SJ on the Move

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Top 10 Things we will miss about Germany

10) Having tax and tip already included in the bill : One of the nice things about purchasing things here is that the price is the price. The Value Added Tax is already included, and tipping is much less extensive than the U.S. (usually rounding up to the nearest Euro, or 10% maximum).
9) Not having a lot of "stuff" to worry about and clean up : Since we were 'only' able to bring 6 suitcases over for our 6 month odyssey, we didn't have a lot of extra "stuff". So, we were able to avoid the plague of clutter.
8) 60 cent ice cream cones : During the month of July, when the thermometer was regularly in the 90's, the ice cream place near our house with 60 cent ice cream cones was a near daily visit.
7) Having a nice playground with kids nearby : We do have a reasonably nice playground near our house in Boston, but there are rarely any kids SJ's age around, and even rarer are there parents around. The playground here in Bonn was a good place for SJ to play with other kids her age, as well as for her parents to interact with other parents.
6) The "Smalltown USA" feel : While it is very counterintuitive, manytimes Bonn felt like the kind of small towns you see depicted on television and the movies. They often had hokey little festivals on the weekends with bands that were clearly thrown together from all over the age spectrum, but it was fun. We half expected to see Taylor from the Gilmore Girls walking around selling cotton candy.
5) Sunday morning trips to Mr. Baker : One of the few places open on Sunday, we would walk to the dead quiet pedestrian zones on Sunday morning to allow SJ to run around as well as enjoy sitting in an outdoor cafe, enjoying a pastry and a latte macchiato.
4) New foods : While there were certainly lots of foods that we missed in the U.S., there were a lot of new things that we really enjoying trying and (for the most part) enjoying here in Europe.
3) Really relaxing weekends : On those weekends where we didn't go somewhere, the time was incredibly peaceful and relaxing. Since the stores aren't open, you don't spend your Sunday running errands. Since we also had a smaller place with less stuff, we didn't have to spend nearly as much time working around the house on weekends.
2) Weekend adventures : Being so close to the train station made it very easy for us to go lots of interesting places on the weekends. While all the travelling was tiring at times, we really enjoyed getting to see so much during our time here. We also really enjoyed being able to have something to do on the weekend that was worth looking forward to.
1) Our new and old friends in Bonn : There have been many people who have rotated through Boston and then returned to Bonn, so in coming to Bonn we already had a number of friends to become reacquainted with. We also had a chance to make new friends, from work, or the playground, or the English language playgroup that SJ took part in.


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