It doesn't take very long for a traveller to form observations about the people and destination they're visiting. These are generalizations based on tiny sample sizes and are often incorrect, but always amusing.
It's the end of our 2nd day in Baden-Baden, Germany, and here are my observations so far. Let me know what you think!
People follow the rules. Everything from crossing streets to following signs and following policies. They are not unsympathetic of course (our hotel was kind enough to allow us to check in at 11am even though check-in time technically isn't until 4pm).
Germany is very progressive and people are not uptight. Saw a breastfeeding mother top down feeding her infant. Talk about empowerment! You go girl!
Now finally, water. Yes, I'm going to spend the remainder of this post talking about WATER! Tap water in Germany is perfectly safe to drink (in fact quite delicious), but Germans do not drink it. You also CANNOT ask for tap water in a restaurant. They will only serve you bottled water. Something about tap water being associated with plumbing water meant for washing.
People drink a lot of sparkling bottled water. It was actually difficult to find non-sparkling bottled water in the supermarket. It is also fairly expensive in a cafe or restaurant -- about €3, whereas beer was typically €4,20. I chose beer every time! :-D
My assumption is the price has to do with the Pfand, where you essentially pay €0,25 deposit for every bottle upfront and then get it back when you return the bottle to machines that are practically everywhere. Back home, you get $0.10 back for a beer can or bottle and most people can't be bothered, but €0,25 is just too much not to return. Plus it's fun! I bought a 6 pack of water the first day and proudly returned my bottles today like a local German. It was a great experience. There's always a first time for everything!
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