For myself and O.K., work began again last Monday after the Christmas/New Year break. It was good to see everyone at work again, and the first days were not so busy as to already erase the feeling of being well rested.
Still, I was surprised at how knackered I felt on Wednesday night - with only three working days under my belt!
It started to snow on Wednesday afternoon, and my neighbours' gardens and houses looked like this on Thursday morning around 8:00:
I loved the blue-ish morning light before proper daylight.
Just before lunch, this was my view across the Eastern half of Ludwigsburg from my office on the 9th floor:
It snowed again on Friday, so much so that visibility was very limited:
By the time I arrived home shortly before 5:30 pm, this was the view from my kitchen window:
An hour later, I was on my way to O.K.'s. The train trip there went a bit different than planned: Instead of taking a local train to Stuttgart and from there, an InterCity which would take me directly to Offenburg with no further changing of trains, I found out that the local train I meant to get on was cancelled and the IC 90 minutes late.
The alternative offered required two changes, but I was glad for the opportunity to end up with a total delay of only half an hour by taking a different local train to Stuttgart, from there a TGV (Train Grande Vitesse, a French high-speed train that reduces travel time between Stuttgart and Paris to about 3 hours!), and for the last bit from Karlsruhe to Offenburg, an ICE (InterCity Express).
I must admit I was rather exhausted by the time I arrived there, but O.K. made it well worth by serving a delicious evening meal of salad, bread, our favourite types of cheese and a bottle of red. (Of course it would have been well worth even without anything to eat - just seeing O.K. is enough reason for me!)
Saturday saw the snow being washed away by rain, and when I arrived home on Sunday night (with both my trains being punctual on the dot!), there was not a single snowflake left to see.
On TV, we see the masses of snow in other parts of Germany and Austria, with thousands of skiing holiday guests being stuck in small towns and villages where all roads leading to and from those places are blocked by snow and fallen trees. Some people have been unwise enough to go skiing off the official slopes, and several have died in avalanches.
We were talking about this yesterday, and I said that I'd probably not even start my holiday right now if I had booked something in one of the places so badly affected. The firemen, Red Cross staff, volunteers and other helping hands are busy enough as it is.
Today is a mix of cloudy and sunny; not very cold. It gives us a welcome break before more rain or sleet forecast as the week moves on.