Stories of this Canadian girl's adventures exploring Europe & beyond...join me!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

the seventh day

And on the seventh day he rested. It’s January 7th. A week ago great guy and I rang in the New Year in snow! Lots and lots of beautiful, falling snow. We were in Tirol, the Austrian Alps, for a few days of skiing with great guy’s great friend, his girlfriend and their 13 month-old baby…das baby Ella.

It was wonderful to be in the tiny, mountain town of Nesslewängle (population: 432) looking out over a valley of snow. Atop the ski hills, nestled in quaint, rustic and so comfortable, ski huts we enjoyed authentic Austrian down-home cooking; such as Kaiserschmarm (thin, egg pancakes with apple sauce and powdered sugar), Bergspätzle (hefty egg noodles with bacon and onion), and world-reknowned (according to them) Apfelstrüdel.

Of course no skiing is really skiing without après-skiing, and there is no better place to enjoy hot chocolate with a dash of rum then in a European berghütte (mountain hut…but more like a chalet). I love the atmosphere…the sounds of schmaltzy, schlager music which everybody sings along to (even the teenies who pretend to hate the cheesy songs just so happen to know every single word), the smells of burning wood in the big fireplaces admidst great cooking, and the sights of tired, happy skiers amongst candlelit, wooden tables. All fun.

Das baby was such a good sport…chaulk that up to chill parents who schlep her along everywhere so that she is used to all types of places (snow, snow, snow on the top of a ski hill), all types of transportation (the gondola going up, going down, going up again), and all types of noise (fireworks shooting off around her at 12:02 New Years Eve). She had fun. We had fun. Even great guy was won over by her. Cats and babies always pay the most attention to the person who seems the most uninterested in them…and little Ella didn’t let great guy get away with that. She took her little spoon and pointed it at great guy’s soup, opening her mouth wide – he had no choice, he had to feed her! Super cute.

Since getting back home and acclimatizing to the fact that it’s already 2012, great guy has been busy with a bagger. Sorry, I think that word is so funny. Bagger is a hoe in English…which, come to think of it is also a funny word. Anyways, he has been baggering up the entire area outside our front door, almost to the riverbank. He is designing, improving and re-shaping our driving, parking and walking areas, and creating a monumental mess. We have been pulling up sidewalk plates and creating flower beds, all while it has been raining and raining. The end result is mud. Being covered in mud from head to toe. And, of course it just keeps raining. But, great guy sure is having fun, like every little boy with a very big toy!

And, last night we invited the haus folks (the tenants) over for a drink. Rock’n roller and jülchen, best friend and us, sitting around the table, drinking, eating and catching up. I don’t think this has ever happened before, and it proved to be a really nice evening…everyone hanging out till after midnight, and I didn’t even have to break out a board game. Even rock’n roller was on his best behaviour!

On the eighth day great guy will be baggering still and I will be on a train to Berlin for a week of training, for a new job which I will be starting later in the year. Life isn’t boring, here on the Rhein.

Happy new year, my friends…may this year bring you enough challenging things to make you stretch and grow, good health, much love, and great friends.

And, a note to my regular (and irregular) readers, thank you so much for your support and interest in my blog. Your words of encouragement, and the fact that you are reading have inspired me and touched me this year. I will now be uploading a new post regularly every Wednesday. If you have suggestions or comments or anything you would like to hear more about, please let me know! Viele liebe Grüsse, Nina

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