I am now a Verkehrssünder. That is a real German word, and it translates to "traffic sinner."
|This is my mug shot.|
Clearly I have to get better at seeing all signs on the roads in Germany. I surely would not knowingly speed (quite the opposite, actually - though most of this highway has a speed limit of 100 km/h, I hover between 80 and 90. That's fast enough for me.). Unlike many places on German highways and roads which don't have speed limit signs because drivers are supposed to know what the speed limit is based on the type of road they're driving on (and there IS a sign indicating what type of road it is - too bad they can't also add a speed limit sign for those of us who are mainly concentrating on not getting killed while merging), I'm sure there was a sign after I exited the Autobahn that indicated the Geschwindigkeitsbegrenzung as:
It's a sensible speed limit for an area with on- and off-ramps, merging traffic, and a turn-off to a gas station. But I missed it, probably because I was trying unclench my fists from the steering wheel after those 25 minutes on the Autobahn. They clocked my wicked ass going 79 km/h, or rather that's what they're charging me with after the Toleranzabzug (permissiveness deduction). Nine km/h is equal to 5.5 mph. Wisconsin cops wouldn't even bother with that, but then again all they had to do here was snap my picture and mail me a letter rather than pull me over, check my license and registration, write a ticket, etc.. The missive included the relevant bank account numbers of the Bußgeldstelle, to which I was instructed to wire transfer €10 within one week. (€10 = $13.31) I briefly considered mailing them a photograph of this:
For the record, this is my first speeding ticket since 1988.
And yes, the €10 taught me an important lesson, and I will go forth and sin no more.