Monday, September 12, 2011

Getting around

We don't have a car here. The only other time in my life I have been without a car is for a couple of years in college. It's awesome.

Here's why:

  • There would be nowhere to park
  • Everywhere we have gone so far you can reach by foot or bike or public transit
  • We'd have to learn the German traffic rules
  • I'm not sure since gas prices are in liters, but I think it would be really expensive
So while I wonder who is driving Sam, my Nissan Altima, around these days, we really don't miss having a car. 

The public transit system here is great. It's designed for a huge annual convention that Hannover has, so it's way more robust than what they need for everyday city use. And that's great for us. We never have to look at a schedule to get around the central city, and even out in the suburbs you never wait too long for a tram or a bus.We haven't taken the train to anywhere far away yet, but that seems to be almost as easy.  

Here's our funny (wasn't at the time) transportation story from yesterday. We had gone out to our friend Andy's  house on Saturday for his son's 2nd birthday party.  They live out in the suburbs so we have to take the tram to the end of the line and catch a bus, which takes about an hour. It was late enough when we were ready to leave that we decided to sleep over and leave the next day.  
Andy dropped us off at the tram stop Sunday morning.  We saw an empty tram pull up, and the driver got off to smoke a cigarette. We decided that any sort of train or bus drivers must smoke, because what else would they do on their brakes? And how would they know when the brake is over unless there was no cigarette left to smoke?  Anyway, the empty tram was sitting there and no one else was around. 

I said to Brian, "Maybe we should push that green button next to the door. Maybe that will open it." 
Brian said, "She obviously sees us and knows we want to get on. I'm sure she will open the doors."
"Yeah, you're right," I said, "she knows we are here."

And two minutes later the tram left, with us still standing at the station.  When the next one pulled up we pushed the green button, and the doors opened, we got on. We had to wait 15 minutes before that tram left.


  1. I finally got a chance to check out your blog! It's made me literally LOL several times. Each time I see a black Altima it reminds me of you and makes me wonder if it used to be yours...

  2. I Lol'd for real too. win for Julia. Brian that tram driver thought you guys were stupid 'mericans... Should have listened to your wife dude!!


About Me

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Thanks for coming to my blog. It started as a way to keep in touch with family and friends, and now has become an ongoing project. I'm an American living in Germany and trying to travel whenever I can. I write about my experiences as an expatriate (the interesting ones and the embarrassing ones), and about my travels. There are some recurring characters in this blog, particularly my husband Brian and several of our friends. The title comes from the idea that living in a foreign country means making a lot of mistakes. So the things you used to do easily you now have to try over and over again. Hopefully, like me, you can laugh at how idiotic it feels. If you have happened upon my blog, then welcome. Knowing that people are reading what I write makes me keep going. Feel free to write comments or suggestions for future posts.