Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Only in Germany PS

If you haven't read my last post (Only in Germany), you should go back and read that first. This is a PS on that.

Actually, I'd like to share an antithesis to my last post (or is it?). Here's the story:

I don't have a car. I walk to school, church, grocery store, Bible Study, etc. It's pretty much the only exercise I get and it's pretty good. I mean, I walk about 30-60 minutes a day, depending on how many times I have to go to school in one day. I rely on this walking since I have finally gotten to that age where I can't eat whatever I want without any physical effects. And since I haven't learned to control the eating (especially my consumption of chocolate over here), I need all the walking I can get. And since tonight was a nice night out, I didn't take the offer of a ride home after Bible Study.

So....Picture it, Germany, 2010.... I was walking across my quaint little town nestled in the Black Forest on a cool spring night. I passed the main street section of town with all its shops closed (as they all do at about 6 pm, except on Wednesdays when they close at noon). As I was approaching one of the many inns in town I thought I heard something...a little out of the ordinary. I thought I heard singing. So, I stopped, right across the street from the inn and listened. Yes, there was a choir singing, it seemed to come from the windows of a room on the second floor, a meeting room probably. It was a tune I knew....from....Mary Poppins? Oh yes, there was a choir singing, in English. "ChimmChimminee, ChimmChimminee, ChimmChimm Charee." I stood there stunned, until I burst out in laughter and giggled the rest of the way home.

I love walking thru Kandern! It's worth turning down rides all the time!

Today was also a great day because I tried my new tea I bought yesterday. Mango PassionFruit Black Tea. It's called Havana Moon and it is GOOOOOOOD!

Good night all~!
PS. Extra points to the person who can find the reference to an excellent tv show from the 80s in this post...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Only in Germany!

I’ve had many “only in Germany” moments in the last few weeks and I had to share them with you. I hope you will have as much fun reading about them as I have living them….

In this area of Germany, during the early spring, we see a great frog migration. When fields come up to roads or highways, they put up plastic sheeting walls to keep the frogs from jumping into the street (then people come by and collect them and take them across the street to continue their migration!). There are signs out of the highway to remind you to be careful not to roadkill the frogs. A couple weeks ago I was walking home from school one evening after a recital. I was quite startled when, out of the corner of my eye I saw something moving. When I collected myself, I looked down at the sidewalk to see the bottom half of a frog. He had poked his head into a grate in the sidewalk and gotten stuck. So there he was struggling to get free and all I could do was laugh at the sight, flailing frog legs desperate for freedom. No, I didn’t help free him, I just laughed and kept walking, later wishing I had taken out the camera to take a pic to share with you. Oh well, next time.

One morning I was walking to school exceptionally early because we had pre-school meetings. As I walked through the parking lot at the grocery store on the way to school I experienced one of those moments where you shake your head, chuckle a bit and say “only in Germany!” There was a man literally vacuuming the parking lot at the grocery story…vacuuming! Sure, it was an outdoor type vacuum, not a normal home appliance, but still. They are soo clean over here in Germany, I think the phrase “Cleanliness is next to godliness” surely originated here, and they still live by it. The parking lot!

Above you see a lovely picture of my friends and I as we were arriving to Good Friday service at my church. Only in Germany can you arrive at church on Good Friday to be welcomed by a beer truck parked by the entrance! OK, its not normally there, but we’d rented out the building the day before for a Red Cross blood drive and they’d left it there. This week, I am at a retreat for my mission (TeachBeyond) and we are spending our time together at a Christian Conference Center. I had to laugh when I went down the hall with the dining rooms to see a full beverage fridge stocked with beers and wines. Only in Germany would you find a Christian Conference Center fully stocked with alcoholic beverages…