Continued from our last list on the fun / interesting differences between our new home and our old one.. things that strike our fancy and might strike yours as well. Again, this list is simply meant to document the little nuances of our life here… nuances that will one day appear completely normal and may be a struggle to remember.
- Few if any bumper stickers (just noticed that today)
- Don’t mess with the flowers in someone’s yard (even to catch a bug)… they get a little nervous that their very hard work will be destroyed (naturally)
- You don’t really need to lock your bike up… at least most people here don’t
- Leave an item behind at the park? Or lose it on a walk? No worries, someone has probably hung it up on a nearby post so you can retrieve it (rather than stealing it 🙂 how nice)
- Bicyclers have the right of way. They actually do. Not just on paper. No one throws things at bicyclers. Or yells things. They just move and drive around you.
- “American” salad dressing = a version of Thousand Island
- You won’t find any dings or rust on German cars! Cars with defaults are considered un-fit and removed from the German market and can’t be registered. No worries though. Poland, we hear, purchases the “perfectly fine” running rejected German cars.
- We’ve heard it said, “Germans have these three priorities in this order: Their car, their dog, their kids.”
- Potato Chip Flavors- African (tastes like bbq), Paprika, Western, Ketchup
- Desserts. Lots and lots of desserts
- Kinder-Geld: Government money for each child you have! Doesn’t matter your school grades, their school grades, your income… it’s just a gift from the government for having children.
- Have too much squash in your garden? No worries. Your kind German neighbors feel it is their loving neighborly duty to let you know. They will also lovingly let you know any other cultural faux paus you may be mistaking. Don’t take it personal. See it as love. Truly. (And if you humble yourself… you’ll see that it really is helpful)
- Greet someone as you pass them on the street… watch them light up!
- Take cute little kids (like Corban and Hannah) wherever you go… Germans give lots of attention to cutey pie little kiddos (including free candy bars and deli samples that no one else seems to get).
- Run the local “fast food” restaurant and want to go on vacation? Shoot, go! Just close down for two weeks. You’re the sole person responsible for registering people in the town so they can get trash cans and visas… and you need a vacation too? Of course! GO! Take a week even 🙂 Germans have a good habit of resting from their work… something we do appreciate)
- Rain? What rain? Life goes on regardless (as it should). Seattle folks will appreciate this.
- Chocolate chips? Not here. Cookies have chocolate CHUNKS… mostly from cut up chocolate bars. Hey, we’ll take it!