Friday, 19 August 2022

Second Week Back

The third week back home since my Yorkshire Holiday is almost over (at least work-wise), and I have not even said anything about the 2nd week

Monday (August 8) was sunny and windy, which made the 28C pleasant enough for a nice long walk after work. 

It was almost the same (sunny and windy, around 29C) on Tuesday, when I met up with my sister after work. We went to our favourite wine bar/shop so that I could buy a bottle of a wine I had particularly liked at a tasting there back in June - and I was lucky in getting the last bottle they had. It was for my Mum's birthday later that week. 

From there, it was just across the road to the palace grounds. The late summer flowers were beautiful, but of course the long dry spell, intense heat and wind have been taking their toll on the gardens. My sister took this picture of a particularly beautiful flower bed:

We were getting thirsty by now and a bit peckish, so the Irish Pub was our next stop. A table in the shade was just right for us, and since I had not eaten fish & chips while in Yorkshire, I did so now - I know it's not the same, but I quite like them there nonetheless.


On Wednesday, my Dad had to go back to hospital. This was a planned stay for a minor operation. His Covid test had of course resulted negative, but a man who was in the same room later tested positive - meaning my Dad was moved to a room on his own (which he didn't mind), and we were not allowed to visit (which we did mind very much).

Like the previous Wednesday, once again I went for a leisurely "run" (more a trundle!) in the fields before work, and before it got too warm for it. In the afternoon, I rang my uncle (Mum's big brother) and spoke to him for quite a while; we'd not heard from each other in a long time, and I was getting worried as to how he and my aunt were doing.

I wrapped up the day with a short evening walk on the fields.

The weather remained the same on Thursday. My sister and I met at our parents' place after work, to help prepare the rooms for a change. 

My parents have what in German is called a maisonette flat, with a staircase in the open-plan living/dining/kitchen area leading to a 2nd bedroom and bathroom upstairs. Until now, the upstairs part was my Dad's, with my Mum having the downstairs bedroom and bathroom. It has become nearly impossible now for my Dad to master those stairs, and so they have swapped rooms.

A lot of carrying things up and down was involved, but of course more needs doing eventually. We just had to make sure everything was ready for when Dad would be back from hospital.

Friday (August 12) was here - my Mum's birthday! She turned 78. Her birthday was not quite what she would have liked; from the moment she got up until late afternoon, all she did was work, sort, organise. Surprisingly, Dad was released from hospital already, and brought home mid-afternoon. In between all that, friends and neighbours popped in with flowers etc., and of course the phone rang several times - an action-packed day for sure!

My sister and - a few hours later - I had been helping and done some more cleaning and shifting stuff, then went home for about an hour to shower and change. Back again, we ordered pizza, and opened a bottle of sparkling wine to toast Mum's birthday. Presents were opened, cards read and although Dad was still rather groggy after his stint in hospital, it turned out to be a nice evening after all.

On the Saturday, I was finally going to see O.K. again, for the first time since the 11th of July! As usual, the train journey was not without problems, but I arrived only about half an hour later than planned. And of course I had left enough margin for that. Mid-afternoon, a couple of friends picked us up to drive deep into the Black Forest: A group of eight of us were booked for ziplining. 

This was a present for one of the group's 50th birthday, and apart from one person in the group, none of us had ever "ziplined" before. Do you know what it is? Have a look at the website of that particular area, if you like. 

I was determined to have a go and not really worried or scared. But once the instructions started and the guide kept talking and explaining, the longer we stood there listening, the more I felt I did not want to do this. It was purely my gut reacting, not my mind, and I was quite surprised (and somewhat disappointed) by how I felt. In the end, I was the only one of the eight who did not go - everybody else did, and loved it!

For the roughly two hours they were away, I stayed at the base and enjoyed the peace and quiet of the woodland. With me were two others who had only come along for the company, not intending to zipline. So the three of us had a nice long chat, and at two points, we could watch the others swish along the steel cables across the valley. We took pictures, knowing full well that what we could see rather clearly with the naked eye would look just like a pin prick in the photos.

Clicking on the pictures enlarges them; maybe you can spot the person zipping across then:


Once everyone was safely back on the ground, we piled again into the two cars we had used to get here, and drove a bit further up into the woods until we reached a tiny hamlet, consisting of a former typical Black Forest farm turned restaurant and two or three houses nearby. The place is popular for its regional food and beautiful surroundings, and without booking tables we would not have had a chance.

Everyone enjoyed their food and drink, and then the sun set and the super moon appeared! With no town, no street lights etc. around, the nightly sky was almost magical to look at, and the moonrise was truly spectacular. Again, what we saw with the naked eye was MUCH bigger and better than what my poor quality photos can convey.


We even spotted shooting stars - it was one of the few nights when the Perseides are visible.

Sunday was the hottest day of the week at 32C. It did not stop us from going for a walk/hike we have done several times before, finding the shade of the woodland the best place to be. About 15 km and a few hours later, we were back at O.K.'s cottage and had coffee with vanilla ice. Before our evening meal, we visited his parents, enjoying Aperol Spritz on the patio behind their house.

26 comments:

  1. Wow! I checked out the ziplining on YouTube and I don't think I would have done it either. It looks like fun but I am not a fan of heights!
    Sounds like a lovely week and Happy Birthday to your Mom! Hope your Dad has recovered from his minor surgery and has settled into his new bedroom. I am glad you and your sister live near your parents' home so you can help them out. I am sure they are thankful and, of course, you will never regret it.

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    1. My Dad likes his new bed, but to be honest, he can sleep well almost anywhere ­čśŐ
      It is good to be within easy walking distance of my parents. A friend of mine whose mother still lives in our town needs a lot of care and assistance now. My friend married and moved to Switzerland 20+ years ago and is now constantly travelling back and forth, but of course she can not be there at very short notice and not every week, either.

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  2. I think you did well to go with your 'gut' feeling rather than try and force yourself! But then you probably know me well enough by now to guess that I wouldn't have signed up for something like that to start with (not even when I was younger) ;-)
    Glad you were able to rearrange things for your parents so that it works for them.

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    1. I was really looking forward to the ziplining and was truly surprised by my sudden bad feeling about it. Everybody else enjoyed it, and it was perfectly safe; maybe if I had another chance I would do it.

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  3. Wow! Great photos. Love the flowers!

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  4. No zipliner here, thank you very much! The scenery is beautiful and I'm sure the zipping is exciting for those with a dare-devil mind set, but as Dawn said, "not even when I was younger."
    I love your photos and enjoy your posts. Personal note: I now live three miles from my daughter, and it is a great comfort as I age, knowing she is just a few minutes away.

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    1. Maybe I would give it a try if I had another chance…
      Good to know you live close to your daughter now, Jill.

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  5. Nachtr├Ąglich alles Gute zum Geburtstag f├╝r deine Mutter. W├╝nsche deinem vater gute gesundheit.

    Practicing German (though I had help with these two--know many of the words, but not always the placement). I will be taking a trip to some places in November which will require that I speak (at least, I think it requires) some German. I refuse to travel to any country without at least knowing some basic phrases. Took German when I lived there as a youth and then throughout high school in the US, but we all know the phrase, "use it or lose it," and it applies double to language retention. Ich lerne t├Ąglich. W├╝nsch mir Gl├╝ck.

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    1. Vielen Dank liebe Mary f├╝r Deine guten W├╝nsche!

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    2. Thank you, Mary! Like you, I don‘t like being somewhere where the language is totally alien to me, especially if I can not even read signs.
      Where are you going in November?

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    3. Munich, Passau, Linz, Krems, Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest. W├╝nsch mir viel Gl├╝ck mit Ungarisch!

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    4. Danke, Mary! Ungarisch ist nicht einfach, glaube ich. It sounds like a cruise on the Danube (except for the Munich bit, of course).

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  6. Oddly I've done a zipline in Oz but nothing like that one. The one thing that struck me most in your post, though, was the term "The late summer flowers". ARGH!!

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    1. What flowers are out in your garden right now, Graham? I remember you showing us pictures of it, and it looked beautiful.

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    2. I wouldn't know how to start counting them all, Meike.I would think there are not far away from a hundred different types of flowers starting with 9 different roses, hundreds each of Mombretia and Crocosmia, Japanese Anenomes, Rozanne Geraniums, Lavatera, Irish Feabane, Leucanthemum and and then things like Gladiolii, Hostas, Sisyrinchium, Sempervivum, Sedum, Yellow Loostrife, Begonias, Persicaria, Helichrysum, Dicentra, and annuals like Mesenbryenthemum (Livingstone Daisies), Petunias, Lobelia, Snapdragons, various types of poppies and more that I can't see as I type this. Then there are all the 'wild flowers' which I seed. Of course I've only mentioned the ones that are flowering at the moment (I forgot the Day Lillies just outside the window) and there are many of which there are just a few specimens.

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    3. Well my goodness Graham! You are a virtual arboretum! I would love to see some photos.

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    4. Yes, Graham, wouldn't it be time for a garden post with photos? Your list conjures up a beautiful vision, and I would like to compare that image I have in my mind with photos of the real place.
      I love snapdragons for being sweetly old-fashioned, and also gladioli in all their showiness. Petunias remind me of my childhood; they must have been really popular in the 1970s, for I remember them being "everywhere" in peoples' gardens and on balconies.

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    5. Oddly, as I was looking at the list with a view to doing a post it struck me that I have never had Petunias in my garden. It's not an important point but I had a look to see what I had seen that had made me write that. It was, in fact, a bed of Violas (which previously had been planted with Pansies) and my brain got muddled.

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    6. Well, your "muddling" conjured up a nice memory for me, so thank you for that!

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  7. Oh dear Meike, I never thought you would be a scaredy cat at the zipline venue! Mind you, it reminds me of when I climbed up to a ten metre diving platform above a swimming pool and just could not go through with the intended dive.

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    1. I never thought I'd chicken out at the last minute, either. But I decided to listen to my gut feeling and do not regret it - I still had a beautiful afternoon there in the woods, and later a nice evening with our group of friends.

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    2. *Meike and the Shooting Stars* could be the title of a children's novel.
      Haggerty

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    3. You could provide the words and Neil the illustrations.

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  8. I hope your dad is doing well after his operation.

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    1. Thank you, Laura. He is not doing well but at least he is still around.

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