Saturday, April 17, 2010

IMMIGRANT DAUGHTER 33



Our son-in-law was stationed in Garmisch-Parkenkirchen, Germany in the Bavarian Alps that was beautiful here is a picture of it. Our stay in Germany was both good and not so good. We enjoyed being there for the birth of our grandson and seeing places of beauty we would not have ever been exposed to. This is a picture of Garmisch taken from our path to town we walked quite a bit and you can see the Zugspitz Mountain when it was clear, it’s a breath-taking site. He had several tours there and we were blessed to visit them on their first tour. Both of their children were born in Garmisch-Parkenkirchen.

The people love flowers and dressed up their houses like this one, up down the streets we never sa like this in our journey in Germany but Bavaria. Their houses were built on like postage stamps lots
compared to ours in the states and they used up every inch with a vegetable garden in the back and flowers in
the front. They enjoyed the color when they could because winter is long and cold with lots of snow. Not much color but white and dirty white from the traffic of street cleaning equipment.

We loved riding the trains in Germany and one day when we where going to a Volks March (like our 5-K walk) in a nearby town we rode the train there and the train stopped before our destination and the conductor came through and shouted off off. Before we new it we were stranded in a town we never heard of and C spoke very little German, just enough to get by and the people around us spoke no English. There were people in the train station that we asked for directions to no avail and then I yelled, “does anyone speak English and one man said he did. We explained our situation about the train dumping us because it didn’t go any further and we were trying to get to the Volks March in the area. Lots of Germans walk in these and he knew where we were going and helped us get the right train.
The people had cows and sheep that man would walk them out of town leading them up to the mountain to graze in the morning and then at the end of the day he would bring them back down and the lead animal always had a bell that all the cows and sheep would follow the leader. At that time traffic took a halt and as they approached the different houses the animals would peel off and go to where they belonged. It was fascinating to see.

We did a lot of train traveling to take part in the marches. C had a German hat that he would put the pins on that you were given when you completed the march. It usually took 2 or 3 hours for each march over hill and dale in the beautiful countryside. I still have his hat and will try to find a picture of him in it and us wearing our knee socks and knickers.

One of the customs we did enjoy was their 4 pm tea and pastries time in the bakari (bakery) shops. Some times at the marches at a halfway point they would have a place to stop so one can use the water closet (toilet) and buy a beer if you wanted one. You needed a Pfennig’s to use the water closet. The coin was little smaller than a penny in looks and we always made sure to have one for such stops when we were out.

They do not scrimp when serving beer. The first time C ordered a beer they brought a glass that I’m sure was a liter. With both of us sipping it we never could finish one. The one thing I thoroughly enjoyed was their large soft pretzel they would serve warm. I still like pretzels better than chips.
The Germans eat a lot of bratwurst and cabbage and their potato soup is delicious. They also use a lot of apples, veal and pork and I must say there wasn’t anything we didn’t like of all the food we tasted.

We also liked how the Germans treated their dogs that were welcomed in the restaurants with their masters. All the animals were well behaved and usually were large and alert. In one place we ate lunch the table next to us had a large black dog sitting under the table at his masters feet. We didn’t even know he was there until his master gave him some food off his plate. This dog ignored us and we were so close to his tail that was in the aisle next to us we could have stepped on it. When we were through eating we asked to pet the dog and the man gave a command to his dog and the animal moved closer to us and allowed us to touch him. We were certainly were impressed because the dog just scooted over without standing up. Also you never saw dog messes in the streets and walks. People picked up after their dogs.

Now the part of the visit that was not so good; one morning my daughter and I heard a loud thump from upstairs. We were in the kitchen just talking having our tea. I ran upstairs to see C flaked out on the floor sort of coming to his senses. He said he passed out and hit his head on the dresser. I helped him get dressed and took him to the military infirmary and he determined C had a mild heart attack. He suggested we go to the German hospital for a particular series of tests the military didn’t have the equipment to do. While in the German hospital C made himself known with the other retired military that were patients at the same time. C was about to be let out of the hospital when the doctor and an orderly came in on routine rounds. The
orderly had a beverage in his hand, and when the doctor asked C if there was anything he wanted and he said yah and pointing to the beverage. The doctor put in his request and before he left he had a beer he was enjoying a nice cold beer.

Well after a few months C felt fine and decided to come back to the states and check himself in at Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland. I stayed with my, the parents of 2nd daughter’ husband who lived in he area. They were very nice to me taking me back and forth to the hospital while C was a patient.

They couldn’t find anything that indicated he had a heart attack. When a doctor indicated they wanted to do invasive surgery C called a halt to that and said no. The head of that department came into his room to talked to him and said he didn’t blame him for saying no because if it were him he also would say no. He was cutting his career short because being a doctor in the military wasn’t what he wanted to do anymore.

We found out then they just wanted to make up their surgery quota. We enjoyed our stay in Germany and would do it again if the kids needed us. This is a good place to say to be continued, and until then I am Immigrant Daughter.

4 comments:

  1. Love your blog! Keep those stories coming.

    Milt x

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  2. What a "storybook" place to have lived! As we said last night, you have led an interesting and diverse life!! Love, C

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  3. Thank you for sharing this delightful little tour. My son was stationed at one time in Frankfurt and loved the country hoping to return someday as a civilian. Have a joyful day, Mollye

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