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Everything posted by kiplette

  1. Maybe your 9 yr old certificate pre-dates the ALTE system, so although it is TELC, it is not within the framework now in place. Which is basically splitting hairs, given that you have lived here ages and hold down a job which requires communication with the natives....   Having said that, my impression from reading endless threads is that the individual you see has you over a barrel.
  2. Health Insurance Contract Cancellation

    My son is leaving Germany in September to study in the UK. He will be with the NHS. He is currently working and insured through the TKK. Presumably he is best just cancelling his TKK policy - he has no idea whether he will return to Germany or not after his 4 years of study. I have read of people remaining in just in case they want to return, and paying a lower amount for the time they are away, but that seems overkill for his situation.   Thoughts?
  3. What are you cooking today?

    slammer, your fridge sounds a lot like ours...   cleaned mine yesterday, and it thankfully no longer smells like pond slime with a lacing of carrion - the last thing needing scoffed before it wanders off of its own accord is a pork fillet, which I think I might slice, squish and make into a version of that veal thing with stuff pinned on with cocktail sticks.    That is going to be fun to google for a recipe... 
  4. unemployment benefit

    North sea coast somewhere, from an earlier thread.    'Tis a crappy situation, to be sure.   Has either of you spent even a day in the Forces? Or one of your parents? If so, SSAFA forces help or the Legion may be able to help, both short term and long term. This is not begging - it is about getting back on your feet in order to continue being the productive members of society you have been for over 40 years.   TT member Dusty can get you in touch with both, I think.
  5. Barbecue at work -- Foods to bring

    There is a kind of foil with baking paper stuck on one side which presumably solves the health issues of grilling in foil.   I used it inside a cake tin to save greasing which was not greatly successful since the two sides react differently to heat and the thing squiggled around in the pan and the cake was seriously wonky.
  6. Farmhouse renovations..

      Presumably this would have been the material used back when it was built. I would be very tempted by it. What have you used for the 'grundierung'? Is that breathable?    There is a new magazine from the hugely successful 'Landlust' stable, which concentrates on traditional methods. I find it interesting, but I am pretty clueless. You may not find anything new or special in them at all.    My in-laws lived in a Devon cottage with the oldest part being a study made of a several-hundred year old essentially straw and dung animal house. It makes me laugh when the nay-sayers come on being rude about those building materials. Properly done, they are long lasting and much less damaging to the world around us.
  7. What was your first car?

    My brother first had a Fiat 500, like the tiny child of a Beetle. We overtook one the other day and it brought back some memories...
  8. What made you smile today?

    Oh, she is the cutest. What a smile...
  9. What's got you flummoxed today?

      Zwiebelfisch is not wrong, it's just that it is usually character assassination, rather than body-part shaming/bragging.    edit : wot Leon said. We agreed early on in our relationship that our shared sex life was not a topic for conversation with others. 
  10. What's got you flummoxed today?

  11. What's got you flummoxed today?

      Nope.   Definitely not all.   Not an interesting topic of conversation.
  12. Brexit / Applying for German citizenship

    Brilliant john_b, welcome to the club.  
  13. Hello to all the online lurkers!

    Oh, don't knock the house, barn, mud posts. Those are great.   Not so much the rest, but SP has been known to bring many a crisis to a happy conclusion for his fellow TTers, so I guess some don't reflect themselves so well in print.
  14. Waldkita Experience?

    Again, no direct experience, but the headmaster of the British school we had here sent his son to one, and he and his wife were thrilled. There was a strong community and opportunities for involvement should one wish.
  15. Germany secondary school final exam (math)

    We have 3 here, one is 'sport' and one is 'music' but that's it, really, which I don't think really addresses the issue of providing for strengths and weaknesses in different subjects.   It is good that schools with different profiles exist in some places, but I don't think that is the essential issue - there is a lack of willingness in general to grapple with individual needs. Overall I find the schooling available here offers good opportunities, but this is one area which I think is weak. There are obviously always exceptions, and we have had some truly world class teachers. They comment that there is an emphasis during training on subject matter and theory rather than the requirements of learners, which is no real surprise.  
  16. Germany secondary school final exam (math)

      This I struggle with in Germany. The different levels of schooling only really differentiate between kids who are academically inclined, those who are more of a do-type than a book-learn type, and those who find learning hard for whatever reason, and need less in their curriculum if they are to be successful.   The system does not distinguish between arty types and stem types, and of course you can be absolutely brilliant at writing whilst being utterly crap at maths. And possibly even more so in the other direction.    Streaming allows for this, and that's not rocket science. It can make for complicated timetabling, if you literally separate the abilities,  but it is not impossible. Gymnasium teachers earn well here. My former colleagues who have successfully segued into the German system literally cannot believe how easy teaching is here and how little is required, and the lack of a concept of differentiation in the classroom would  be one of the 'unbelievables' - we are used to providing for at least 3 levels of attainment in any one class. That's the whole point. Otherwise you are a lecturer and not a teacher.  
  17. Best options for new central heating system

    We heat primarily with wood, wasserführender ofen, also with an oven section. It is pretty good, heats the radiators well, cooks our food, but the big downer is, as you say, not being there to shove the logs in.   I would probably go pellet, but would worry that if the price rises, then you are stuck. At least we could start burning sperrmull, cats, kids, whatever is lying about with less than 20% water in it...   edit - we do have perfectly good gas heating, I am just tight.
  18. Neighbour boundary issues

      a lot of rainwater is commonly known as a flood. This could be a really massive issue.
  19. Brexit / Applying for German citizenship

    I ticked 'nein' and wrote 'EU' in the box. Not wanting to run my pen out 
  20. Which past members do you miss the most?

    So he did go for the steel pipes in the chimney plan. Panda will be happy.    Next time you visit will you take a picture of the sauna and hot tub? I bought a second hand blow-up one on kleinanzeigen last year, and we love it and Paps really wants to keep it. It is in the Diensthaus at the moment though, which has greatly reduced power bills, and I can't see us continuing to use it in our own house. A wood fired one, though, that I can see as sustainable.   I am glad you are in touch. 
  21. Which past members do you miss the most?

    Oh good. How is their house project? That was brilliant to watch in progress. Bit like Piggy's barn - amazing transformation.
  22. why are school trips so expensive in germany?

    Our schools do their own. Sometimes the teachers share info from year to year, but not always. A last class trip for fun is organised by the students, if there is one.   The costs are kept down that way, I suppose.   At kid#1's posh Gymnasium (if only we had known, there were two others to choose from...) there was a requirement to spend 2000 € on a 2/3 week trip to America if you wanted to have English as your thesis subject (not thesis, there was another word, forgotten it) which I refused. All 6 of us could have had the holiday of a lifetime for that. I think that kind of thing is entirely unreasonable in a state school - I could have claimed poverty and asked for help, but that was not really the point. I just found it an inappropriate use of resources and not an OK thing to make pflicht. Not cricket. No need for that kind of profligacy, appalling for the environment, blah, blah.
  23. What do we need Car Friday for anyways?

    Maundy Thursday/Gründonnerstag is remembering the Last Supper, or Passover, where lamb and unleavened bread was eaten.   The names are either giving to the poor (maundy purses) related or foot washing related (mandate- latin-commandment) or Grün - food related as Tap mentions- there having been specific fasting requirements for Holy week, or to do with the 'Greinen' of the excommunicated who were allowed back into Church on that evening.   This is according to my assorted oldies - the origins of these words in both languages remains a source of endless fascination year on year. Looking at Wikipedia, there are several more explanations to peruse. Interesting.   My personal favourite for Karfreitag from the options above is Kehrfreitag. Silently, of course .
  24. German English Exchange

      All is well, then.   I thought I explained myself perfectly well - no judgement whatsoever of you, but that the advert was not conducive to many replies, either in its placing, or in its format.    I am an English teacher. Perhaps this is then a sensitive area for me, and if I came over as overly savage, for that I do apologise.  
  25. S1 Health Insurance and Brexit Questions

    I think it does, remembering a friend who used to use one. Not sure, though.