Previous 'Regulars' Post: http://wherearetherapaljes.blogspot.com/2010_01_01_archive.html
And now, a continuance, for the longer we live here, the more regulars I encounter. I will begin with my favorite regulars:
Justin, Nina, Nikole, und Oma: probably the cutest half-Romanian, half-German family on the block. 3 kids under the age of 5 that are taken care of by their Oma (Grandma). They walk by our house at least 2x/day. First, the dogs are greeted in Justin's sweet little German voice, "Hallo Bos, Hallo Riva!" Dann, ich, "Hallo Casey, meine Madchen-freund!" (he calls me his girlfriend). In his perfectly formed, slow German voice, he is one of the few people in Kasel I can understand 100% of the time - great practice for my German! He plays this game with the dogs (yes, every single time he walks by the house) - he is completely scared of them and when they're locked on the porch, he walks up full of confidence and talks to them. When they're not locked up, he walks up, slowly, one step at a time, and runs down as they near him. He'll do this over and over again until finally, Oma (his Grandma), calls him to keep walking. And then, on cue, Justin says, "Tschuss Casey, Tschuss Bos und Riva!"
Justin - sneaking up on the dogs
der Deutsche Post Man: "Azo, da sind meine madchen!" ("Oh, there are my girls!") 5 days a week, the Post Man pulls up in his bright yellow van wearing his bright yellow suit and the dogs start going crazy - they love him! He opens the porch gate and let's the dogs out to deliver the mail with him in our little courtyard, then locks them back up. Recently, he showed me pictures of his dogs - 3 Great Danes - only inside dogs - I can't imagine.
Christian: A man who lives down the street and tells me every single day that I am not American, I am from England. (He might be crazy?) Christian: "Woher kommen Sie?" Me: "Ich komme aus Amerika." Christian: "Nein, du kommst aus England. Du bist English." Me: "Nein, Ich bin Amerikanerin." Eventually, I get sick of telling him I'm American, not English, and I walk on.
Meine (only English speaking) Nachbore: A random couple that live on our street. They live on the corner and I pass them almost daily while walking the dogs. While we always exchanged greetings, we never had a conversation. At the Kasel Weinfest, we happened to sit by them (while drinking the local, amazingly delicious Riesling - which is like water around here). They strike up a conversation (auf Deutsche) and I respond, "Tut mir leid, aber ich spreche nur ein bisschen Deutsche" (I'm sorry, but I only speak a little German). Surprisingly, he responds in impeccable English! He and his wife (and probably all the other neighbors who have never spoken to us) thought we were the Ilbertz children (Axel and Michaela's), here to live by them! Funny. And in a way, yes, we are almost Ilbertz children :) I consider them family and they (at least Axel) treats us like family (constantly ordering us both around..).
Frau Scherf: Last post about the Kasel Regulars, Frau Scherf was in der krankenhaus (hospital), but now she's back.. and living on the porch (which faces our house) constantly beating her rugs out of the window and trying to teach me German (she speak not a word, not ONE WORD of English!). I amuse her by trying to tell her (auf Deutsche) what I'm going to do that day("Jetz, Ich laufe meine hunde"), and she replies by either giving me a blank face (um, I have no idea what the heck you are trying to say) or by saying "Prima!" (meaning, good job! I understood you!)
the back of the Scherf house, facing our porch
My Brat Man: While A doesn't like my possessiveness of 'my brat man,' I do, in a way, consider him MY brat man, mainly because I've done my best to make him popular and bring in the customers. The Brat Man is from Bulgaria. He has a little stand set up selling brats and beer. I don't know why, but I have a soft spot in my heart for this lonely man. He has no house and no family - lives in his broken down van, right beside his brat stand. I have to drive by him everyday on my way to the gym. Even though I'm a vegetarian, I am still drawn to the brat man to buy a brat that I either save for Alex or give to Axel. I take as many people as possible to see him and give him business, make light conversion (nur auf Deutsche), tip him, and say Bis Dann! He knows I'll be back shortly for more brats and more beer.
the Kasel Vet (tierarzt): who knows us (Bos, Riva, & ich) all too well. We have frequented him multiple times - for worms, shots, etc. Again, not a word of English. I am sure we alone reiterate the American stereotype that we Americans have crazy, undisciplined dogs and kids. Oh well.
Blumen Mann: a old man I pass almost daily walking the dogs. The first time I met him, he jibbers to me in German about how MY black dog got into HIS back yard and ate all of his flowers. Nein nein nein! I explain that my dogs are 1. always together 2. never leave my house 3. are always on a leash (kind of a lie) 4. there is another black dog that constantly runs away that lives on Neustrasse (the Ilbertz dog - Sky). 5. IT'S NOT MEIN! I SWEAR! He believes me, whew, and since that day, sits in his driveway, daily, waiting for me to pass by with the dogs so he can chat it up. Recently, he points at Boston and says, "Auf English, Black Man." I start DYING laughing. "Nein. Nicht ein black man, Black Dog! Man is Mann auf Deutsche." He starts dying laughing. He did TRY to learn some English!