Monthly Archives: April 2015

Weekend of blossom festivals

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This weekend we visited the Baumblütenfest in Werder an der Havel (www.obstbauverein-werder.de/baumbluetenfest.htm) and the Kirschblütenfest-Hanami in Teltow /Berlin-Lichterfelde (http://www.teltow.de/veranstaltung/kirschbluetenfest.html). Hanami (“flower viewing”) is “the Japanese custom of enjoying the transient beauty of flowers” (as Wikipedia poetically puts it), often the blossoms of the cherry tree (sakura), or sometimes the plum tree “ume”. Continue reading

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Relaxing weekend in the Czech countryside and a visit to Hrad Kunětická Hora

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Kunětická Hora castle

Recently I posted about the new kinds of over-the-counter medications I’d discovered in Germany compared to South Africa (mostly herbal). At the time I was busy optimistically trying them all out since I had a bad cough. Sadly, none of them seemed to help, although the good strong ginger, lemon and honey tea that J kept making me definitely soothed the cough. The terrible, choking cough was just going away when I caught another bad cold just before the Easter weekend. We’d already booked tickets to Vienna, from which we would drive to Slovenia, and nothing was refundable so we went anyway.

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Spring in Berlin

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A German once told me: “They say you can call yourself a Berliner when you have survived seven winters in Berlin.”

So far I have survived three. The first one was the darkest, coldest and snowiest of the three. I just assumed it was always like that, and since the snow was a novelty, it didn’t bother me. But by the time it came to Easter and it was still snowing, I was wishing for spring along with everybody else. Continue reading

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Mein Fahrrad (My Bicycle) – a love-hate relationship

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On the Oder-Neisse cycle trail

When they predicted wind for Berlin yesterday and today, I have to admit I pooh-poohed it. Bear in mind that I come, after all, from the Cape of Storms. Winds that people exclaim about here are often not more than your average daily south-easter in spring or summer in Cape Town. But this time, I was wrong. Both yesterday and today I returned to my bike after work to find it and others splayed in all directions, knocked over by the force of the gale. Continue reading

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