One should never start sentences with numbers, but here goes:
30 days to go before Halloween,
84 days left until Christmas!
91 days to go until January 1, 2019.
Q4 begins today.
Now if those numbers didn´t make you panic, then you must be in a very comfortable spot!
Where, oh where has 2018 vanished to? I am still desperately trying to come to terms with this year, this month, and this week, but am also in anguish as I look ahead. On the bright side, I have learned from my mistakes in 2017, tried to remedy most of them this year, and hope to have far less issues next year.
On the radio this morning I learned another thing about the peculiarities of German law vis-a-vis culture. Since it is October 1, one is now officially allowed to trim garden hedges and bushes. According to the environmental protection law, (§39 BNatSchG), the trimming of hedges and bushes in gardens and parks is strictly forbidden between March 1 to September 30. I kid you not. Not only is this action a disturbance to the peace and peace of mind of your neighbour, but it is primarily meant to protect the birds and animals who might be nesting or breeding within the hedges and bushes. Try going against this regulation and you may face a fine up to €10.000! Since this is Germany, and like in Primary School, all children are expected to achieve certain milestones forcibly by a certain age (swim by Grade 1, pass the cycling test by Grade 3, learn your first foreign language by Grade 4, etc). of course the law extends to fauna and all the little ones are expected to be up and out by October 1. No ifs, ors, buts or extensions.
Now for me as a Filipina who grew up in countries where time and deadlines are relative, this is a concept so utterly bizarre and almost impossible to grasp. When I mentioned this at the lunch table in the office, most of my colleagues confirmed their knowledge of the law and wondered why I didn´t know about it yet. What other country gives the birds and young animals a freaking deadline to move out?
Not that it matters to the birds and the bees, but football season (for the North American readers, I mean soccer) is well underway, and so is the Oktoberfest. Furthermore, from this day forward (in Germany, there are new rules
- governing transparency of insurance products, procedures, and commissions;
- controlling the use of lead in toys;
- less healthcare coverage / subsistence for certain medicines, especially beta blockers, and some highly specialized medication for HIV, epilepsy, and certain antibiotics;
- new / additional topics for the drivers´test and radio communications license.
The list goes on and on. Who knew that October 1 could create such havoc?