The Mountain Lodge at Camp King, Oberursel, in June 2020

Over the years, we have taken many walks around our neighborhood, Camp King. There is relatively little traffic, and a nice park to walk through.

Steps leading towards the Mountain Lodge, Camp King Oberursel
Mountain Lodge at Camp King Oberursel

The left side is the meadow, which slopes down from the Mountain Lodge. The right side shows part of the public park.

We consider ourselves fortunate to be living here in this part of Oberursel.

Streets of London in April 2020

Our son, Thomas, currently residing in London during lockdown, has shared the following photos, which he took on Easter Sunday while out for a morning run through his neighborhood.

The Stanley Arms is a traditional Victorian pub located near the Jamaica Gate of Southwark Park. It was almost demolished and turned into a residential housing block before Southwark Council refused the planning permission in 2015.

The Stanley Arms in London

The Spa Terminus on Dockley Road is a collection of businesses under railway arches that are involved in wholesale food production and distribution. Under normal circumstances, some of them would also be open for retail customers.

Spa Terminus on Dockley Road, London, April 2020

The St James of Bermondsey is a pub on St James’s Road not too far from Bermondsey tube station. The pub has a beer garden and also serves coffee, tea, wine, gin, and pies.

St. James in London

No matter where you turn, you see more parked cars than people on the road. ‘Stay Home’ is the best anyone can do right now.

London April 2020

Oberursel Photo Calendar 2020

As I am about to prepare a care package with local souvenirs for our daughter in Tallahassee, FL, I ran across this picturesque photo calendar.

With Oberursel being an expat town of its own kind, there are plenty of residents who come and go, including my own family. This makes it a great souvenir for anybody who has ever lived here.

I bought this calendar for € 12,95 at the newsagent Tabak Carree Rhode at Camp King, Oberursel.

Photos and Design by Petrus Bodenstaff, a taxi driver from Frankfurt.

Christmas Cards from Germany

Sending Christmas cards is not a common German tradition. As a matter of fact, the only cards I get from Germans are sent by the ones who had lived overseas and are familiar with this tradition. In most German homes, they are neither hung up on the door, nor strung over the fireplace, with the latter being a rare commodity in this country anyway.

When I was a child, the only cards we ever sent were to aunts, uncles, and cousins who lived out of town. Calling each one would have been too expensive then, so a Christmas postcard was sent.

The tradition of sending Christmas greetings originated in Great Britain in the early 19th century. It was common practice to write seasonal messages on calling cards and then deliver them on the next call. Then there came the postal system and that was the beginning of sending one’s festive greetings by regular mail.

Over the years, the then rather plain German Christmas postcard has evolved into some finer Christmas cards sent in envelopes. Some of the most beautiful ones are done by the artist Allmuth Gutberlet, who paints seasonal images of the towns such as Kronberg, Bad Homburg und Oberursel.

We do appreciate her cards as they depict wintery scenes of places we know so well. This one shows St. Ursula Church.

A. Gutberlet

 Seen from the corner of the Oberursel Market Square (Marktplatz)

A. Gutberlet

Oberursel’s Historic Town Hall (Historisches Rathaus) dating from 1479

A.Gutberlet

Again, this is the Oberursel Market Square with its fountain and the street leading up to the Historic Town Hall.

A.Gutberlet

These cards can be purchased at various Christmas Markets around the region. Some of the local stationary shops sell them as well.

Is sending Christmas cards by mail bad on the environment? Should we only send digital seasonal greetings?

I do care about my personal carbon foot print in most respects, but when it comes to cards, I will stick to the non-green tradition. Call me a romantic, if you like.

Market Day in Oberursel, Germany

If you happen to be an expat moving to Oberursel, be prepared for a mostly quiet, beautiful, and regulated surrounding. Germans love their beer and wine fests, they do not shop on Sundays, and there are rules when you can party/make noise and not. You’ll get used to it, I’m sure.

Saturday is a busy day for most shoppers, since everything is closed on Sundays. I managed to get away from work for 40 minutes and took a short trip downtown to the market for a Fischbrötchen (marinated fish on a bread roll).

Oberursel’s market is located right at the market square and it’s a very pretty sight.

Saturday market day in Oberursel

Saturday market day in Oberursel

When I went to order my Fischbrötchen, the lady told me she was out of bread rolls and asked me to get one from one of the other vendors. Once I come back with a bread roll, she could make it for me, she said. This is Germany at its best 🙂

Another view of the market with the ever-so-clean fountain.

Oberursel market and fountain

Next, we went down into the Altstadt, where they got ready to set up for the Seifenkistenrennen (soap box race).

Soap box race, Oberursel

Soap box race, Oberursel

“Yes, it’s spelled correctly”, one of the guys seems to say.

Does this look right to you?

Does this look right to you?

Being a repat, but working expat hours, it is sometimes difficult to match my schedule to the German hours of operation.

But this should be the least of your concerns when living in Germany. It is safe, they have good beer, and are generally honest in business dealings.

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