My parents kicked me out at 16 and I started drinking....

Mr. AUSSTEIGEN himself and author Jaclyn Stuart present at the "Experience Provence" event for the French Connection Exchange Program group in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.

Helicium presents at French Connection in Wisconsin. Send your kids away to Europe! 

by Greg Gottsacker

[NOTE: SEE BELOW FOR A FREE GIVEAWAY!]

 
ALLE AUSSTEIGEN!” My dad yelled that German phrase at us kids a lot when we were growing up.  It means “Everybody get out”.
 
I think a lot of dads say this phrase, but imagine the outright effect it has when said in German!  
 
My childhood was littered with such snippets of German phrases and imperatives, mostly isolated without sentence structure (not very German), but always pertinent.  Ja. (Very German)
 
Whatever the pidgin imperatives were, it certainly stuck in our household. 
 
Three out the four kids “got out” of the house at age 16 and went to Germany for 6 months to live with a Deutsche Family near Stuttgart.   If this was subliminal messaging via my Papa throughout the years, it worked. 
 
BUT…not every child has the charming luck of a dad’s German expletives to inspire him to leave the country and discover the motherland.   
 
This is why Helicium Glass has recently been involved with an exchange program in Wisconsin called “French Connection” which has been organizing trips for young students to Provence, France.
 
Being part of an exchange program is scary at age 16!  It has been however, an endless gift to me and has shaped me into the person I am today.  Helicium’s participation and donation hopes to encourage such activities and give some exposure to the results of program involvement!  
 
I can’t put my finger on the exact element that changed me while I was there…legal drinking age 16, no curfew, open campus at high school, train rides to Berlin by myself, cigarette machines on the wall at school, ballroom dance lessons…..basically complete autonomy! 

You get your driver’s license in the States at age 16—but are you really autonomous?
 
Now would I have done some of those “vices” like drink beer and wine at age 16 in the USA anyway? Absolutely.   However, in Germany I was able to go to the store and choose all by myself my Beck’s lager and my first Riesling.   
 
A 16-year-old in the USA is a selfish mercenary.  Put him in Europe for 6 months, he returns a matured and ready pirate.   Please support your local exchange programs--you'd be surprised at the diversity, culture and interesting people that are pirating around your area.

Don't forget about the free giveaway!
Quantity of books are limited, so act now and get your free Jaclyn Stuart signed copy of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Wine and Food Pairing" with purchase of a set of 4 Helicium Grand from www.heliciumglass.com   Just enter "pairing" as the discount code at check-out and we'll ship your glasses with the free book! 

Sincerely, 

Greg Gottsacker 

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Gregory Gottsacker
Gregory Gottsacker

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