Ah, good old Dreieich. The town I spent most of my youth in. The town where I went to high school. The town that shaped me, for better or for worse. Here goes...

The funniest thing about Dreieich (or: Three Oaks Wood) is that it consists of the smaller towns of Dreieichenhain, Buchschlag, Sprendlingen, Götzenhain and Offenthal. These used to be autonomous until 1977 when they were joined into a single unit. Over time, Dreieich (now at a population of approx. 40000) had grown quite a bit until several of the town borders simply grew together.

Dreieich sits snugly between the somewhat larger towns of Langen, Neu-Isenburg and Dietzenbach. It is not far from the large city and economic capital of Germany, Frankfurt am Main. Somewhat farther away, but still within driveable distance is Darmstadt, the student city. Because of the close proximity, Dreieich has excellent mass transit connections to Frankfurt and Offenbach, which leads to many of the inhabitants working their day jobs there.

The unofficial central hub of Dreieich is, here it comes, the ARAL gas station in Sprendlingen. This may make the town seem somewhat hickish, though I assure you that isn't so. But if you're driving to work in Frankfurt, you pass central Sprendlingen and past the ARAL. If you're going to a club in Darmstadt, you'll probably pass the ARAL on your way through Langen. Going to Rhein-Main Airbase a couple kilometers away from Buchschlag? Guess where you'll stop for gas to get there. Consequently this is where a lot of people run into each other, especially weekend nights. The occasional fight will break out between Turks, Russians and/or local German youths, since this is where you hang out at 3 o'clock in the morning after somebody's party is over and you need that six pack of Binding or pre-packaged tunafish sandwich before stumbling home to sleep. Ah, the days...

Yes, it does sound like there isn't much to do in my old beautiful town. And that is for the most part true if you're a growing teenager. There is the Klamotte though, one of the more well-known bars in Dreieich, located in Sprendlingen on the Offenbacher Strasse (street). You'll have the old farts at the bar, and pretty much everybody else from 14 to 28 sitting at the tables. There's moody lighting, Alternative or Classic Rock and cheap drinks. Most of the local youth comes here at LEAST once a month.

If you're up for sightseeing, there is definetely the Altstadt to see. They exist in many German towns, remnants of medieval times, sections of the town that consist of centuries old houses, often within a castle wall with accompanying crumbling castle. Dreieichenhain has such a place. Along it's cobblestone main road (the Fahrgasse) are many small cáfes and ice cream parlors, along with assorted smaller stores. Don't miss the remnants of the old Burg (castle) at the end of road, they've held out for around 800 years. Shows such as Jazz in der Burg take place during the warmer seasons in the old amphitheater and provide seating for a few hundred people.

Dreieich is a town where crime is very low, such things as muggings are very rare and people can safely walk home at night. The only casualties are the occasional telephone cell being trashed my bored, drunk youths. Because of the low crime rate Dreieich has become one of the commercial centers in the area, next to Frankfurt. There are also several high tech firms resident. Dreieich's continued growth both in economic viability and property values have warranted both a Walmart and McDonalds in the commercial sector of Sprendlingen. Thank you, United States!

All in all, Dreieich may not seem like the most interesting place to live, but it is safe, there are several schools and the surrounding area is good for job hunting. You will find most things you need in the town itself or in the surroundings cities. In short, this is a good place to raise kids. Believe me, I was.

*Sniff* Now you have me all sentimental. And it's only been 3 weeks (and counting)...

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