BootsnAll Travel Network

Vaihingen cannot be pronounced.

Eight years ago Jay participated in a foreign-exchange program with a school in Germany.  The student he was paired with was named Sabine and she is a fun, little German girl who is nice enough to let Jay stay with her whenever he visits.  More specifically, we stayed at her parents’ house as she has moved into her own apartment now.  They live in the town of Vaihingen in southern Germany near Stutgart.

We arrived pseudounannounced at her parents’ doorstep much to the suprise of Sabine’s mom.  Jay had called Sabine but she had not had the time to call her mother and let her know we were arriving.  So it was a pleasant surprise and she immediately greeted us and got us accommodated.  You may appreciate how polite that is if you read the previous post and recall that we had been traveling for two days straight and most likely smelled of sweat and misery. 

Sabine’s parents do not speak English.  They do not even speak the German that Jay learned in high school.  They speak Swabian, a dialect of southern Germany.  This made communication amusing and challenging at times.  Her mother made the effort to communicate as best as possible. 

The first night we showered, ate, and slept.  We were too exhausted to do much else.  Sabine came over and we got acquainted/reacquainted.  Mrs. Grau made us shnitzel.  All was good.

The next day we traveled a bit around Vaihingen to see the sights and run some errands.  I got my postcard mailed and we went to the candy store to buy gummies for people back home.  Mrs. Grau showed us around town and the surrounding area.  The German countryside is very nice and the architecture is interesting.  It’s hard to imagine that there are buildings in this area that are older than our entire country.  Some day I will ask my brother what life was like back then.

 We then met Sabine in downtown Stutgart for some shopping/sightseeing.  We browsed around and bought some things.  Jay had to buy Birkenstocks because a)he finds them comfortable, b)they are much cheaper here than in the U.S., and c)he hates me and wants me to suffer as much as possible.  We then returned home to enjoy a wonderful meal of spätsle (a traditional Swabian dish).  Very good.  We then had a few local beers and watched the end of the soccer game. 

Our final full day in Vaihingen was the most hectic.  We woke up in the morning early so that Sabine and Jay could visit the old school they attended while Jay was here eight years ago.  After a bit of socializing and making Caleb feel awkward for being the only one in the room who doesn’t speak German, we traveled around much of the Stutgart area looking for a golf course.  We knew one was there, it was the location that took effort to find.  I needed to buy a hat for my dad.  The second course we went to had one.

Then Sabine had to go to work so Jay and I went to the Porsche museum.  We were hoping to kill a lot of time but it is very small (one room, about ten cars) and we were done a lot sooner than expected.  We looked in the guide book and discovered that the art museum (Staats Gallerie) was free on Wednesdays.  Today was a Wednesday!  Woopie!  We went and viewed some wonderful paintings, mostly from German artists.  We then headed back to meet Sabine for more shoe shopping (another Woopie! except sarcasm) and a goodbye drink.  We said our long goodbyes at the train station.  We then returned to Vaihingen for a last meal from Mrs. Grau.

The night before she had said she was making bratwurst.  I was excited as this would remind me of home in Wisconsin.  She seemed happy that I was excited and asked what I eat with my bratwurst.  I said sauerkraut.  The Germans do not do this the way we do in Wisconsin.  When I said sauerkraut, they thought I meant as a side dish.  They do not put sauerkraut on the wurst like we do.  They seemed intrigued when I explained this to them, but her mother went and got a sauerkraut recipe book.  While paging through, I found a recipe for pasta rolled with sauerkraut and bacon.  Upon seeing my reaction, her mother decided to make this for us.  Mrs. Grau is now my second favorite mom in the world.  Again after dinner beers were enjoyed during the soccer game.  Bayern-Munchen won.  Boo.

The next morning we packed up and had a little time to go see the palace in Vaihingen before heading to the train station for the trip to Mainz to see Kyle.  We said our goodbyes to Mrs. Grau and waited an extra half hour for our delayed train.

I am at Kyle’s right now.  I will detail our adventures in Mainz when we are ready to leave to ensure it is all encompassing.


3 Responses to “Vaihingen cannot be pronounced.”

  1. Daye Says:

    Apparently, you are the phyisical embodiment of funk…literally.
    I luv it…

  2. Posted from United States United States
  3. Brandi Says:

    Wow, Jay in Birkies? Caleb, they are comfortable- you should try them on (you won’t turn into a hippie right away- look at Jay) If you are so inclined- send some gummies my way. (I am at work right now and they sound really good to me at the moment) Keep the blogs coming.

  4. Posted from United States United States
  5. Dave Says:

    Mrs. Grau?

    Frau Grau!

  6. Posted from United States United States
  7. tara Says:

    caleb, these are the coolest stories and pictures. when are you coming home so that i can hear all about it from you?


  8. Posted from United States United States
  9. Luke Says:

    It was cold, dark, and hookers died with out a fight. Very lame.

  10. Posted from United States United States

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