It’s 5:43 am — let the jackhammering begin

Seasons are a funny thing. Probably in much of the urbanized western world, Spring and Summer mean the orange barrels of construction. That’s the case here too — all kinds of intersections are getting congested around town due to the zillion construction projects that have popped up. I think most people have come to expect it, and that includes the growing number of commuters on their bikes as well.

But what I don’t get is why it has to start before dawn. There are noise regulations all around here. For instance, it is printed in unmistakable letters on a placard on the giant glass recycling collection containers that they are not to be used before 8:00 am or after 8:00 pm on weekdays and Saturdays, and not at all on Sundays and holidays. If I can’t chuck *just one* glass bottle into the bin before 8:00 am on a workday, how come the truck that comes around to empty the bins does its thing at 6:45 in the morning? Have you ever heard several thousand glass bottles breaking at one time inside a steel truck bed? That has always seemed out-of-whack to me and Sarah, but OK, whatever — we can live with that.

Street construction before dawn on our street is another story. Let’s also remember a few things about Germany: its energy costs are higher, its weather is generally milder, and its people are skinflintier than what we are used to (coming from the U.S.), and the bugs aren’t nearly as bad as in MIchigan. This boils down to a lot of open windows in town during the Spring and Summer. And it really is nice to have fresh air breezes (helps the laundry dry too — see my point above about energy costs and skinflintiness).

But how can they tolerate that chainsaw before dawn!? I don’t get it. Oh yeah, and dawn is at about 6:00 am today – Regensburg is a lot further north than you might think, so the seasonal daylight swing is much more drastic here. Even if dawn is at 6 am a full two months before the summer solstice, that’s still pretty darn early for construction racket during the otherwise peaceful wee hours of the morning. Usually the most noise we get then is gentle chirping from the birds.

4 thoughts on “It’s 5:43 am — let the jackhammering begin”

  1. Cliff

    Epilogue (it’s now 7:50 am): apparently all that construction earlier this morning — which has since either stopped or gotten silent — was in connection with a complete lack of water available in our kitchen and bathroom. Directly after writing this post, I wanted to hop in the shower, brush my teeth, and maybe do a few dishes before heading off to work. No such luck: with no water to clean myself up, I guess I’m going to smell and look bad at work today. Great. Maybe it counts toward cultural immersion.

    When I asked Sarah about it, she said she saw a notice from REWAG (the local power and water authority) yesterday afternoon the front door of the building on her way out of the house. But it was gone when she came back later. @§%/^°&!?

    Oh, good, there goes the chainsaw again. I’d hate to think they woke my butt up at 5:30 for nothing.

  2. Tammy

    Yeah right, like you would have washed those dishes if the water was on!

  3. Carolyn

    What was that you mentioned about being grumpy a couple of posts ago? Lighten up my dear brother, for Max and I have ordered the chair covers! Let’s celebrate!! Seriously, it’s spring and you have that beautiful bridge over the river. Focus on the positive!

  4. Cliff

    You’re right of course — there’s plenty of good stuff to focus on. It’s a little chillier again today (probably for the rest of the week), but we’re gearing up for our France trip and we’re rarin’ to go. Gotta take pictures of the lavender fields in Provence…maybe they’ll be in bloom. Either way, the drive from Nice to Remuzat is supposed to be breath-taking.

    You should skype us sometime soon on a weekend if you have time and give us an update on the planning in general.

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