enjoyment working on Pukka German and we plan to continue devoting energy and enthusiasm to the project to help you folks get the most out of your German experiences.

Our Mission

Our mission is to help you to learn the REAL German lingo!

We strive to help German learners enrich their German language and make learning German interesting and fun.

We focus on the social German spoken on the streets, which is often ignored in traditional teaching environments. We're especially keen on common idioms, colloquialisms and slang.

In each free podcast we explore a new theme and related vocabulary. In addition, we offer excellent value for money to our Pukka German Pro members who get unlimited access to online quizzes, transcripts and extras, which reinforce and build on the podcast material.

Who is it for?

Pukka German is for anyone who already has the German basics under their belt and who wants to speak more fluent and natural sounding German. The vocabulary we cover will be as useful for students as it is for professionals and language afficionados.

If you're a German newbie, we recommended Rocket German to get you up to speed in the language as quickly and painlessly as possible. For more information, read my Rocket German review.

Grammar can be dry, but it is essential. Pukka German should not be seen as a replacement, but as an indespensible supplement to your grammar studies. In our Amazon store you can find some grammar books and learning material that I personally recommend.

Contact Info

Pukka German
c/o Tyler Duncan
Josephsburgstr 28, 81673,
Munich, Germany

Email: info@pukkagerman.com
Skype Tel. (001) 415 315 9845

Tax No.: 06485/97088