Monday, February 13, 2012

Gettin' The Car - (Germany) Day 49

This morning PT was inside the gym. We ended up doing a ton of jumping jacks (or as the army calls them...Side Straddle Hops) with some sprints and other various runs to half court and back. It was enough to get a little sweat going.

I didn't end up going into work after PT, my boss picked me up and we headed to Mannheim to pick up my car which finally arrived. I've been looking forward to getting our car for a while. We arrived at the Spinelli Barracks post which does all the shipping of POVs for our area. The whole process was pretty silly. Everything is located in very close proximity to each other.

The first stop was to get temporary plates for the vehicle. So I go in and fill out all the required paperwork and pay a fee of $30. I also have to say that being in the military, it was nice to have USAA as our insurance. I didn't have to show any proof of insurance or anything, it was all done automatically and in their system. I would actually recommend USAA banking and insurance to anyone in the military…coming from me this is a big deal because I don't use banks, I only use non-profit credit unions. Anyways…back to my story…I get two temporary license plates in return. We then take the plates and head over to pick up our car.

At the second stop I had to give my temporary plates to them and fill out even more paperwork. I then inspected my car to make sure no damage occurred during transit. Once finished my plates were put on and I was good to go.

We then drove over to the third stop inspection point to have the car inspected. I had previously purchased two required items needed as part of the inspection, a reflective triangle and a first aid kit.. The inspectors checked it out and gave it a thumbs up.

The fourth stop was back at the original first stop once again. I then had to take off the temporary plates that they gave to me and turn them in so I could get permanent plates. After some more paperwork and paying another $30, I was given the permanent plates to put on the car. I was also then good to go…at least for two years until I have to renew it. (I think getting the whole temporary plates and putting them on to drive 200 yards and back was kind of stupid)

We then left Mannheim and headed back to Heidelberg to the shopping center. I went to my fifth and final stop which was the PX customer service. From there I was able to get a fuel ration card. With this card I get 400 liters a month at US gas prices at Esso gas stations here in Germany. I was given a prepaid debit type card that I have to refill with money at any shoppette. I put $100 on it and then headed to the office. I arrived at 1330, so the whole process took a little over half a day.

The afternoon at work was uneventful. I found some training on JKO for German Headstart that I enrolled in and started. I'm not sure if I get credit or what, but I figured it will give me something to do when I do have the chance to get on a computer. SPC Whirlwind needed a ride home, so I was able to leave early and give him a ride. We stopped and I filled up the car…I'm so glad I don't have to pay the Euro price! It would have cost over 75 Euro (which is around $100) and instead I paid $50.

Once home we had my wife's cousin and her husband as guests. They drove down from England to visit for the week, so we will have some company for a while. We had a nice dinner with them and also watched the Grammy awards. Looking forward to visiting with them and getting to know them.

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