Category Archives: Things You Didn’t Know


How to get AFN television at home off-post

  How can I get AFN television at my home? We asked the professionals, and here’s what they said.   If base cable is not available to you the viewer, then you can receive AFN via satellite if you have the required equipment. AFN does not charge for programming, and…

May 9th, 2016 Things You Didn't Know

The commissary surcharge explained

Defense Commissary Agency news release   FORT LEE, Va. – The commissary surcharge – the 5 percent added to every customer’s bill – is not a tax. That’s just one of several facts about the surcharge that even some of the savviest commissary customers are sometimes surprised to learn.  …

April 26th, 2016 News, Things You Didn't Know

Things you didn’t know: Maypoles in Germany

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — Flowers have started to bloom, the sun has finally (yes, finally) peeked out from behind the winter clouds and the sound of chirping birds fills the air. Yes, spring is in the air, summer is following closely behind, and in Germany, the first of May is a…

April 13th, 2016 Things You Didn't Know

Things you didn’t know: April Fools’ Day in Bavaria

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — If stereotypes were true, Germans wouldn’t have a sense of humor. Fortunately, those of us living in Bavaria know that’s false.   Case in point: April Fools’ Day, or Aprilscherz in German.   The Germans have a long tradition of joking on a personal and even national…

March 29th, 2016 Things You Didn't Know

Things you didn’t know: Sundays in Germany

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — The term “lazy Sunday” originated well before Andy Samberg decided to rap about it on Saturday Night Live, but living abroad will bring a heightened awareness to the fitting phrase.   Here in Germany, Sundays are sacred. Shops are closed and the hustle and bustle of town…

March 21st, 2016 Things You Didn't Know

Things you didn’t know: German Bockbier…for monks, it’s what’s for dinner

  MUNICH — While I can’t pinpoint the origin of this story, it’s not going to stop me from telling it. And, according to numerous tourism sites and “legend,” it’s true. Promise.   The story goes something like this: In the early 16th century, Paulaner monks of the Neudeck ob…

March 3rd, 2016 Things You Didn't Know

Understanding IMCOM’s Voluntary Placement Program

  GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — The Army agency that handles the day-to-day operations of all of the Army’s installations is giving its current employees an opportunity to volunteer for career-broadening assignments within the command before considering outside applicants.   Installation Management Command’s Voluntary Placement Program, or IVPP, gives first consideration to…

February 29th, 2016 Things You Didn't Know

Things you didn’t know: Carrying pepper spray in Germany

  GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — German laws allow you to carry certain forms of pepper spray, but Army regulations prohibit you from bringing it on-post.   Recent reports of an increase in crime and terrorism across Europe, such as those in Cologne and Paris, have raised concerns regarding personal safety.  …

February 1st, 2016 Health & Lifestyle, News, Things You Didn't Know

College students eligible for gov’t-funded travel to visit active duty parents overseas

  GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — College students with parents stationed overseas may qualify for a government-funded round trip visit plus the shipment of unaccompanied baggage, according to Army and federal regulations.   The Army regulation on overseas travel, chapter 5, and the Joint Federal Travel Regulation, paragraph 7155, grant military students…

January 31st, 2016 Health & Lifestyle, Things You Didn't Know, Travel

Things you didn’t know: Fasching is Germany’s most colorful time of year

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — It officially began on the 11th day of the 11th month at 11:11 a.m., but the hoopla is just around the corner.   Fasching is Germany’s carnival season, a time of festivity and merrymaking.   It’s an excuse to break rules (and poke fun at those who…

January 29th, 2016 Things You Didn't Know