Oh, my! So many things are happening! Everybody got ID cards to allow us to get onto the US bases here, we went to the commissary for the first time, we shopped at the PX, saw the schools, etc. We are in the “Army Lodge” on one of the bases. It is essentially a hotel for incoming and outgoing government personnel. As our sponsor told us beforehand, the Lodge worked out great for us because of its proximity to the schools. Several other families with kids in schools that were arriving over the summer were also staying in the Lodge. This will give the kids opportunities to meet new friends before school even starts. Joel has the extra bonus of meeting his Principal and she is wonderful! She is a new hire and so is living in the Lodge with us.
Our sponsor wanted to share the sights with us near where we will be living so he took us on a small car trip during our first weekend. We saw our first castles, amazing vineyards that climbed steep foothills and took a ferry across the Rhine (“Rhein”, in German).
Here’s the excited Behnkes crossing the Rhine!
Wiesbaden was hosting an Ironman Half on Sunday, along with a Winefest, so we enjoyed both with our Sponsor, Randy, and his family. The Ironman run occurred in Kurpark which is just a few blocks from Randy’s house so we walked there and downtown. We are quickly learning that we would like to find a home from which we can easily walk downtown. It is wonderful! Lots of open spaces for festivals, a Farmer’s Market, and general shopping.
This is Randy and his family eating at the Wine-fest with us. They took us to different booths and we bought our first brats (here!), beer, a taste of wine and some water. Randy’s family already taught us that we have to specify we want “still” water if we don’t want carbonated water and no restaurants offer glasses of water for free. It is ordered just like a coke and often costs more than a glass of wine. I was so proud of Joel! This very first week he used Euro he had in his pocket (I think Randy gave him some), approached a German at a booth at the festival and ordered a drink. Way to go, Joel!
Before arriving, we were told by many that we had to be sure to get some “Spaghetti Ice”. It is ice cream pushed through something that makes it look like spaghetti noodles, then strawberry sauce on top for the spaghetti sauce and shaved something on top for the parmesan. Since we are eating out every day and Randy and family were kind enough to take us out several times, we visited a German ice cream shop within the first few days of arrival. There are lots of them around!