Posted by: Moira Drexler | July 3, 2011

Life in Germany……German words that sound inappropriate in English.

Living the last ten years in Germany has certainly brought a lot of misunderstandings but also a lot of uncontrollable  giggles because some German words just sound so inappropriate in English.  I just cannot help it.  English is my mother tongue and nothing will change it.  But here are some things that have tickled me stupid over the last years.

When I first arrived in Erlangen, I noticed a white van driving about the city……… English, the Service the truck was offering was somewhat of a fascination.  What on earth could it be referring to? Wow, I wouldn’t been seen dead driving around on this set of wheels!

The VAG Service vans and trucks in Erlangen

Can you imagine Girls?  A VAG service truck!  (We had already been to a thermal spa in Tuscany where Vaginal Irrigation was on the list of things to do, so seeing a VAG service truck in Germany made me think, wow, these Europeans are up to date.)  Australia must be behind the times.  I asked my husband to explain.  VAG is only an abbreviation of Verkehrs AktIengesellschaft. (Public Transport Corporation.)

I will never forget either when Deb was visiting and she enquired, ‘What is the sign Blumen Eck?’  She thought it odd because reading it sounded like Blooming Heck!  Another misunderstanding……..



  1. Vaginal Irrigation? What? Is it to make the vagina more arable?

    • God only knows! Nobody I know is tempted to try it out! We have been laughing about that for years………….but arable would be a great guess!!

  2. You can get yourself into trouble if you are not careful. It happens in Italy too.

    • Yep, the VAG service truck got out of control and hit my Aussie girlfriend’s new car hear……talk about laugh…….she hadn’t seen the van before so when it crashed into her car, she got out to be greeted with the words VAG service! God, she nearly fell over laughing.

  3. I found another one on your website and didnt know if you know how funny it is…..SCHMUCK……what does it mean by the way?
    PS. I will try to make Elderberry syrup. You say to strain the liquid but do you bottle the flowers like the Hybiscus flowers in syrup???

    • Hi Ilana, Schmuck means jewellery in German. It has another meaning in Yiddish!

      Elderberry syrup is to die for home made I tell you. Strain the syrup and throw out the flowers! Not like the hibiscus flowers that I sell from Australiss.

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