When we waved goodbye to our mattress in Virginia (which was loosely tied to the roof of a stoned undergrad’s car and about to partake on a high-speed journey up I-81*), I don’t think we realized that it was the last queen bed we’d been sleeping in for a while. Everywhere we’ve lived in Germany, and in nearly every hotel we’ve stayed at, there have been two twin beds pushed together. Even more bizarre, the hotels sometimes have one bed frame designed to hold two separate twin mattresses. In either case, each bed has its own twin-sized comforter.
Do I like this system? On first glance, it’s hard not to see it as a reflection of, well, cultural uptightness. 1950s American television, anyone? But if done properly, it actually works fine. I’m a light sleeper, so I can see where having the separate mattresses and blankets makes for a more comfortable night. In most hotels we’ve been in, there’s not been an actual barrier between the two mattresses. But I can never forget how hard various friends laughed when I would give them the tour of our last (and most utterly ragtag) apartment, where the beds were pushed together, but used two stunningly different bedframes and were completely different heights.
Also, don’t spend time looking for that missing sheet. It’s not there. German beds consist of the elastic-edged bottom sheet and a comforter with a duvet cover. I’m not sure if they are exactly twin sized, but you should probably pack a sheet from home if sleeping right under the comforter will leave you feeling unhinged and un…comforted. Ha.
*Godspeed, old mattress. Who knows if you ever even made it to your destined dorm room.