Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Temper tantrums & First Food Impressions

During the last several days it’s been cold. Luckily it hasn’t rained. Although I suspect that if it rained at night it would snow. Of course I could be totally wrong but, that’s how cold it is to me. The high today I read was 46F.

At any rate, it’s given me an opportunity to type something up about the food I’ve been eating. There are a couple of links to things here so, enjoy.

Thankfully during my town explorations here I’ve been able to find the local grocery store. The shopping carts are a little different here on and of base/post. To get a cart one must deposit 1 euro or, on base a quarter to free up a cart. Placing a coin in the designated spot (usually the handle) of the cart will unlock the “key”. To get the coin back, one must return the cart, insert the “key” and that will release the coin. It’s a shame that they have to resort to this to get people to return their carts but, I’d say in more urban areas of the US it might be helpful. (Considering our neighborhood always had a rogue cart hanging out.) The great thing about the German grocery store that I went to is that they have the little car carts (the cart with the car in front). I can’t go to the store with Samuel and not expect to use that cart. Edeka is located about a 5 minute walk away from our hotel.

There I can find just about anything that I might need. Some things are more expensive but other things are about right on par when it comes to what I was paying in California. There are a few differences though. There’s a small area in front with a machine that I think is for recycling glass bottles. I’m not sure yet. There are definitely more pickles (and pickled things), yogurt, sausages & cured meat, and chocolate. I need to emphasize the amount of chocolate. There are aisles and aisles of chocolate. I have been buying Ritter chocolate bars and have not come home with the same flavor yet. One even had cornflakes in it. They do have kinder eggs here, which are chocolate hollow eggs. Inside is a small toy/puzzle for kids.

If I’m going to buy produce, like a bell pepper, I need to go over to the scale, type in the veggie code (which is the number that is next to the price), and place the pepper on the scale. A bar code label will then print out of the scale. I then need to stick the label on to the pepper. This lets the cashier know the price/what to ring it up as.

Eiscafe or, the Ice Cream parlor needs a section all it’s own. From what I understand, Eiscafe’s are popular. They also serve coffee, tea, and crepes. Sometimes they serve sandwiches as well. The Ice cream that is served is really really yummy. Not as smooth as a gelato but the flavors are very similar. They even serve something called spaghetti eis which I believe is ice cream that’s been pressed through a sieve and made to look like spaghetti. There is even one served that truly does look like a plate of spaghetti. For the kids they have several ice cream treats that are made to look like things. Joshua got a bumble bee the other night two scoops of ice cream, M & M treats for the eyes and wafer cookies for the wings. The stripes were drizzles of chocolate syrup. Just a scoop of ice cream on a cone is about 79 euro (about $1). Not too bad?

The pizza is good although when we’ve gotten take out, they don’t slice the pizza for us… so we’ve been left sawing at it when we get home. Most places that serve pizza also serve middle eastern type food. I say this loosely because if it is categorized as this, I’m not sure what area of the middle east it’s from. It’s really popular with the 3AM crowd. The hottest item seems to be Duner (I believe it’s pronounced Doo-ner). It consists of Pita bread, thinly sliced meat, veggies and a creamy dressing. Most times also with a slice of white mild cheese. The pita bread is almost like a thin foccacia, the veggies are red cabbage, tomato, carrots, and lettuce, the white cheese looks similar to a slice of feta but is very mild, and the meat... is anyone's guess! Actually it’s probably chicken or turkey (I’m assuming most of these establishments don’t serve pork). In Israel, I had Shwarma which was similar to this. I’m sure that different countries have different variations. It’s really out of this world good. Joshua had one all to himself and pretty much finished it. Mike and I shared one. It was so good we had it two nights in a row. This definition I found might be worthless as like everything it's on Wiki! Turns out it's Turkish.

One might ask if I’ve had any German food yet? Well, I’ve had danishes… does that count? Actually the closest thing that I’ve had that’s German is probably the Frankfurts that I cooked last night with onion and potatoes. According to the package they were “The Original Franfurt!”

To explain we haven’t gone out for Beer and Brauts, I might have to admit to some blame. Sam is very very difficult to take out to eat. Most Germans are understanding of little ones, but really, I’m unsure how understanding they can be. Samuel is the type of kid someone might drop off with their 16 year old sister so she could have a little lesson on birth control. He is the temper tantrum king. I was in a store the other day looking for a hat to get for him. There were balloons throughout the store and he wanted one. I wasn’t sure if they were for the kids, so I didn’t give him one. He started screaming so high and loud, he probably beached some whales down in the Mediterranean with his sonar capabilities. Old German women were coming up to him to try and calm him down and he started screaming “NO! NO! NO!” at them and stomping his feet. They quickly ran off. I paid as quickly as I could and scooped him up only to find out in the end that the balloons were for the kids. I was so embarrassed. It’s one thing for my kids to throw a temper tantrum in American surroundings. I kind of know what to expect in that environment. If some preachy know it all wants to tell me how annoying my child is I can quickly tell them where to stick it… however, when it’s now a foreign country, it adds a whole new level of shame and embarrassment. Like it or not, I’m a representative of America. If my child acts that way it’s not only a reflection of me and my child but also a reflection of all of American mothers and their children. This could just mean I’m a nervous nelly and have no real confidence in my mothering capabilities... GUILTY! Aren’t we all? I mean, I don’t think that I’ve met a mother, or parent for that matter, who has smugly stated they are completely confident in how they are raising their children (unless of course they are a first time parent to a really good kid… I think I fell under this one with Joshua, but I didn’t know it at the time) or a pregnant woman who hasn’t had her child and doesn’t know any better. I really am so nervous about taking out my little volcano of a toddler that I avoid certain places… like restaurants... for everyone’s sake. I don’t want to have to hover over my kid wondering when he’s going to erupt. I can’t enjoy my meal that way. More importantly, I’m sure that the young twenty year olds with no kids out on a date want to hear my precious screaming mimi. Honestly, I’ll just save everyone the trouble. My only saving grace during this shopping trip was that I couldn’t understand what they were saying in German about me or my kid. Beer and brauts have been around forever… they’ll still be here when my kid becomes more palatable.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry--were you speaking of my Angel Grandchild? He couldn't possibly be screaming!!!LOL Like everyone else, he'll have to get used to his new surroundings. Hopefully, he'll settle in soon!Love ya!