Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Frische Luft...Continued

I have class every day in a computer lab. The room is a little on the stuffy side, but I actually rather like it compared to the chillier classroom we have also used. The computer lab is staffed by a very entertaining and incredibly routine little man. Every time we have a break, he must open two of the windows as wide as possible while commenting about "getting some oxygen" in the room or complaining about the air. It's partially annoying because it gets very cold very fast, but amusing in its predictability and the little comments that always accompany the act. Today when break started he rushed toward the window, mumbling that he "would rather breathe cigarette smoke than the air in here!" Which is kind of silly, because he smokes. (Hmm, that's another point. How can a country so full of smokers be so obsessed with fresh air?) Really the air in the room is not so bad. It smells a little bit like too many people, but I guess I prefer it to being cold while indoors. I think Germans like being cold and pulling on a jacket.

Anyway, as he was doing his routine during one of the breaks I conveniently ran across this article which sounds quite German in its promotion of opening the windows. Maybe the little cigarette-smoking obsessed administrator is on to something. As for me I will continue going out to the lobby to hang around the radiator during break - or go outside to enjoy the fresh air where it belongs :)

And unrelatedly, a huge THANK YOU to Dru, who sent me a box of Trix cereal!!! It's round too! They taste better round. THANK YOU!! It not only arrived safely and quickly, but instead of having to pick it up at the ridiculously inconvenient central Heidelberg Deutsche Post like usual, it was sent to a Packstation in Neuenheim. (Also not so convenient, but better.) The card that came in our mailbox had a barcode on it. Damon (not me d/t the Mainz issue) took it to the Packstation, which is just a big bank of locked metal boxes containing packages. He scanned the barcode on the card, and the box popped open with the Trix package inside. Cool!! I hope they do this with everything from now on (though I would prefer a closer Packstation, of steps, though!).

Alright, it's already past my bedtime. Gute Nacht!


  1. kid tested, mother approved? no, that's kix...

  2. Did you guys ever get our package? I hope so, we sent it forever ago!

  3. Sara: mmmm...Kix. Don't get me started on another craving! ;)

    Michelle: No sign of it! Did you guys get tracking on it?

  4. I told the German scientist who told me all about Aufnemers that you didn't like them. He couldn't believe it! He also said that when he first came to the U.S., he watched Sesame Street.

  5. You can have the "oxygen" debate with a german until you are blue in the face ... you could even show them a spectrometer reading of the air in the room and the fact that the oxygen levels are comparable to those outside would not faze them ... they really believe it. But consider the fact that many germsns close their rolladen in the evenings, giving the old homestead a bunker-like feeling, and you begin to appreciate that yearning to breathe free.

  6. you're so lucky to live in HD! I miss so much the city...

  7. Mary: Aw, I hope he didn't take offense. Mopping is one of my least favorite chores so I'm probably a little unnaturally picky about it!

    Mike: Man, the Rolladen are a whole nother (mm, bad English) subject altogether. The first thing my American brain thought was: Damn, check out that gigantic fire hazard. What if you need to get out quickly at night? Oh well, they do keep it nice and toasty in here. So far they've kept us from having to purchase curtains, too.

    Siri: So far as I know, Heidelberg hasn't closed its doors :)

  8. It`s VOC ("volatile organic compounds") which causes problems.

    So, please, let more fresh air come in! :-)

    -> (German)

    -> Indoor Air Quality and Student Performance Fact Sheet

  9. Indoor Air Quality and Student Performance Fact Sheet


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