Maria’s Beer Balcony in Germany

My brother came by two days ago and we spent the evening on the balcony. We had light beer on the dark balcony, but there was also a little light from the living room and we also had some candles lit. My iPad camera wouldn’t recognize this, though.

We were sharing stories on the balcony till 0:30!


with Thomas from Schweinfurt/northern Bavaria

He is a regular visitor, because we are not only sister and brother, but good friends as well.

Fischbrötchen or Fish on a Breadroll German style

Fischbrötchen ( fish on a bread roll) is my all-time favorite snack. Over the years though, it has been harder to find one among the various markets and shops.

Our little fish-shop in Oberursel closed its doors a year back or so as it probably could not keep up with the supermarket competition. This was unfortunate for me, because of the few times a year I would go into Oberursel downtown, I hardly ever passed the shop without getting one.


In my mid-twenties, I would get a Fischbrötchen on late Saturday mornings, which served as antidote to the previous beer-filled night.

It is Sunday afternoon here and we are off to the Bommersheimer Weihnachtsmarkt (Bommersheim is part of Oberursel) and you guessed right; I am on the look-out for a another Fischbrötchen.

A Good Reason to Travel

Wer glücklich reisen will, reise mit leichtem Gepäck.

– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (1900-1944) –

Are there any Spaniards on Mallorca?

Mallorca, often jokingly referred to as Germany’s 17th state, seems to have a lack of Spaniards nowadays. In Cap Ratjada, where we spent two days as tourists, we heard English spoken once, Spanish twice, and the rest was all in German.

Before the trip, I had joked about this with my Welsh travel companion. I hinted at the fact she might learn more German on Mallorca than in our expat bubble community around the Frankfurt area.

I was right. All communication was conducted in German. Even at the supermarket, when the cashier asked whether we needed a borsa, and she noticed our confused look, she continued with, “Brauchen Sie eine Tüte?”

I also like getting haircuts while traveling. So I ventured into a hairdresser’s and asked in very simple German for a hair cut. Well, she was from Germany and probably initially wondered about my limited language skills.

Fortunately, I spotted two Spaniards and took their photo as proof. Yes, we were on a Spanish island!


Ordering German Beer

The other night out, I was reminded again of regional differences in the German beer language.

You might just order: Ein Bier, bitte. Around the Frankfurt area, they will ask whether you want a small one at 0.2 or 0.3 or a big one at 0.5. Just say, Ein grosses Bier, bitte. if you want to get a pint.

The following photo shows a normal sized beer. Normal to me, as I’m from the northern part of Bavaria.

In northern Bavaria, this glass 0.5 (one pint or 1/2 quart) is considered the normal size at the local guest house, and it could also be considered a small one at a beer fest.

Around the Frankfurt area (Hesse), this size is considered big as most people order a 0.2 or 0.3. During the summer time, out there in the beer garden, the pint becomes a bit more the norm.

I do dislike the 0.2 size. My nose is bigger than the glass and I have a hard time drinking from it. No, I do not generally order this, but I might get it, because I forgot to specify it. I have only been here for 17 years, so give me a break.

On the other hand, if you order a Schoppen (or Schöppchen, the diminutive form of Schoppen), you’d  get a beer in Hesse and wine in Bavaria.


What confusion. Many Bavarians would not order a 0,2 beer and certainly would not ask for a Schöppchen to get beer.

Enjoy your beer in Germany. It is one of the best things about our country.

Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

– Benjamin Franklin –


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