Tag Archives: Germany

This Air, The Rain

This day, the German summer air is laden with visible moisture – not mist – enough to blur and blue the forest trees skirting the narrow field beside which I sit. Australian air is intense, like eyes piercing secrets.
I had not known there was other air. Continue reading

And the Second Little Pig Built a House…

Schluchsee in the Black Forest.

Directions: The K4989 runs parallel to a road that hugs the south side (Seebrugg train station end) of the lake. Take this road and park in the designated area next to the road. Cross the causeway and turn right. The house is not far. Continue  for some lovely walks through the forest and alongside the lake.

Throbbing in the Black Forest: Sauna as an Extreme Sport

At its best a sauna is a place of extremes. And sometimes it requires all my will to take it to the max. It’s not the heat that gets me so much as the cold.

The sauna I frequent is a little hut at the bottom of the garden. (Fairytale settings just spring from the German ether – thank you, Brothers Grimm)  Around 5.30pm the potbelly is lit with pine. About an hour later it’s ready – depending on the ambient temperature and one’s predilection for heat. Fifty degrees Celsius is sufficient for my ageing parents. (Bear in mind that the highest air temperature ever recorded in Death Valley was 57°C (134°F) in July 1913.) However, for me it still feels clammy at 60 degrees.

Continue reading

Of Celery and Power

Grocers take their duties very seriously in Germany. This is a sign on a town store.

It says, “Most dream of money, power or sex. We dream of fresh and crunchy celery.”

I Spy Plenty in Germany

On a German road: a young man is zigzagged low over his rollerblades; legs, ankles and feet fast together like a dart; his hair streaming as he is pulled along by a galloping German Shepherd. Continue reading

Mountains High, Rivers Wide

I scan the landscape: in the foreground a harvested field studded by trees, a band of forest at mid-range, long blue hills interlacing like fingers into the distance. But, bizarrely, there is something beyond that, something which rises far higher in the sky than is natural. Where I anticipate the clear blue of the depths of the universe, ‘stuff’ looms, faint but imposing, stamped on a space which is normally free. Continue reading

It’s Not Just the Smell

Hay drenched in cattle urine and manure – that is one of the defining smells of the towns of southern Germany and I inhale it with gusto. This is most pleasurably done in the morning on the way to the bäckerei as wisps of steam twist from the piles into the crisp air. Continue reading