Ralph Orlowski via Reuters
GERMANY – After 16 years in the chancellery, it is time to step down from power for Angela Merkel. But while her successor Olaf Scholz has just been elected chancellor by the German Parliament on Wednesday, December 8, the future of what has often been described as “the most powerful woman in the world” is still very uncertain.
For years, Angela Merkel never wanted to talk about her withdrawal from power, even though she announced that she would not stand for re-election in 2018. Will she be Gerhard Schröder, chancellor from 1998 to 2005 , join the lobbies community? Will she write her memoirs like Helmut Kohl, her mentor and chancellor from 1982 to 1998?
Since this summer, Angela Merkel has (partially) lifted the veil on what she plans to do once she retires: rest and leave the responsibility of public affairs to her successor. “And I think I’m going to like it a lot,” she said during a visit to Washington in July.
She then mentioned, not without humor, that she was going to “try to read something”. “Then my eyes will close because I’m tired, then I’ll get some sleep, and we’ll see what happens,” she said.
“I have decided that I will not do anything to start”
Last September, she spoke a little more about her future life: “I have never had a normal work day and … I naturally stopped wondering what interested me most besides politics.” “I have reached the age of 67, I do not have an indefinite time in front of me,” she continued. It means I want to think carefully about what I want to do in the next phase of my life. ”
“Do I want to write, speak, hike, stay home, see the world? I have decided that I will not do anything to begin with, then I will see what I will do next, ”she repeated.
Gardening could be one of his hobbies. In 2013, she confessed to the magazine Colorful that she really enjoyed gardening on Sundays, especially planting potatoes. But would that be enough for this woman who has lived 16 years at the head of a state like Germany? In September, when Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie invited her to her country, she replied that she might be traveling to African countries. Or will she go to the Rockies in the United States, her dream, as she had stated in the Spiegel?
In any case, with a pension of 15,000 euros per month – which did not fail to attract criticism – and a staff of nine full-time people, little chance that Angela Merkel remains idle.
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