Thursday, October 31, 2013

Germany. Day 7. To Hellenbach and beyond...

It’s Thursday!!! Do you know what that means? I’m not sure I’ve told you this before, but the week looks like a bell curve to me: starts from left corner down on Monday, slowly climbs through Tuesday by Wednesday midday it’s on top of the curve and after 12 that day it starts descending towards the right hand corner which is the weekend, reaching the bottom by Friday. So I’m half way there haha I’m talking Gibberish I know!

Anyway, here is Day 7 and I want to do this separately, because I’m only left the two days we spent in Munich and that should be one post alone. Plus there is so much to say there that I could not fit everything in this blog now.

Considering this is the day we left Hellenbach, we didn’t do a lot of things, but what we did do, was- uh! – heroic! Haha Heroic for me that is, because for mom it was just funny as all hell. It’s always easy to make comments from the side than to be in the middle of the whole situation! And yes, I’m talking about riding Riddick.

I know few people who are into this kind of sport. It’s nice to watch, most likely much more fun and surely a challenge to actually do it, so my going in circles three times might not look like a lot to other people, but to me it was. First of all, whenever Nancy mentioned it in the first place, I said yeah, sure, I can do it. Then it slipped out of the conversation and in the back of my head, I was at peace that it’s probably not going to happen anyway. The week went by and we kept busy with other things so Friday morning when she said “you should join me at the stables so Mela can finally ride Riddick” I was like Oh oooo! Crap! But I still felt courageous and up to the task. Even excited when I got my fancy riding pants, brand new boots and tall socks. And the feeling remained alive all through the journey to the stables and a little before the actual moment.
Looking bright and confident... in the morning hehe
A little walk with Zoey before the "big event"
Yeah, Riddick's butt and Mela: almost the same size. Ooops! Height! haha

He was warming up to me... or so I wanted to believe
And here comes Nancy to get us all to the hall. Look at Heylee! Big girl. So much bigger horse!
Haylee walked him around the hall a few times and I swear she is a midget next to him. I think she is the height of his leg, but she did a ten times better job than I did when I took him out for a walk a few days before. I would like to blame it on the fact that outside he had more attractions to keep him ignorant to my commands than he did in the empty hall, but still – she is a natural. I mean, kids in Germany seem to grow up with horses, they don’t really fear them and riding comes as a second nature to them ever since they are small. Small kids, small horses, bigger kids, bigger horses, big kids – really big friggin’ horses! Hehe

Anyway, Haylee is done walking Riddick then Nancy gets her in the saddle and she is a grain of sand on the Frisian’s back. I don’t think he realized someone was up there, seriously! When she was done, I witnessed a sight I hadn’t seen before: Riddick galloping and running. I didn’t think he could lift those heavy butt chicks and big hooves the way he did! What a sight!
I am in awe to Haylee!
I was friggin fighting the horse when we walked, while she looks like she's got him curled around her pinky! "Horse better behave 'cause I don't have the time for your tantrums! Capisci!?!"

Look at this beauty! Best horsey ever!!!
Riddick and mommy!
Mom exchanging a few remarks with Riddick before my turn.  I am sure she wasn't taking my side! haha
And then Nancy proclaims: “Ok Mela, We’re ready.” Yeah. But I’m not; not anymore! I reluctantly move towards where she set the little ladder for me to use and climb in the saddle, but my knees feel kind of shaky. She gently suggests I should put on my helmet, which I had not even noticed and I struggle a little with it, in my own childish way. Then I get up the ladder and I put my hands on the saddle, almost deaf with excitement to Nancy’s instructions on how to move to get up there. It feels like I’m trying to get on top of jelly pudding. It takes me a minute to slowlyslowlys.l.o.w.l.y… very s l o w l y get in the saddle. Slow motion couldn’t have done it slower hahaha When I’m on top, my heart is racing faster than I could ever ride. I have no control over this, no solid anything to use and find balance. The saddle is shifting, I have my legs in the air and Riddick is not even moving. Blood leaves my cheeks and my hands grow cold as I grasp on the reins with insecure fingers. And when I grab, I don’t let go.
Mom’s filming the adventure trying to give precious advice that she wouldn’t listen or follow either if she were 5 feet above ground like I am. 

Nancy goes: “Ready when you are.” Hell… “Ready” I say, but it’s a lie. Riddick starts moving and my spine curves immediately to an extent where my head goes back and forth in a very snake like motion, nodding like those dog toys on the dashboard of a car. Mom shouts to correct my position, stand straight and stop nodding. You try it woman! I felt I was sitting on Riddick’s ass more than on his back because I could tell which ass cheek was coming up, which leg moved, ‘cause it pushed my body to follow it. Now I understood why Nancy was doing it. I am very careful to stay in the saddle, not get sick with the excitement and also follow Riddick’s every gesture. What if he doesn’t like me? At some point we pass before an opening in the wall and he takes a look at the other horses grazing outside. No, no! Riddick, think for a minute! I am so much more fun than those horses out there, free to eat green grass, out in the sun… We wouldn’t want you running to them now, would we!? He seems to read my thoughts – or maybe Nancy’s thoughts telling him to behave and we move on.
Uh uh there is Mela! haha
2nd time around and Nancy asks whether I’m up for more. Well, I survived so far, 3 can only be the magic number now so I say yes. We make a pit stop with mom so she takes a few pictures. Also, she tries to plead with Nancy to make Riddick run a little so she can see me on saddle then. Little brave lady, why don’t you take my place for a minute and then he can run! How is that? I bend on his neck petting his crest and he turns his head to me. Nancy says that whenever I do that he thinks I have treats for him. Crap! But she saves me, because she has some in her pocket. He’s happy now. We go for round three and half way to the finish line he makes some sounds and my mental dictionary fails to translate properly the message. “Ah, Nancy… what was that? Can he bear with me for another two minutes?” She laughs. “Don’t worry” she says, “that means he likes you. He’s comfortable with you.” Well, what do you know… That fells good. It feels good on top of the fact that I feel skinny too, next to his 600 kg, so I manage to surface a big smile and wave at mom as I pass her for the last time. Mom cheers my enthusiasm and newly found bravery.
Now I have to get off the horse. Aham. Nancy explains how I need to get both feet out of the saddle, bring my right leg on the same side with my left leg and then jump. HAHA HA HA! Jump! What is that, jump? From here? With my knees turned into mush because of the past 10 minutes? I don’t think so! So she brings the ladder again and talks Riddick into being patient with the retard trying to get down. Amazingly, but the slow motion seems just a little faster now, even though I still couldn’t see where I was putting my feet. The Eagle has landed! Safely! Haha. Now it’s time for mom to make more comments and for me to watch the video. So damn funny! I always am surprised at my face and voice and gestures when I see myself on camera. I seem unrecognizable. I am so horribly funny, like a duck! I laugh every time I see it. So enjoy mom's latest movie. I would advise to skip half of it as it is 6 minutes long, and other than my idiot face, you can only enjoy Riddick and mom's awesome comments - in Romanian!

Mom sharing one last moment with Zoey. Awww... love them!
We go back home and have lunch, then Nancy bakes this wonderful cake for us and we take two big slices on the train. We say goodbye to Zoey and Andy, but Haylee decides to come with us to Ansbach. She sleeps through the journey and she’s the cutest thing ever in her chair, all blond and sweet. We get there just a few minutes before the train arrives, not have enough time to say good bye and make plans for next summer. We hope Nancy and the entire family come visit us together with Finchen. This way she can meet her mom and sister. I would love to see that happen. So fingers crossed, we are really going to work to make this happen. Zoey will be walking by then!!!

We leave Nancy and Haylee with tears in our eyes, after an endless number of hugs. We wish we waved back some more but we must move the luggage inside. We find a compartment, we settle in and we start playing games. That’s why we brought the damn NASA equipment haha. But first, the cake! It’s so good, that I call Nancy back to tell her we enjoyed it thoroughly! I get a call from Anca, our next destination, and we discuss the details of our arrival in Munich in two hours. She will pick us up at their home station in Wolfratshausen (I practiced this one a lot! Haha).
On the train
Long live Candy Crush!
The two hours go by easily when you have Plants vs Zombies and Subway Surf to keep you busy. Let alone Candy Crush, that has literally taken mom over haha. We get to the Central Station (Haupbahnhof – oh yeah!), we get the tickets from the machine – I’m an expert now! – and then off to the S-Bahn. We have 30 minutes to make it, but Speedy Gonzales is our middle name so we drag our entire luggage in record time across the many layers and levels of the S-Bahn until we find the right one.

As we’re waiting for it, two security officers (the scary ones!) pass us by, with an observant eye. We sit tight and quiet, making room for the authorities. The train arrives and we get on. It’s rather empty so we get seats and try to enjoy the ride, especially that we’re going to the end of the line. Mom insists that we take a picture of the S-Bahn chart and as she does it, the flash goes on. She’s not happy and tries again. Before she puts the camera away, the two security officers show up abruptly speaking in German, very fast and all I understand is ID papier or something. And I know that doesn’t mean tickets. So I don’t even try to reach for my pocket and get them out because I know they’re trying to ID mom. Mom on the other hand, doesn’t even understand that little German so she urges me to get the tickets out thinking they’re looking for them. I relate to the people we don’t speak German but of course, the same request comesback in a crooked English. I silence mom for a moment and then explain that we were only travelers taking pictures for fun. I grab mom’s camera from her hands as she looks at me with gargoyle eyes and show them what we took pictures of. Now she understands. She smiles and becomes all agitated trying to explain herself. She blushes and she’s so adorable. They are finally convinced we are no terrorists trying to set on the alarm of some explosive device on the train with a flash light haha and we are well behave for the rest of the journey haha.
Mela before the "incident"....
hahaha I am totally inlove with this picture! Mom's innocent face after the "terrorist" episode haha "I didn't do anything. I just took a picture. Look at me, really, do I look like a bad guy?! haha Little old me!...
That's the picture that caused all the hustle and bustle!

.... Mela after the "incident" hahaha
Upon our arrival, we are welcomed by Anca and Bernie’s dad. It’s really, really lovely to see her and to meet Bernie’s father. It’s been a year almost since we saw her and we were anxiously waiting to also hug Bernie when he returned home. She speaks awesome German – considering she only had a year to learn - and for some reason I get a sense of pride in her, because I know how difficult it can be to adjust to a new country and leave everything behind.

Once at home, we settle in and catch our breath. We’re left with Anca (sadly – we hope next time we get to meet Bernie’s mom as well!) who immediately goes busy in the kitchen to prepare dinner. She keeps apologizing for stuff we don’t care about: like the room is too small, the bed is too small, the food is not ready and so on and so forth. She forgets we’re not there for the room, the bed or the food, but for her and Bernie. She sets the table with the speed of light and while we are done with the first course, Bernie calls in: he’s on his way home. Soon he joins us and we finish dinner in laughter and sharing memories. I am happy our gifts fit their lovely home – and by lovely I mean I LOVE IT! It’s my kind of place. Eventually we all go to bed. It’s Friday and it’s the end of a week worth of work for them and a 4 hours ride for us from Hellenbach to Munich.

The end. 
Wait. Final episode comes next hehe
To be continued…

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Germany. Day 5 and 6. The Mission

It’s Tuesday but I wrote this on Sunday evening, just to clarify what’s coming next. Smile! And enjoy…

Good morning again. And this is weird to say because it’s past 9PM and I’m on a plane a few thousand feet above sea level flying towards Bucharest. It’s Sunday evening still in both Germany and Romania. We had a wonderful morning and early afternoon with Bernie and Anca. A bit windy but sunny. The moment we got ready to leave, Bavaria started crying for us. Literally. With a storm. “Stay inside idiots, don’t leave just yet, this is fun.” And despite wanting to stay, we had to go. But more about Sunday when I get there.

Right now we’re still at Day 5 and 6 of our vacation.


Shopping. The final frontier. These are the continuing voyages of Mela and Mom. Our ongoing mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life forms and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.
(to the MALL!!!)

Well, if you haven’t figured it out already, this is two ladies traveling, consequently shopping always gets in the way somehow haha. We can never get enough of it and one way or another we find a reason or excuse to go back into shops. Nancy says she’d use a much bigger coffee mug because the normal ones just don’t do the trick for her. Mom and Mela think AHA! We must go back to Dikelsbuhl and find one for her. And of course, while we’re there we can check the other stores we missed last time. I mean, it can’t hurt to roam around town, enjoy a cup of tea, a good meal and the German hospitality.

So we walked back to this small medieval town and found new corners to hang and admire the details we had not spotted before. We walked the smaller streets close to the other towers surrounding this fortress and we discovered small houses covered in ivy, head to toe so to speak. Among the tiny alleys we ran into shops you could barely notice behind wooden doors, stashed away from sight. We spent at least 15 minutes in each, discussing and comparing. Normally, I would not spend that much time looking at the many shiny facets of a ring, but I’m on vacation and my eyes are allowed to indulge in other things than the Times New Roman font of my Word spreadsheets at work (of course, there is the blog, but that doesn’t count hehe. This is always pleasure!).

Then we decided that for lunch we should try a new place. So many fancy restaurants, looking so appealing. We stop to check the menu and sure enough, it’s in German, so the prices are all we really understand. Yet, we are more interested in the feeling we get when we go inside. It has to feel… like us. Cozy and warm and fun. Eventually we go in (wait! I have to check the pictures we took to make sure I spell this right haha) the Blum Kleinen Dbristen (with an accent please!) and we are overwhelmed with how small the place is but how welcoming still. We get a table with a view to almost the entire saloon and my curious eye keeps checking the people around. I always do this without meaning to. I am just observant. There is an old couple in the corner having a really plentiful meal. He’s drinking bear and I can tell it’s all coming back through his nose and he chokes. Eventually he has to hit his chest a bit to ease the alcohol puffing back up his throat. His wife checks him out with a suspicious eye while enjoying her salad. Most women are serving salads while the men are wrestling a colossal chunk of pork in their plates.

Now you can see why we we found it hard to leave...
My plate ...
Mom's plate...
And the salad in between...
The S.T.R.UD.E.L...
And The Mela...
It's not only that I cannot read German but they have to use those hieroglyphs as well, that I can't even decipher letters anymore... 
My warrior/commander face haha
A couple next to us orders tea and Coke. That’s a strange combination. I had met the guy at the toilets earlier and he asked me in a perfect German if that was the way to the men’s room and I answered in a perfect German “Ya!” and smiled with my Romanian face. They’re both having some heavy stuff to eat. I switch to the menu before me and the pork actually looks really good. I slide my finger down the page and despite the killer combination of meat and fries (and possibly noodles too), the dishes do seem to be delicious so I am turning into a sinner and I want to battle pork in my own plate now. On the bottom of the page there is a dish called “The Spit of the Knight”. Now why would I eat the spit of a knight? But the damn thing gets my attention: pork medallions wrapped in grilled bacon, potato dumplings and salad to the side. Devilish!!!

But mom still thinks about it. She says “is there fish?” I say “hmmm, maybe.” I turn the page. I always ask for the menu in English of course. I don’t want to end up eating God knows what. We find the fish section. Now I have to say. I had an experience in Poiana Brasov one time, I think it was 2008. I was with my family at a restaurant there and we ordered fish without realizing that the price was different if the fish was bigger than a certain number of grams. So we ended up with a bill that turned the fish sour in our bellies. You don’t want to know. And as we say, after one such experience “vrei sa sufli si in iaurt” (you want to blow even in yogurt – you get it – yogurt is already cold, no need to blow to make it cooler haha). So I share my worries with mom. She laughs, but she remembers. So the lady comes in and I ask the stupid question: “Is the fish more expensive if it’s… bigger?” She looks at me and she doesn’t get it. Of course she doesn’t get it. I have to relate in a few words my previous fish-price drama and she nods, understanding. “No. Price stays the same.” Now she speaks my kind of language. “Well then get us this and this.”

And man, did they bring us fish or what. I’ll just add the pictures to see for yourselves. And while we still wonder at our own stuff, a young couple before us, all cuddly and cute until that point, get their food. Haha! The face on the guy was priceless. I don’t know if his knight spit more or something but they brought a whole friggin’ pork leg with a butcher’s knife stuck in it because there was nothing else that he could use from that table that would have cut through so much meat. His girlfriend laughs her heart out then takes the camera to capture the moment. He doesn’t even try to mask his astonishment. Mom and I are happy to have ordered fish now.

Lunch is over, but it’s so good in here. The chit chat of people and just a tiny bit of music somewhere in the air (not like in Romania where I have to shout at people next to me so we can hear each other). So we decide that – considering we haven’t sinned with the knight and all – we deserve desert. Oh, the cruelty of such choices! Caramelized apples and cream, banana split and fruit salads! We eventually want to go for a local delicatessen so we get an apple strudel each, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and cream. They add a slice of orange to it and two of apple and we die!!!! Savor savor savor!

We finish lunch but we spend another 20 minutes there, simply drinking (water!) ‘cause we’re so fond of the place by now. Finally, we go out and Nancy picks us up from outside town to join her and see Riddick. We spend some time with Haylee and Zoey watching her ride and we’re amazed with how beautiful and elegant Riddick is in his moves. It seems easy to ride him. I don’t understand what’s the snake kind of movement from waist down Nancy keeps doing, especially when he’s simply walking. I mean why can’t she just stand straight without her body curving this way? Eh… I went with Eileen at the stables a few times and she asked me to get on her horse. When I saw she used a ladder to get on top of him I said no way in hell I’m riding a 450 kg 5 feet tall jelly!!! Well, I guess that changed soon enough when in a few days I rode Riddick haha But that’s another story all together.
Mela and Zoey being really well behaved... the both of them haha
Oh, that is one of the cuttest most darlings things ever! Haylee and her friend attending to the "horse" haha
I mean look at them: a perfect match! And she was so detailed when taking care of him, brushing him, cleaning his hooves... adorable!!!!!


Ship log 9A5.20, 9 hundred hours 
(I have no clue what the heck I’m saying, but it sunds interesting! Haha)

Commander Mela together with First Officer Mom present on kitchen deck decide to assist Nancy in her morning duties with Riddick by relieving her of her children (that doesn’t sound right haha), namely we offer to take Haylee and Zoey for a walk with us, around the village and explore the unknown territory. 

Said and done.

We didn’t have to time travel or anything because we could walk the 1 km separating Hellenbach from Lohe, the next small village. Ok, that’s not a village. It’s a holiday camp for kids, holding a big play ground, a few houses and about 67 horses from what we found out later. And three are 3 really beautiful but mean ass dogs haha. We pass Lohe to find ourselves in the… wilderness.

Commander Mela takes the lead followed closely by Frist Officer Mom playing tag with Haylee. The fields are so vast they fade into the horizon, blending with the light blue skies and we marvel at the serenity before us. Horses everywhere and only the sounds of nature and Haylee’s laughter, echoing high and deep as we enter the woods. It’s a fairy tale story: the moss is so soft I literally sink my feet in it and I hop like a rabbit among the trees with Haylee imitating me and we both make perfect cartoon characters. White mushrooms grow among the roots of the tall trees, hidden in the shadows. Some strange forms of life seem to have crept their way in this normality and I’m trying to make out what they are. It looks like fungus or a lesser evolved species of mushroom – concludes Commander Mela asking for a second opinion from her First Officer. But she is busy enjoying the view herself.

Za creature...
The day before we had brought home one of those soap things bubble makers toys and Haylee has it with her. The contest begins who makes more and bigger balloons. Commander Mela proves her skills and makes the 5 years old run around to catch them or blow them high above us.

On our way back we make a pit stop to fuel Zoey with some cookies and juice when we spot an old stable with 3 ponies and a donkey walking about. Haylee immediately bonds with the animals despite my best recommendations and before you know it, we all indulge in the petting and sweet retard talk we always have with animals: “Da’ ma sa pupe mama un baiat frumos…” (Let momma kiss this little beauty…), “Ce e ma’ cu botul asta moale la tine, da’ sa te jecmanesc cu coama ta cu tot” (What’s with the soft muzzle, you little boy, let momma play with this crest of yours). Translations can’t really make it into showing just how funny we were in being idiots. Eventually we move away, but not before Haylee waves goodbye to her new friends.
First Officer conspiring into the rudimentary action of... petting! hahaha

The alien poneis and donkey....
After all, this is what our journeys are all about: to make new friends. Even if they are three ponies and a donkey! (Did you just smile?!?!)

Ship log 9B5.20, 3 hundred hours 
(that’s in the afternoon for those of you who are not familiar with military talk hahaha – somebody stop me!)

What? You think we were done shopping? There are no boundaries to space, therefore, shopping is limitless as well. I will not bore you with our endless back and forth among the small streets of Dinklsbuhl, searching and exploring and finally buying all sort of stuff. The thing is, we never really get things for ourselves. We find one or two things here and there that we really like; usually they only help us build memories: like a nice flower pot, a specially carved candle, an old and chipped mug, a beautifully painted plate to hang on the wall. But most of the time we like shopping for gifts to bring back to friends. It’s so much more fun and challenging to find the right ones: from magnets to old rings, from little angel statues to wooden sculpted cats, from antique books and colorful sawn butterflies to the local sweets, we always dwell more on getting those than we do to buy clothes or whatever for us. I can only hope that our friends like them and enjoy them at least as much as we’ve enjoyed shopping for them hehe.

Of course that when we were done we went to have dinner, the same place as before – ‘cause it was so good and this time we ended the day in style. Mom got venison goulash with walnut spretzel (I am sure I got this one wrong) and I had duck with potato dumplings and marmalade. Mom’s goulash happened to be just a bit too spicy for her taste, but that was alright, because they chose to deliver me with the fattest biggest duck in town so I gave her half of my portion and we both left the place stuffed. Literally. Because we also had the strudel again haha Yummy… That is one good thing I’ll never complain about nor have enough of. I’m not sure this is good English right now, but you get my point!

Yeah, that's a lot of food, right there!
This concludes our mission for Days 5 and 6, dated in ship log number – see above – a journey that had us venture into the unknown of the Deutschland, facing the undeniable peril of the cute and cuddly Ponies and Donkey. Puss in boots is next (that could easily be Camilo!). And then the strange, yet intriguing paths of… shopping.

We shall meet again soon to learn more about our last day in Hellenbach and… beyond.
Mission completed.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Germany. Day 3 and 4. Sheep Dance and Farming

Good something to everyone! I never know when I’m actually going to post this so I give up saying morning, afternoon or evening so, please chose an option that suits you when you read this.

Considering I am so far behind with this, I will do my best and be efficient by putting at least two days into one story. Today we are leaving Hellenbach and going to Munich to meet our dearest friends Bernie and Anca soooo… there’s more material and inspiration coming my way which of course, has to be told.

DAY 3.

On the 3rd day, which I believe was Monday (remembering days while on holiday is always problematic because well, I don’t have to keep an agenda so time flies by differently), Nancy invited us over to a local parade in a town nearby called Onolzheim (Nancy just spelled that for me ‘cause otherwise I would have called it Onza – she says that’s the accent in which the word is pronounced). The parade is called the Dance of the Sheep (male sheep that is). She gets two badges for mom and I to remember the event, but I give mine to Haylee because I’m busy with the photos anyway. The parade is not what we expected initially. It’s for the children, with cartoon themes and witches and snow, ducklings, sheep and ponies. We do have one that has as main theme Top Gun and everyone looks great in their pilot costumes. Especially the young lads haha.

Mom and her apple juice

Zoey and her favorite chair haha
The whole town gathers, including other people like us coming from the surrounding villages. The police stop traffic on the main road and there are even one or two ambulances, just in case. A few street vendors sell Coke, bear of course and a local drink, a mixture of mineral water and apple juice. Mom and I get two of those and Nancy gets a Coke. I get three chips so that when I’m done drinking I can take the empty bottles back and get 3 eur for them in return. Neat! Someone starts talking in the mic presenting the event and what’s coming and Nancy hurries to let us know what the man is speaking. Everyone laughs and applauds, I can even make out a few words by myself. The elders have brought chairs from home and sit in the sun on the sidewalks while the kiddies have brought little plastic bags that they use to sit on the side of the road. It’s like they have all come prepared for this.

And then the parade starts, a sheep, all garnished and decorated comes by followed by 13 couples walking in line and Nancy tells me that the sheep will be sacrificed at the end of the parade and before that it will choose one or more couple from this long line, to eat it. Freaky stuff. Or as we would say, the sheep is probably choosing them thinking “I hope I get stuck in your throat humans!” haha
There's the sheep

And the people who were supposed to eat him :((

Well, I better let the pictures speak for themselves, with just one small note: the really nice thing about the whole parade was that everyone threw candy for the kids and now I understood why they had brought the plastic bags. A fortune to carry home! Haylee filled her pockets to last her for a week! And Mela engorged on a few Coke lollypops and Haribo jellies… The photographer has to eat as well! Haha On the other hand, a funny thing – and I have to make another note here: I’ve spent so much time with Haylee, but especially with Zoey, preparing her drink, holding her, folding her in her seat that I am a little specialist in 1 year old babies now haha – so Nancy says “Mela, one of the guys in the parade checked you out thinking, what a hot momma!” ‘cause I was pulling the stroller – well, I hope that happens when I have kids for real haha.

The sexy momma haha

Pappa bear abd Mela: what a perfect pair!

When the parade was done, we went home and had late lunch. When the time came for Nancy to feed Riddick I offered to take him out for a walk. I did not know what I was getting myself into that is. Other than the fact that he is taller than me and weighs about 600 kg, there was not much of a problem haha. He is such a well behaved horse and so calm, but so strong! Every stop he makes is a struggle for me to make him move. And because I’m not used to walking to such a big fellow he almost dragged me across the woods and I was afraid to stop him so he doesn’t come to a halt abruptly and slide on the wet leaves. Eventually, Nancy comes to the rescue and teaches me how to maneuver him, but still after a 20 minutes walk I feel I have built more muscle into my right arm then a full week of weight lifting at the gym.

At the stables
Here is Mela walking Riddick in my own very retard way. Poor horsey!

DAY 4.

Day 4, for once was uneventful. It was one of those normal days when you just feel the need to do nothing, or something that requires a minimum effort. Something I don’t get to do every day anymore, unfortunately. Mom does it more often ‘cause she’s so much closer to my grandparents so her journeys to the country side help her to disconnect a bit more through the household and field work they always have going there. So, considering we are in a farmers’ community, we figured we should act like farmers for a little. More so, there was such a nice weather, not that cold and the backyard needed our help to be cleared from all the autumn leaves carpeting the grass.

We visited Riddick in the morning to serve him breakfast and then we spent some time over lunch and small chit chat in the kitchen. Coffee is always welcome especially when you add a little fresh milk taken straight from Nancy’s neighbor, Otto who owns a big farm with many cows. I always salute them through the big doors of the barn and some of them reply. I guess my cowish works; I learnt their language when I was a kid because my grandparents also had cows and I always took care of them every weekend and every vacation. That happened until I left for college and then my visits home were extremely rare, unfortunately.

So, we ask Nancy what’s the plan for the day and she says, of course, we can do whatever we need to do but she has to take care of the garden for a little. Mom and I glance at each other thinking HA! We will help! I don’t feel getting my ass in jeans today to roam free on the streets. It feels more like a leggings dirty boots kind of day today. Plus it’s so nice in the garden, perfect weather and other than walking, I haven’t really exercised in any way since I’ve been here. Well, I have exercised my stomach into fitting more food, that’s what I worked on!

So this is our chance to thrive in countryside fitness activities. We buckle up in our leisure clothes and get out there, with the tools in our hands, ready to make things happen. Nancy is not tally sure she wants us on this ride because she’s got serious matters to handle and we look like we’re about to hit the playground. But alas! Mom has already started swiping the yard before we could even go downstairs – with the wrong broom! Haha We then move on to the backyard and Haylee’s toys (a big kitchen, totally utilized with which she’d been cooking some delicious mud and sand cakes earlier in fall). I find two apple trees in the process and collect a box full of them and cannot help but indulge in the bare pleasure of eating fruit off the grass in the middle of the garden. Sooo good!

Nancy then shows me where I carry all the fallen leaves we’ve gathered: behind Otto’s stables because he will use it as fertilizer for his crops. It’s nice to see how they get along and how everything is somehow put to a better use in this place. They save pretty much everything that can be saved. Eventually I make about 100 trips back and forth and I always glimpse at the cows inside. Eventually Nancy, Otto and I cross path and she explains to him that I plan on visiting his cows haha He says they’re pretty shy but some of them could really use a pet so I’m up for it.

I love this!!! Plus it has a kitty in it which means double like!
Camillo - A lovable crazy cat! I'm not sure I'm spelling his name right

Finchen and her big wet nose!!!!

Taranul e pe camp, ura draguta mea, taranul e pe camp haha My farmer side. Kind of missed this, I used to help my grandparents a lot when I was yunger
Beautiful sunset from the back garden

We’re done just when the sun sets, to go inside and find Nancy in full swing, preparing a great dinner. We look like we’ve been working in a mine, at least I do. I have some dirt and leaves in my shoes and a bit of chocolate chip cookies from Zoey with whom I had played in the morning, smudged over my leggings. But it feels good. Plus we got some work done so that is motivating to wake up tomorrow to a new day.

Well, as you can see, not everything is about visiting and expensive things or holidays. Every year, depending on how difficult or exhausting it has been, we decide what kind of vacation we should have. If we feel like going crazy visiting something, always on the go, then we go for that. But this year we felt like taking a laid-back vacation, where we visited some but got some rest and some normal stuff into the schedule as well.

It’s incredible how many things you can still do without getting bored just sitting in one place. Plus we had lots of visiting yesterday when we got into Munch, so if in any way we missed it, we got plenty of it now. But more about Munich in the posts to come.

We are going back home today, but I will continue writing this so hopefully by the end of this week I will be done with the entire week. It would be a pity not to, we had such a great time and met and made such dear friends along the way. I know how bad I felt when I didn’t write about my week with Emily – which was absolutely gorgeous!!!! – and I had such a wonderful time. So I won’t miss on this one. I guess I have to be more organized. But it’s hard when you’re having fun hahah.

Yeah. Monday. Work again. Ahhhhhh!!! Lovely.
Are you ready??!! I AM NOT!

MUAH, still from Germany.
Mela and Mom