Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Slightly annoyed from Berlin

I've just written an email of complaint suggestions for service improvement to Orla's new school. As in the one she's not even started yet. Yes, I believe in starting off on a good foot! Don't think I haven't been stressing over whether she'll be in negative house points on day 1 though.

We had our appointment at the school uniform shop today. Us and everyone else. You have to collect a number when you arrive and then wait until it's your turn. When it got to us, it turned out that they only have about half of the school uniform in a size that would fit Orla. Now Orla, although small, is not unusually so. I have her GP and Kinderarzt growth charts to prove it. But nonetheless, the school shop doesn't stock her size.

I half-joked "Where are M&S when you need them!" to which I was told by a member of staff that they had previously bought school uniform from there (whether for the shop or for personal use wasn't made clear) and should order some. Now that really annoyed me. Both the school handbook and the uniform order sheet state that the uniform must be ordered through the shop. And given that it's just 4 days before Orla starts, I don't have time to get her uniform from there. If we'd had this appointment even a month ago then we could even have bought it in the UK, tried it, taken it back and exchanged it. And for a lot less money too.

Instead I felt compelled to spend 44 Euros on two skirts that are too big and which I either have to spend more money on to have them professionally adjusted or have to re-sew myself. And for that price she could have had 14 M&S skirts that do fit.

On top of that they seemed to have no navy shorts for sport left for her to even try. I was told just to go and buy some plain navy ones from somewhere else. Unless you live in Germany, you probably don't realise that this is mission impossible. Germany doesn't believe in stock replenishment (I may have mentioned my horror at this in earlier posts) and now the shops are empty of anything summery and are currently in the midst of selling fleeces, rainwear, and tights (for boys). They don't even have schoolwear as the German schools are already all back from the summer break. Handy, huh? So far I have checked 3 stores, and frankly, I had better plans for how to spend my last few days with Orla before she starts school than scouring Berlin for shorts.

There were a few other things that annoyed me like the fact that they couldn't have decided what house Orla will be in before school starts, which means I need to beg Stevie for a loan of the car just to get out there to buy a coloured t-shirt, but hey, I hate to moan....:-)


  1. For some reason, I think because I have never seen a single child in school uniform here, I was totally surprised that you had to go and buy Orla school uniform. And also at the mention of 'houses', which took me back a bit to being totally confused about being in a 'house' at primary school when there weren't actually any houses. Anyway, I was in Green, and thus got to wear a small round green badge for 8 years (or thereabouts). Oh, the memories. What houses do they have here?

  2. Oh no, I think we might be enemies! I was in Blue house and wore a blue badge. I think Orla's houses are Amythyst, Opal, Ruby, & Sapphire. (Hark at her!)

    ...I don't think she even gets a badge. How rubbish.

    I quite like school uniform for the fact that at least Orla and I won't have to battle each day about what she's going to wear. But on the other hand, I do begrudge paying so much for what is still polyester. I feel for that price they could make the skirts out of wool (not knitted, the stuff they make suits from), it would look a lot nicer too.


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