02 August 2013

Barefoot in Tübingen

I was in Tübingen last June, for the third time. This was because there was a conference in which I participated; and so I was there again. Unlike my previous visits, however, it wasn't in the middle of winter. And perhaps because the weather permitted it, I saw so many people walking barefoot. I saw so many of them that I really wondered what was going on.

Anyway, I later learned that there is a high proportion of people who are believers of the Green Party in Tübingen. Some people call them tree-huggers, but these perhaps are the people who are more counter-cultural than not. I saw several of them, walking barefoot, wearing these long baggy pants, and had the quintessential dreadlocks.

I guess when one's politics is strong enough, then one can be driven into wearing these things. As with religion, every belief can be strong enough to push one person to act in a certain way. Whether it is wearing the hijab, or not wearing shoes.

Anyway, I really have no problem with that. I guess I was just surprised to see a very medieval town, filled with people who have rather very progressive beliefs. But then again, there's a large university in town, so perhaps it isn't surprising that the population is like that.


  1. I find people who spend too much time fitting the stereotype (i.e. barefoot, dreadlocks, etc.) are hard to take seriously. Maybe that's just the cynical me.

    1. Zhu,

      I agree. Somehow, I cannot shake off the idea that this is just a phase and that they will grow out of it.