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I am writing an email in German to an old friend, a colleague from a former job. I am trying to set up a meeting with him when I am going to be in town. I'd like to say that it would be great to catch up and find out how he has been over the past few years. What is the proper way to say the verb "to catch up" in German in this context?

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den neusten Klatsch austauschen – Robert Jan 7 '14 at 2:27
Idiomatic German is "ein Bier trinken" ;) – Carsten S Jan 7 '14 at 3:08
Please for the next time try to explain what exactly ”to catch up“ is meaning. I'm german native-speaker and never before heard this phrase, so without knowing what it means it is hard to translate. – Hubert Schölnast Jan 8 '14 at 12:47
@CarstenSchultz: Was machen Leute wie ich, die kein Bier trinken? – Hubert Schölnast Jan 8 '14 at 12:49
@HubertSchölnast Einen Kaffee oder Tee trinken. – krolley Jan 30 '14 at 15:32

I don't know of any particular German verb that I would use for that. There is "[sich gegenseitig] auf den neuesten Stand bringen" but this sounds a bit formal/businesslike IMO (I would use that to describe a briefing at work about the current situation).

My personal choice would be something like "darüber plaudern/quatschen, was wir die letzte Zeit so gemacht haben" (chat about what we did recently.

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