It's the little differences

Almost two weeks in Germany hasn’t made me world weary but it’s given me a new perspective on some things. The town I’m in is very pedestrian friendly with a lot of stuff in walking distance. About 2km to the office so I sometimes walk and sometimes share a cab. The train system is excellent and made for a pleasurable trip to Köln to see the cathedral. Actually Die Bahn was late a couple of times. Where’s Mussolini when you really need him? That joke got exactly zero laughs here.

No shortage of good, modestly priced restaurants to eat in and suprisingly there are more Italian eateries than any other. I rarely pay more than five Euros for lunch in the excellent cafeteria that DHL shares with the Dell distribution center and ten for dinner and usually less.

Euro coins are hard to get used to. No bills smaller than a five with one and two Euro coins. One Euro coins are smaller than a fifty cent piece though the edges are different and it’s two tone silver and brass instead of brass color. I’m just now the the point I don’t look like a bumbling idiot when they ask for my money in a store.

Europeans really value privacy in public bathroom stalls. You don’t get a flimsy partition wall that has a foot gap at the floor and barely above eye level at the top, you get a fully enclosed space with regular interior building walls and a full entry door with a proper lock and handle that barely has an air gap at the bottom. A fortress of solitude. Just too bad I don’t have any US papers to read here. There’s the Sunday Times but it costs five Euros and doesn’t have funny pages.

I grew up thinking that Europeans were all artsy and thought they were better than us redneck 'murricans but they have pedestrian tastes too. The best example I saw was the theater marquee, Garfield, Der Film. They’s just as lowbrow as us :smiley:

Lots of other things like no ice dispensers at soda fountains and Mercedes Benz taxis but Olaf is glaring at me to get back to work. I haven’t bothered to get a 0,11 Kilo mit Käse but I will try to find a mas kreg.

I like those bathrooms

I was in one of those enclosed bathrooms in France last spring. The light was on a timer and kept going out. The first time it happened really freaked me and I screamed. The light came back on. I noticed a button of the wall. When the lights went off again, I fumbled for the button and turned them back on. It really made good sense not to waste electricity.

It’s amazing the subtle differences. I also missed ice – especially for my tea. But I have never seen so many flowers as I saw in Germany. And in Scandanavia everything is so clean!

If I had my life to live over, I would do much more travelling.

Have fun!

Was ist las “choo-choo?” Dumkopf Amerikan!

Yeah, the trains are eletric. It’s all pretty cool to me as I haven’t done much train travel to speak of. I had to work today but will probably head to Heidelberg tomorrow. The Germans all tell me it’s strictly a tourist town but it was the only one not bombed in WWII. With any luck I may get to take all of next weekend off to go on an overnight trip before I fly home. It’s been a long trip and I really miss my wife.

Rainy now, better than hot I suppose. I had to go to the office today and havent’ had a chance to eat yet, it’s 4:00 PM, so I’m off to the gasthaus or the Italian place across the way. I’ve managed to avoid American stuff except for Coca-Cola - it’s in the mini bar which is free - and a Haagen Daaz at the train station. I hit the gummi bear store and got some cappucino gummis, half are coffee and half are cream. I got some special treats for TheLadyLion but mum’s the word on that. :wink: