Cranky Driver

Trying to Make the Driving World a Little Less Annoying

Tag: Germany (Page 1 of 2)

Berlin Hauptbahnhof

Versus 2: Car vs Train

There’s nothing like the smell of a burning red project at work as you leave it behind for vacation. Unfortunately, I’m one of those worrying conscientious types so to take my mind off my disaster, I tried to figure out which is the most relaxing way to travel across Germany for vacation.

This is actually a trick question because for me there is no relaxing way to travel across Germany.

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The Not So Green Man

Crossy Kids

My kids (10-, 6-year-olds) sometimes walk 1 km to school here in Germany, and it freaks me out. That’s because we Americans never let our kids out of an adult’s sight, and because I have no idea how far 1 km1 is. German kids here walk or ride their bikes and scooters to school, which must mean German parents think this is normal, or they need to be locked up.

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German Traffic Signs

Rechts vor Links

Germans must be anti-American. Germans do not celebrate the 4th of July, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, or Thanksgiving. And while Germany has a baseball league, is the home of the ancestral hot dog, and allows a few Chevys, it has no apple pie (it does, however, have Apfelstrudel, Apfelstreusel, Apfelkuchen, Apfeltasche, and even McDonald’s original tongue-scalding hot apple pockets).

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Ravensburg License Plate

Are You TÜV Enough?

[Update 2016-06-25: accidentally deleted this post, and lost some info posting it back. Oops.]

It took a while, but I finally got my approval from TÜV (Technischer Überwachungsverein) for my 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX STI. This is necessary to register my car in Germany. A car requires this approval every two years.

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All Is Well Again

The world certainly doesn’t seem well, but my little part of it got significantly better last night. I was finally able to drive my car in Germany. Yesterday, after weeks of trying, I got the person helping me to understand what I needed for insurance. So as soon as I got home, I gassed up the car.

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Well, Hallo, Deutschland

After months of stress (and weeks more of it to come), I’ve finally arrived in Germany for a two-year assignment. This is my third time living in Germany, and the first with children.

Living out of suitcases for weeks, sleeping on the floor of an empty apartment, getting sick because I seem to be always outside in the cold, dreary German winter, it’s going about as well I had expected. The kids, who are attending German public school, haven’t even mentioned “red rum” in days, which is a relief, considering the trauma we put them through of changing homes, schools, countries, and languages.

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Busted!

I got a traffic ticket the other day. A very special traffic ticket. It was delivered to me with love and care from Germany through registered mail. How thoughtful of the German government!

What was the ticket for? Well, it wasn’t for speeding on the unlimited autobahn. It was for following too closely on the A96 autobahn to Lindau.

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RUF Mich An

VRROOOooommmmm…

“Wow, that Porsche was not doing 70!” exclaimed my wife as a white Porsche zoomed by in the other direction. The speed limit here was 70 kph.

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Back to the ’Bahn

I’ve just returned from a week long trip from Germany, and experienced something that makes me even crankier than driving—flying through Charles de Gaulle (CDG) airport in Paris.

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German Engineering for Children

Some German wise guy once said something about time being relative. One German example I have of relative time is my first apartment in Germany. My neighbors in the building kept referring to my apartment as one of the “new” ones. Later I found out it’s because my part of the building, which was actually once the outer wall of the city, was built in the 1700s, a couple hundred years later than the rest of the building. The old stone bridge across from my apartment was completed around 1146AD, and carries traffic daily over the Danube river. The Germans know old.

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