I have longed for thy salvation, O L-RD; and thy Torah is my delight. Let my soul live, and it shall praise thee; and let thy judgments help me. I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek thy servant; for I do not forget thy commandments. Psalm 119:174-176

06 May 2013

And now, for something completely different

"Haul" from Treffpunkt

So, I've been wanting to blog, but I'm processing some things and really just am not much in the mood to talk about anything other than light-hearted issues at the moment. . .  so to keep myself from going insane, or beating myself up for not blogging here - I've decided it's time for something completely different for today.

I've been wanting to go to a thrift store (Treffpunkt) that opened near us (if almost an hour away is equal to "near us") in Griesheim since it opened in the summer of 2011. For various reasons, we hadn't gone, but I kept the tiny article from our SüWo Zeitung in hopes that we would eventually make it out there. Every few months, I'd find the article again and move it somewhere else in the house after asking DH if he thought we could make it out there "today" or "this week".

I had my fill of kids being grumpy and nothing to do on Saturday, and since we needed to get out in the sun before the next storm came out, I figured "Fine, since I have to drive, I'm picking the place!!" and we set the directions on our Tom-Tom Navigational System and off we went.

The kids were asleep when we arrived, but I realized a little late, we did not have cash and might need it if we go in the shop.  So, I sent my husband in to ask if they take EC Cards (like Debit, except we don't do checking accounts here) and they did. He said it looked nice inside, and I couldn't help myself thinking "Gee, it looks bigger on the inside!" Kudos if you caught that reference.

I puttered around for about 30 minutes and found my "treasures" of the day. They ran at a little over 25 Euro, but I figure for a movie, three books, five audio books with songs, two serving plates for Thanksgiving (super hard to find!!) and a two quart Rubbermaid drink container - I had a "steal!"

I'd been looking everywhere for something I could use for Sukkot and Thanksgiving and I found two plates. I'd been hunting up something to send to a friend in the UK for Advent and found two quality CDs for her children. I also found that four of the items I have are filled with older Detlev Jöcker songs and aren't just stories for four and up!

If you don't know who Detlev is (and you probably don't if you haven't had a lot of exposure to German media for children), he writes these wonderful paedagogic  songs for children, and he had started collaborating with the German children's channel KiKa to produce a short series of videos called Tamusiland that consist of moving dances with easy to remember songs for kindergarteners.

Now, if you asked my husband what he thought of Detlev Jöcker, you'd probably get an eye roll, a head wagging and a long sigh that just says "ugh" and he won't say much more other than he doesn't particularly care for him (in not so many words) and that it's rather cliché.

If you ask others, especially mothers or teachers of small children - you'll hear something else entirely.  I'll let you make up your own mind. Below is a video from his Tamusiland series, "Freunde Spielen miteinander" (Friends play together)

Friends play with one another, friends hang out with another, friends listen to you, friends are people like me and you, friends share with another, friends stick together, friends give of themselves and my very best, my very best friend is you... (oder so ähnlich!)

*ahem* getting a bit dusty in here. Darn "F".... so big.. *ahem*

Anyhow, not all the songs are that cutesy, there are actually quite a lot that are religious, and I've been looking around and hunting them up rather slowly.

One thing I've been rather surprised at here in Germany is that audio tapes have not phased out, for adults or for children. A rather lot of audio books and songs for children are released on tape as well as CDs here, so I'm glad we were given a Radio/CD/Tape/LP player  by my husband's grandparents over the holiday. It gives us an opportunity to listen to them not only in the car, but also at home.

The kids had woken up by the time I was back in the car, and they were so very quiet listening to the tape "Wenn das Bärchen Bauchweh hat" (When the bear had a tummy ache) which has several stories that are read by Klausjürgen Wussow and then songs between the stories by Detlev Jöcker and sung by a children's choir.

So, all in all it really was a wonderful experience to go to this thrift store and not a disappointment like the three others I've been to since moving from Alabama. I guess I've been really spoiled by the variety of thrift markets in the United States, and this is the closest thing I've seen since being in Birmingham six years ago.

The really cool thing about Treffpunkt is that it is a consignment shop, and you can rent space to get rid of items that you no longer need, and the prices for renting these areas are on a sliding scale. You can set the time frame of rental (one week is the base price, but they recommend two weeks or longer) and all of your items will be processed and ticketed with a sticker that has your consignment number on it and the price. The owners take a 20% processing fee, which really isn't awful at all.

I know it sounds comical to suggest a thrift store on your visit to Germany, but you might find it interesting and you never know what kind of items ( new or old! ) that you will find while in there. There were quite a few vintage items that were tempting, but I'm on a budget and could not justify the expense of a knick-knack.  There are a great deal of books there as well, so you might want to think about it when you're in the Darmstadt area. :)

Hopefully next time I will think to take more photos, but we were in a rush to get out the door with the children so they'd sleep and the camera was the last thing on our minds. 

Have you ever found an unexpected treasure in your area? Would you like to share it with someone? Feel free to pop it into the comments below. Who knows, you might learn something new, or connect with someone traveling to or living in your area!

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