Germany Update (No. 2)

Well, we are settled into our new home and just have a few odds and ends to finish up. I will post a tour here very soon. Our classes are back in full swing for both Paul and I and they are keeping us very busy. I was supposed to write this post a month ago, but time flies...

So, before another month passes and I start to forget, here is an update of what we have discovered after living in Germany for seven months.

We were able to buy a car in October which has been a total lifesaver! It is a 2000 silver Ford Fiesta. Biking everywhere was an adventure during the summer, but once the temperatures started dropping, it quickly stopped being so fun. Well, honestly, biking home with groceries was never fun! After a couple of months, an old leg injury started really bothering Paul. Finally, it got to the point where he could barely walk, so we decided to start looking for a car. We shopped around for a little bit, and finally found this little car. We are hopeful that it will last through the next few years. It makes getting around town so much easier and quicker!

Thankfully, we were able to change our Alberta driver licenses to German licenses without needing to take any sort of test. However, since we didn't need to take a theory or road test, we were unfamiliar with a few of the road signs. Many of the basic signs such as stop and yield, as well as traffic signals are the same, but speed limit signs looked totally different. We would be driving along, and then realize that we had no idea what the speed limit was. This resulted in a very bright flash while driving home one night. Luckily, traffic tickets are based on income levels, so it only cost us 15 euros. (phew!) Another big difference, is they do not allow right-hand turns on red lights. We didn't realize this until we noticed other cars stopping, and not turning until the light turned green. ;)

Our German has really been improving and we can now carry on short conversations fully in German. :) To increase our listening comprehension, we have started watching some children's tv shows. Our favourite one right now is Peppa the Pig. :) The slower dialog and simple themes make it easy to follow and understand.

I was remembering the other day, that there was one particular German phrase that really confused me when I first got here. The phrase was bitte schön. Bitte means please, and schön means beautiful, but when both words are put together, they can mean one of the following three things: 'You're welcome', 'how can I help you', or 'here you go'. This caused a bit of confusion when trying to order something, and the waiter asks "bitte schön?" (meaning: how can I help you?), and I thought they were saying "you're welcome." Haha! :)

I can't believe how fast these past 7 months have gone by! There has been a steep learning curve, that's for sure, but the results have been very rewarding!

Anyway, that's it for now.

Auf widersehen!


  1. I am so happy that you are settling into this new chapter of your lives. :) It is wonderful that you have this amazing opportunity and also that you now have a car. I am so happy for the both of you. May God bless you both. xox

    1. @Margaret, thank you for your kind words. :) Having a car makes getting around sooo much easier! :) xoxoxo


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