The Long week-end

Last year, my mom had a recorded phone message that went to the tune of “It’s summer, and the living is easy”. Well, it isn’t quite summer yet, but this week-end of sunshine and 23ish weather is making life quite easy.  And, a long week-end to boot (Pfingsten).  It doesn’t get much better. Oh, I’m sitting outside right now writing this with a glass of wine.  I guess it can get better! Aside from this cow that keeps belting out a “MooooooOOOOO!”  every few minutes since Friday night, it’s all good.

Friday night was a real treat, as the neighbours on both sides headed elsewhere.  We all have a clear path of view into each other’s backyards, giving little to no privacy so when they are gone, we really feel relaxed.  Not that they impose on us; in fact, they will only say hello if eye contact is made and not try to engage us in conversation.  When I did Yoga on Mother’s day, I made sure to politely do my downward facing dog pose with my arse faced toward the back hedge.

Both today (Sunday) and Monday are part of the Pfingsten (Pentecost) and are considered public holidays.  As shops and grocery stores are generally closed Sundays anyway in Germany, there is not a big difference except instead of shopping for one extra day of food; we had to shop for two.  Not a tough task to ask of for a bunch of foodies.  While hubby did the gathering of food at the market yesterday, I got the house clean and then spent the afternoon at an outdoor playground with little T.  Later we treated ourselves to dinner at our favourite bistro in the village we use to live in, on the patio (against the demands of Little T who prefers to dine inside.  Sorry, kid.  You don’t make ALL the rules). 

This morning we had a gift of spending three hours with our daughter and her boyfriend, who had a 4 hour layover in Düsseldorf en route to a cruise departing from Rome.  Walking the streets in Düsseldorf before 8am on a holiday Sunday was an unexpected delight, as hardly a soul was around!  Evidence of broken bottles suggests that many of the locals had only recently retired to slumber.  Being an anti-crowd person, it was such a treat to see the city so quiet.  Luckily we found a restaurant open and were able to enjoy a proper German-style breakfast with cheese, meat and fresh bread.

In the afternoon we enjoyed a long walk in the forest overlooking a lake, while little T cycled.  And now, we are enjoying the quietness of our backyard.  I love that this country takes Sundays and Holiday Mondays seriously as days they should be for – rest and enjoyment.  On a Sunday or Holiday you will find people here out walking, cycling, spending time with family or smiling alone.  They sit in cafés and just sit.   Since Germany still enforces quiet time (Ruhezeit) you aren’t allowed to make excessive noise on Sundays or Holidays, so no lawnmowers or vacuuming.  The result?  An uninterrupted silence that is extremely beneficial to the soul.

Minus one annoying cow.

7 thoughts on “The Long week-end

  1. Hi Heather,
    As usual, I enjoyed your observations. I like the idea of having a quiet time. At home here, it never fails that you have company or decide to enjoy your deck by yourself and one of the neighbors starts cutting their lawn.
    I think vacuuming should be banned in general since it hurts my back. I’m sure in the future there will be a system that picks up all the dirt and disposes of it.
    Enjoy your holiday weekend.


    • You know, the most relaxed I saw of Carl was sitting outside on our terrace (after of course, cleaning out our basement and trimming all the hedges!). Second thought, he can also be really relaxed camping. Just don’t camp on your driveway, OK?!


  2. Loved your description of the holiday Heather. It brought back so many wonderful memories of the time we spent in Aachen with you! I really miss those German breakfasts with buns fresh from the bakery (in fact all the delicious meals we enjoyed ) as well as the walks in the woods and the relaxed times we shared. I’m glad you are sooo enjoying a wonderful life with so many new experiences and opportunities.
    Cheers, J


    • Ahhhh, thanks Jean! Hard to believe it was a year ago that you and Cliff (and mom and dad) were here. We recently watched a video of Little Ts birthday supper we shared, with those lovely noisemakers before the cake. What fun! He is going to be 6 years old next week, and starts school in a few months. But, he still says “you’re a baby!”


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