Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Winter Walk

All of last week, it was bright and sunny, but very cold. Nights went down to -12 Celsius (around 10 F), and it was still around -4 C (25 F) or so during the day, with the exception of secluded sunny spots where no wind would reach.

O.K. was here for the weekend, and we took advantage of the sunshine both Saturday and Sunday. Because it was so cold, we left the house equipped as if for a polar expedition, and could only stay out for a few hours at a time, making sure we'd always be moving. But it was beautiful, and certainly worth braving the cold!

On Sunday, we walked to Monrepos, a small palace by a lake that was planned and built as part of the large estate of Ludwigsburg's residential palace. You've seen the place on my blog before, for instance last July. But you have never seen it with snow and ice, right?

The sky really was as brilliantly blue as in this picture:


The lake was completely frozen over, and the ice thick enough to carry hundreds of people:




Officially, it is forbidden to step on the ice. But the sign is mainly up for the purpose of self-defense; if anyone should break through the ice (and they do in each of the years when the lake is frozen, usually unreasonable folks who think it is still safe even after several frost-free days), they can not sue anybody, and only have themselves to blame.
Still, it is somewhat ironic to see all those people playing ice hockey, skating, sledging or walking right in front of the sign.



In spite of there being so many people, the atmosphere was great; relaxed family fun on a Sunday afternoon. People were queuing for mulled wine and hot sausages, children were laughing, dogs were having fun and couples walked hand in hand.

We took a different route back home, via the fields and through the deer park you have also seen several times on my blog, just never with snow.


The stag in this picture really has only one antler. (If you click on the picture, it enlarges, and you should be able to see it better.)

This one was complete. He looked very interested when I was rummaging in my bag, but when he realised only a mobile phone (camera) came out and not a paper bag with bread or other treats, he went back to what he had been doing before.



We covered three parks that day - the one around the lake, the deer park and the palace grounds. By now, the sun was much lower than when we had started. Two and a half hours after we had left the house, we were back - ready for mugs of steaming hot coffee and a piece of cake.


If winter is like that, I don't mind it that much. But I wouldn't mind warmer weather now, either!

30 comments:

  1. I love the sound of your German winter! Ice skating and snowy walks in the woods and mulled cider. You are so lucky to live there!

    Maybe you should carry treats for the deer next time so they won't be disappointed!

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    1. It is nice when it is like that, Jennifer. What really gets to me is having to be out and about on trains and icy platforms, when even having to wait 5 minutes is a challenge because it is so cold.

      I used to go to the park as a kid with my grandparents and feed the deer, but these days, I rarely have anything on me they would like!

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  2. It looks beautiful! If only we had more cold weather and snow here. My grandchildren want to ski every Saturday and the weather has not been cooperating! Is ice hockey popular in Germany?

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    1. Ice hockey is popular in my area. In a smaller town not far from Ludwigsburg, a few years ago a big new ice hockey arena was built for their local club. They have a fan base of fervent supporters, and you often see the team's name on bumper stickers.

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  3. BOYCOTT AMERICAN WOMEN!

    www.BoycottBitches.com

    I am an American man, and I have decided to boycott American women. In a nutshell, American women are the most likely to cheat on you, to divorce you, to get fat, to steal half of your money in the divorce courts, don't know how to cook or clean, don't want to have children, etc. Therefore, what intelligent man would want to get involved with American women?

    American women are generally immature, selfish, extremely arrogant and self-centered, mentally unstable, irresponsible, and highly unchaste. The behavior of most American women is utterly disgusting, to say the least.

    This blog is my attempt to explain why I feel American women are inferior to foreign women (non-American women), and why American men should boycott American women, and date/marry only foreign (non-American) women.

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    1. This horrible comment and the horrible blog it links to are yet another example of the kind of sick mindset that the election of Trump has normalized and encouraged. I'm so sorry this idiot showed up on your blog, Meike.

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    2. Yorkshire and Lincolnshire women are the best women in the world, closely followed by German women. Fourth in the best women list come American women, closely followed by women from Libya and Afghanistan. Oh, just a minute - I am talking pure hogwash.

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    3. I think this is just a troll, trying to get a reaction. Poor thing.

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    4. If it had not been for your replies, I would have simply deleted the comment.

      Oh, and speaking of American women - what about American men? I think we have a prime example at the helm of the nation right now. Isn't he super attractive with his lovely hair, strong facial features, sensual mouth and well-toned body? And doesn't he have a way with words to charm himself into every lady's heart? *Sigh*

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    5. Haha! You tell him, Meike!!!! :)

      Real men aren't threatened by strong women.

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    6. That comment did the rounds ages ago - it's just unpleasant spam.

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    7. ...which is why I would have immediately deleted it, had I seen it before anyone commented on it.

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    8. But then I would've missed the description "sensual body" which I'm afraid I'm having difficulty getting out of my head ...lol

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    9. Sensual mouth and well-toned body, Val :-D

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  4. I absolutely love days like the ones you describe here. Fresh, crisp and sunny make nothing nicer than wrapping up and going for some decent walks. I did the same myself at the weekend, although our temps weren't as cold as yours our local lake did partially freeze.

    They are brave souls indeed who take to the ice, I know if I did it I would be the one to fall in. :D

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    1. I used to skate on that lake every time it was frozen over when I was a child and in my early teens, but I have not owned skates for decades now and am not keen on starting again.
      Just so that I was able to say "I was on the ice", I took a few very careful steps on the surface at an easily accessible point where I know the lake is very shallow, watched by O.K. who preferred to stay on firm ground :-)

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  5. That's the kind of winter weather I like - sharp and clear, not grey and miserable. Thanks for sharing your lovely winter pictures.

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    1. You are welcome! It has been grey and cold for the past few days now, but as I am at the office all day anyway, I don't mind.

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  6. So pretty! Once when C. was a youngster, the lake partially froze at the Monastery and we spent hours beside the lake, with C. breaking the ice with a stick and watching the ducks walk on the ice and sometimes breaking through. It should have had a sign saying the ice wasn't thick enough for a duck, let alone a human!

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    1. Yes, that sign surely would have saved a few ducks from breaking through :-)
      I imagine your winters do not often get cold enough for lakes to freeze over, and I wonder whether the lake you have showed us in a few of your posts was ever really frozen.

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  7. I told Gregg all about your beautiful winter walk last night. I think Germany would be a nice place to live. Are you guys taking American refugees? :)

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    1. We have been taking in everybody for the past years, and only now our immigration policy is beginning to become stricter. So if you hurry up a bit, you still have a good chance of coming in, you and your pets :-)

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    2. Ginger and George can come, too?!!!! Okay, that does it! German can't be all THAT hard to learn, can it? :)

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    3. Umm... well, it IS, actually, but you're a bright young thing, Jennifer :-) Oh, and don't forget to bring Marco!

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  8. It's a topsy turvy world... Here, we've been having unusually mild January weather, temperatures well above zero most days (and mostly grey and foggy). Thanks for sharing your blue sky! :)

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    1. Grey and cold most of this week, too, until yesterday, when the sun was back in the afternoon. We're in for much milder weekend, they say, with temperatures up to +8C!

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  9. Great wintry shots. Our winter has yet to make any kind of statement; in fact, it has yet to fully declare itself!

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    1. Ours has started to end - for now, at least; it could always come back. But it has been raining good part of the morning, the rain washing away much of the snow.

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  10. That reminds me of the winter of '47 (when I was 3 but can still remember it). My Grandmother used to tell of times when the River Mersey used to freeze over. It must have been really cold for that to happen.

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    1. The winters right after the war were unusually hard. I have read about that a few times. Many who had just about managed to survive the war itself perished from the hardships that came afterwards, last but not least the cold, with no proper shelter and not enough to eat.
      Thankfully, I was born decades after that, and so for me, the sight of the frozen lake brings only good memories.

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