The main barometer as to whether or not we’re going to be able to go somewhere is whether or not we can get our dogs spots at the Hunde Hotel. Bill sent them an email asking if they had any space for the upcoming Columbus Day weekend and was advised that they did. So, as long as the dogs are appropriately vaccinated (we need to reacquaint ourselves with the shot schedules here in Germany), we should be able to break away for a couple of nights.
I want to do this because I want a change of scenery, but I also want the chance to have the dogs try the Hunde Hotel before we go back to the States for a week next month. I don’t want to have any problems with Arran getting in trouble like he did at Camp Bow Wow in San Antonio. I doubt he will have as many problems here, mainly because the Germans don’t do things the way Americans do. We have used this boarding facility before with dogs who were less laid back than the ones we have now. We never had any issues. But it would be best if we were close by, in case Arran has issues. I don’t expect Zane will have any problems at all. He loves people and other dogs. Arran, on the other hand, can get very moody and crabby if he doesn’t have time to himself.
Zane and Arran
Another potential issue is the fact that our cars have temporary plates on them. That’s fine in this area because the local cops have no doubt seen them on lots of American cars. Other cops should know what they are, but there’s no guarantee. Bill took his car to get inspected yesterday and it needs work done before it will pass. My car is being inspected today and I expect it will pass. If it does and we decide to drive, we will drive it. But we also don’t have our international driver’s permits yet. It’s not a huge deal to get one, though it will require getting passport photos done and visiting an office or two… and whether or not we can do that before the weekend depends on whether Bill can break away to get it done.
We had international permits last time we were here. They were good for one year and we never actually used them or renewed them when they expired, though we did drive to other countries. However, if you get caught without one, you can end up with fines… or so I’ve been told. The USAEUR license that we get is only good in Germany.
We may end up taking a train somewhere, which is just as well… Train rides can be fun… or they can be a nightmare, as we discovered in France back in May!
We flipped a coin last night to decide where we should go: France, Germany, Belgium or Switzerland. We flipped three times and Belgium was the winner. If we go to Belgium, I think I’d want to take the car. That way, we can bring back some beer. Last time we went to Brussels, we went by train. It was fun, but it took several hours to get there. Since we no longer have the luxury of four day weekends, time is more of a premium.
Although Belgium won the coin toss, we may just go somewhere in Germany. There are still a lot of places I haven’t seen yet. And once our cars have the appropriate license plates and we’re completely “legal”, we will be within a couple of hours of France and Switzerland anyway.
Anyway, I hope to make a new discovery this weekend!
ETA: My husband has just informed me that my car passed inspection and has appropriate plates now. Just have to get the Toyota squared away now.