Living In Germany -

Hotel_Sole_Italien_Eisdiele You’re out in town and the weather is nice, sunny and warm…

Perfect timing for a visit at one one the numerous Ice cafes along Germany’s roads…

It doesn’t matter if you walk along the pedestrian streets or you are in a busy main road, bella Italia with its yummy ice cream dreams are sprouting everywhere.

So your seated and you have the menu and you chose your cup but your little one just want a cone with a scoop of Ice-cream… or you might have just stood in line and got a one with the cold deliciousness and head to one of the many seats to sit and rest.

No sooner as you sit down with your ice-cream cone , a waitress rushes to your side… but not to ask if she can get you something else… no she informs you promptly that you have to evacuate your seat , since you only bought a cone and not an ice-cream sundae…

So what’s with that??? Why cant i sit and eat my ice-cream cone that i paid for??

Well its actually legal issue and sadly not up to the ice-cream owner.

If you buy food in Germany you only pay a 7% Sales tax on it

If you go to a restaurant your tax is 19% , the 7% for the food and the rest is the gratuity charge. That is exactly the same gratuity charge any waiter will tell you is included in the bill. But that is not a tip,

That’s why the prices at the ice-cream stand and sit down cafe are different.

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It’s hot outside and you made your way into one of the many cafes or beer gardens in Germany, and while you are familiar with the common liquor and cocktail names, you find a lot of names you have never heard of.

So let’s dive right in:

BeertentOne word you need to get yourself familiar with is “Schorle” you may know that as spritz.

Schorle is actually a mixed Drink (half and half) and depending on what it is mixed with you may get quite the different outcome. First there are the sweet “Suesse” Schorle wich means it has sweet Lemon soda and the sour “Sauere” Schorle thatgets mixed with sparkly water.

You can order a:

· Fruit Schorle = half Fruit juice – half sparkling water

· Apfel Schorle = half Apple juice –half sparkling water

· Suesse Weinschorle = half Lemon Soda – half white or red wine

· Saure Weinschorle = half sparkling water – half white or red wine

Another Drink we love to mix is Beer

Most common one would be the Radler, a mix between lemon soda and beer (usually Pils), but we don’t stop there. Also well liked is Cola – Beer or Beer mixed with Fruit juices like Banana juice. Another Beer mixed Drink is the so called “Berliner Weisse”. If you like it sweet it just may be the perfect drink for you! Traditionally the beer is mixed with either Raspberry Syrup for the red ones or Sweet Woodruft “Waldmeister” Syrup for the green drinks.

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I wrote this piece, having the military family and the lifestyle that goes along with it, in mind. Here it goes; I would like to say a couple lines about pet adoptions.

059 This is not meant as criticism of people but more as a reminder what to look for. I know from experience there is nothing greater than having a fury companion, or to see your children growing up with that. Pets bring so much to a family and can teach important things like responsibility and compassion.
BUT before you decide to add a furry companion to your family you should really sit down and list the pros and cons of taking that next step. If you are a fan of this page, you are very likely a military member stationed in Germany, so the first question on your check list has to be: will I have the money to ship my pet, or board it in case of family emergencies?
The ASPCA estimates first year costs for a dog or cat will total over 1000$, while costs for a guinea pig could reach 700$. Expenses for Fish or birds could top 200$.
You should count on, to be save, about 2k in transport costs (you may have to board the pet somewhere, if they aren’t allowed to fly with you because of the heat or something).
Next point, you are in Europe!!! The best and probably only time you get to explore the old world!!! Are you willing to board your pet when you take trips? Be aware that some pets like reptiles, fish or birds can’t be transported back to the states, and you will have to find them a new home before going back! Leaving an animal behind is a crime in Germany and if you are caught, they will fine you. Then the family question, do you have small kids or plan on having kids soon? Please remember if your already stressed and busy with kids, a pet will only add to that. Dogs will need walks, and it’s against housing regs and German law to just lock them on the yard or balcony. A cat if outdoors needs to be current on all her shots and frequent worm treatments and may need vet visits for getting into cat fights, indoor cats need their litter boxes (1 per cat at least) at a kids save place, cleaned.
I know a lot of parents think its special for a baby to grow up with a puppy, but in all reality, that kiddo won’t remember a thing and unless you are really committed and up for challenge, don’t like a good night sleep or have a second adult around at all times to help, save yourself the trouble. Of course it’s doable… everything really is, but more often than not the parents get too stressed with the situation and the pet gets the shorter end of the stick.

 

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vatertagVatertag – Father’s Day in Germany

Father’s Day in Germany is celebrated differently from other parts of the world. It is always celebrated on Ascension Day (the Thursday forty days after Easter), which is a federal holiday. Originally, during the middle Ages, Father’s Day was a religious celebration to honor God the Father.

While in many countries the Father’s Day ritual involves little more than writing a card and giving the gift of a new pair of socks — with breakfast in bed if the father is especially lucky — the Germans have turned it into a true holiday for the country’s men. They are granted carte blanche to get riotously rip-roaring drunk.

Regionally, it is also called men’s day, Männertag, or gentlemen’s day, Herrentag. It is tradition to do a males-only hiking tour with one or more smaller wagons, Bollerwagen, pulled by manpower. In the wagons are wine, beer or schnapps and traditional regional food, Hausmannskost.

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The Ice Saints May is a strange weather month in Northern Europe. The past few Aprils in Frankfurt have had a high number of quite warm and sunny days, even if they start out with cool temperatures in the mornings. As May began, however, the temperatures have headed south, or, gone down. You have the heat running, and the wind and rain have had an extra cold bite whenever you leave the house. This has a long tradition in Europe, and it has a name. The “Eisheiligen” refers to a period in May when, according to popular farmers’ lore, the weather is still too unstable to plant crops because of the danger of frost.

The Ice Saints (Eisheilige in German, les Saints de Glace in France) is a name given to St. Mamertus, St. Pancras, and St. Servatius in Flemish, French, Dutch, Hungarian, German, Austrian, Polish, Swiss and Croatian folklore. They are so named because their feast days fall on the days of May 11, May 12, and May 13 respectively. In Poland and the Czech Republic, the Ice Saints are St. Pancras, St. Servatus and St. Boniface of Tarsus (i.e., May 12 to May 14). To the Poles, the trio are known collectively as zimni ogrodnicy (cold gardeners), and are followed by zimna Zośka (cold Sophias) on the feast day of St. Sophia which falls on May 15. In Czech, the three saints are collectively referred to as “ledoví muži” (ice-men or icy men), and Sophia is known as “Žofie, ledová žena” (Sophia, the ice-woman). The period from May 12 to May 15 was noted to bring a brief spell of colder weather in many years, including the last nightly frosts of the spring, in the Northern Hemisphere under the Julian calendar. The introduction of the Gregorian calendar in 1582 involved skipping 10 days in the calendar, so that the equivalent days from the climatic point of view became May 22–25.

 

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