Shuttered

After a delightful albeit short weekend trip with no kids and no husband, I’m back in Germany and back in the swing of things.  Screech has started daycare three mornings per week, and T-Rex is back in kindergarten.  Unfortunately, one thing that is not back to normal is the afternoon nap.  Why?  Because someone decided our building needed new windows.

I’ve never seen windows replaced in the US, but I was under the impression you just pop! out goes the old and in goes the new.  Well, well, well, that certainly is not the case here.

Our building is at least 30 years old, maybe more.  Though the paint was peeling and the winter wind noticeably came through the cracks, I’m not sure why now was the time to upgrade.  What ever happened to German quality, “it’ll last you forever”?

So, since the end of July, we have endured countless hours of deafening noise.  It’s like trying to curl up next to a jackhammer.  Aint’ happenin’.  You see, the workers have to cut the old windows out… of the concrete.  We have four “normal” windows, two balcony window/door combos, and an additional door to the main balcony.  All those pups had to be yanked out and fully replaced.

That’s gotta take forever!  Yeah, you betcha.  It took the team an entire day to cut a huge hole in our bedroom and then install the new window/door/wall.  In fact, it took them a week just to put up the scaffolding.  Can’t work too hard, ya know.

Thank goodness we happened to be in Berlin for two of the four days.  When we arrived home, all of our things were covered in a thick layer of sawdust.  Grrrrrrreat.  I thought it was just my favorite hausmeister (super) telling the men not to bother using the plastic covers on our things because I’m an annoying American that barely speaks the Deutsch.  Nope – as it turns out, we just HAPPENED to be the apartment the team worked on during the two windiest days of the month.  I’m still cleaning sawdust out of my spice rack.

The outside blinds.

But, on the up side, these windows do have one incredibly valuable feature – shutters!  Back in our first flat here in Germany, I told you about the windows that had the blinds on the outside.  The new windows more remind me of hurricane shutters; fortunately, I see the threat of hurricanes in Germany as next to nothing.  It’s much more likely that I’ll have my mailbox robbed.

Shuttered balcony door.

Fully closed.

We were told that this tilt feature didn't come with the new windows. Hogwash - that's only if you don't have an engineer for a husband.

At least I no longer have to tape black pillowcases to the window in the boys’ room to keep out the light that so regularly wakes them in the mornings.  More sleep = always a good thing.

The only concern my worst-case-scenario mind has is – what if there’s a fire and all the shutters are closed and we need to get out?  Yeah, I think like that.  I know, I know.  Paranoid weirdo!  Luckily, I discovered that two of our windows and the other balcony door do not have the shutter feature.  Whew!

Wait, I’m on the 6th floor (7th US).  Isn’t that too high for a fire truck ladder?  Cripes!

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