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…

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