Sunday, November 1, 2009


Here we are!
We have officially been in Germany for 2 months now, is that it? It feels like so much longer. So, I've come up with a list of some things you need to know before you come to Germany. We didn't really know these things. They may have been eluded to by others, but we didn't really grasp the full understanding. I think it's one of those things no one can tell you, because really you have to figure it out on your own.
Top 4 things to know BEFORE you move to Germany

1. When you're thirsty DO NOT drink the German water. After a long walk in the woods and up to the top of a Castle ruin everyone was thirsty. So proud to hear them talk about how thirsty they were, not for soda or kool-aid, but water! Down to the shop and get a bottle of water..... it's water with carbonation and a direct quote from 3 of the 4 kids "it is disgusting!" Toben didn't say it was bad, but he also refused to drink it. I'll have to agree with them. And after 3 tries with different bottled "water" we all came to the same conclusion. Maybe it's one of those things that will grow on you with time, but I'm not counting on it.

2. Bring a milk pail with you. The Commissary here is much like the one in Texas or any other Grocery store that you might shop at, probably with one exception and that would be the milk. First off you can not get a gallon of milk. They only sell it in 1/2 gallon containers and my guess is because they don't want you to actually think that your milk is $4 a gallon. It's a 1/2 gallon for $2. So when our 70 year old neighbor Walter insisted on taking Martin to get milk from the farmer I was all for it. Only one problem, where to get the milk pail. Lucky for us Walter let us borrow his and has since found one for us to keep. (More to come about our helpful neighbor Walter later)

3. Less is not always more. Number three is not for the weak stomach. And my apologies for the disgusting nature of this. Germany is an amazingly Eco friendly country. Trash is carefully separated and recycled from each and every household. This also includes water conservation. Now I can see how in the US the toilet may seem like a water waster, but I am here to tell you IT'S NOT. And the reason is because it helps flush everything down! If you can imagine 80% less water in the toilet, now imagine you just used the toilet. Where does it all go? Let me tell you, it goes all over the porcelain and most houses have a toilet brush next to the toilet so that you can help everything go down. Personally I think we need to call the guy from Dirty Jobs. You get the idea. It's just not right!

4. Transformers are your friends. Not having ever lived overseas I had almost no experience with voltage and assumed all you need to plug something in was a little adapter. Boy was I wrong. There is a 20 lb box you must (find) plug in the wall and then plug in your appliance. I thought maybe some of our appliances might be duel voltage where you can plug it into the little adapter. No. That would be too easy. I learned the hard way, and that's why I say transformers are your friends. Just plug everything into the big heavy box. Why you ask? Because you'll blow it up if you don't. Just ask my sewing machine and she'll tell you.


Scott said...

Great post. Thanks for all the info. I knew they were econologically friendly but didn't realize how deep they are into it. As for the toilet - it could be worse - like a true composting toilet -

Have fun ;-)

The Roots

Scott said...

econologically? I made a new word :-)

Christie said...

RIP little Pfaff...your sister in Kentucky is on her way to the sewing machine's truly sad that you had to leave this world so soon...:-(
On a lighter note...I'm thrilled that you have a blog dear Sarah! I think that you've inspired me to blog again! Thank you...I will visit often and I'll bring coffee next time!

Branch Family said...

YAY!! I love that you are blogging! Look forward to more things about you and your family! Miss you!!

Dave & Jerian Pahs said...

Wow! Blogging, you are pretty high tech. More than me I just typed a whole message and then lost it trying to figure out if I needed to use a profile or something and lost it. Uggh!

Anyway, we have the whole trash thing too, I hate separating out my organics and then dumping them, it is awful. we do not have the water thing though, I would not doubt it is on Canada's horizon.

I wondered about the artsy water bottle picture but now it all makes sense. That water is pretty disgusting, I agree with the kids :)

Ok now I am really off to do school with the kids, talk to you soon. Jerian (in case the posting thing doesn't show who I am)

stella g. said...

yay! reading this made me love how cute your family is under the American flag. and be amazed at how little luggage you seem to be carrying. and your water story made me laugh because i did the same thing when i was in Germany and almost spit the water across the room after my first sip. and, well, your transformer mishap just made me sad. poor, poor sewing machine...

speaking of sewing. Lindsay and i were desperate for your help this afternoon as we tried to free motion on her quilt. no good. we couldn't figure it out. but on a lighter note, i did bid on a Pfaff on ebay and will find out in 51 minutes if it's mine!

ok, this wins for longest comment ever. can you tell i miss you?