I haven’t been blogging recently, because well there hasn’t been much to talk about, and honestly there still isn’t. So this is when I do a quick over view of the last couple of weeks followed by some interesting things I have learned…
Since Hamburg life has been extremely normal. I go to work in the bitter cold, deal with hyper kids who want Christmas to finally get here, and then wander the city for a bit before walking home in the slightly less bitter cold, and playing with the girls for the afternoon. My evenings tend to be rather lazy and cozy. Interrupting this delightful routine was a trip to the Christmas markets in Metz, an extremely long coffee at some friends of Christoph and Nanette’s, and a fabulous Chinese buffet, oh and a few trips to Saarbruecken to finish my Christmas shopping. The Christmas vacation started today, accompanied appropriately by a blizzard. The snow is piled up and my general dislike of being cold has kept me inside for the day, a pleasant option. I had planned on making at least one day trip or an overnight adventure before I left for the US on Wednesday, but like my cat I am thinking twice about every plan that brings me in contact with the outdoors, and(unlike my cat) doesn’t include snowman building followed by cocoa or Gluhwine. We do have a Christmas movie night tomorrow which I am excited for.
In less relevant news I would like to relate the contents of a conversation I had on the way to the Chinese Buffet. First of all, as we drove the radio informed us that they were getting ready to set off a bomb in Saarbruecken. My first thought was: shit! But it turns out that this was no crazed terrorist group or rebel teen, but a left over bomb from WWII which had just been dug up. They calmly evacuated the surrounding houses and deactivated it. To further complicate matter they had already scheduled a shipment of nuclear material to travel through Saarbruecken only hours after the bomb was discovered, but seeing as we are all still here, it seems that it must have went fine too.
The second topic of conversation had to do with kitchens, and if you should take your kitchen with you when you move. That’s right you can take the kitchen from house to house, or apartment to apartment. It seems that when renting a house, the kitchen is not automatically included, not the kitchen appliances, the entire kitchen, cupboards counters the whole nine yards. When renting a house you usually have to buy the kitchen separately (unless the house is rented fully furnished). And by default when you move out of your rental you may take the kitchen with you to your next apartment, and if you rent a place with a kitchen, but you like yours betters, the landlord has to remove the kitchen so that you can put yours in. I pointed out that that is like trying to sell the toilet and shower separately, but apparently that is an entirely different situation, and the bathroom is indeed part of the apartment. I personally find this arrangement entirely illogical, very amusing and oddly German. I can just imagine this concept transferred to the US. I imagine it would end in countless numbers of lawsuits, as former couples battle over the custody of the kitchen, maybe the kitchen would end up as consolation prize to the partner who had to move out? Or would it be a winner takes all situation?
Other than that, I have mainly been pondering the greatness of “National Geographic”. I was distressed to learn that the little gray bats and 23 other species of hibernating bats are dying because of a fungus that seems to irritate them and wake them from their sleep, a fatal interruption. It seems pretty dire, but so far no one knows what to do about it. “National Geographic” also had very cool article about Swans, and I have decided that “The Ugly Duckling” has misrepresented swans to children for generations, baby swans, or at least those in the magazine are incredibly cute. Also cute, but not featured in “National Geographic” are sloths. CNN had a video piece on a sloth sanctuary with over a hundred sloths in residence. It seems to me that sloths have mastered life, they like cats spend the vast majority of their time asleep, but unlike cats(at least wild ones) the rest of their time is spent mainly hanging out, literally. They don’t have to hunt, just eat the leaves next to them, and they only climb out of their tree once a week to relieve themselves. Baby sloth’s only requirement in life is to hang on to mama sloth, who is herself not doing much more than hanging onto a tree limb. Very cool animals.
Well I believe I shall return to my sloth-style life, sans tree of course. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and wonderful holiday season.