German Greeting for New Year’s Eve

We say ‘Einen guten Rutsch ins Neue Jahr’ (A good slide into the New Year) a few days before and up until New Year’s Eve.

When the clock strikes midnight on 31 Dec, we say ‘Prost Neujahr!’ to friends and strangers outside while watching the ensuing fireworks and sharing drinks.

The word ‘prost’ derives from the Latin word ‘prosit’, and means ‘To your health’, or ‘May it be good for you’. A long time ago, this was used mostly by university students as a drinking toast. Nowadays, most Germans use it.

The day after New Year’s Day, I usually greet people with ‘Ein gutes neues Jahr!’ I might throw in a late ‘Prost Neujahr’ if I know them well.

Right now at about 8pm on New Year’s Eve, I wish you all a Guten Rutsch ins Neue Jahr!

German Lesson: Happy New Year!

Was Deutsche VOR Neujahr sagen [What Germans say before New Year’s Day]:

– Einen guten Beschluss! (Happy ‘Closure’)
– Einen guten Rutsch! (Happy ‘Sliding’)

Right after midnight, we say ‘Prost Neujahr!’ (Cheers to the New Year!)

The following days, we wish ‘Alles Gute im neuen Jahr!’ (Happy New Year!)

Why do we have different greetings? For the same reason we do not wish a ‘Happy Birthday’ BEFORE the actual date (what if…). We also don’t give baby showers (what if…), nor wedding showers (what if…).

Wir Deutsche sind ein abergläubisches Volk.
We Germans are a superstitious folk.

Vokabular:
abergläubisch (Adj): superstitious
der Aberglaube: superstition
das Volk: folk

Silvester Feuerwerk

Safe Drinking Water in Oberursel

Stadtwerke Oberursel supply high quality drinking water from the tap

Over the years, many expats have come to live in Oberursel. Some come from countries where only bottles water is considered safe drinking water and are really surprised to learn that in Oberursel, we can drink the water straight from the tap.

Forty-five years ago, on exactly the 1st of January 1968, the Stadtwerke Oberursel Taunus GmbH (Municipal Utilities, est. 1967) took over the water supply in Oberursel. Since then, the Stadtwerke Oberursel represents a safe and reliable provision of the number one resource – drinking water of high quality.

About 80% of Oberursel’s drinking water comes from the Haidtränktal, and its level is rated “soft” in accordance with the current Detergent and Cleansing Agents Acts. 15% of  Oberursel’s drinking water originates from the waterworks Riedwiese, and around 5% of Oberursel’s drinking water needs are covered by the Water Procurement Association of the Taunus area. The latter two water supplies are rated “hard”. As drinking water is the most important and best-controlled resource, it regularly undergoes quality control and is analyzed in accredited laboratories. Each year, 200 water samples are taken from the Oberursel water production plants, containers, and pipe network.

To ensure a safe and reliable drinking water supply, Oberursel provides a 295-kilometer long pipeline network. The Stadtwerke staff monitors, renews, extends and maintains these pipes. This way, optimal safety is ensured. In 2012, 38 new water connections were created, and a total of 86 water connections were renewed. A total of 501 meters of water supply lines were re-laid or renewed.

Wasserwerke Oberursel

Wasserwerke Oberursel

Drinking water from the tap in Germany is better than store-bought mineral water. The Stiftung Warentest, an agency which measures and evaluates safety and quality of consumer products and service, regularly arrives at this conclusion. Bottled still water often has fewer minerals, but more germs than tap water. Additionally, drinking water is very affordable: For €1.20, you can draw one liter of fresh tap drinking water each day for an entire year. For the same money, you can only buy six bottles of mineral water from a discount store (source: O-TON magazine Stadtwerke Oberursel, issue 1/2013).

Advantages:

* Much lower cost

* Better Safety and Health

* Home delivery into your kitchen

* No storage space needed

* No bottles to return

 

Vocabulary:

das Leitungswasser (tap water)

das Mineralwasser (mineral water)

stilles Wasser (still mineral water) + spritziges Wasser (sparkling water)

Ordering water at the restaurant:

A: “Ich hätte gerne eine Flasche Wasser.” (I’d like to have a bottle of water)

B: “Stilles oder spritziges?” (Still water or sparkling water?)

A: “Stilles, bitte.” (…)