Time travel

IMG_3980We spent a couple of days in the countryside in a cottage belonging to Vera’s family. I would ask you to temporarily step aside from reality and Imagine if you will a film from the sixties. Perhaps a Bond movie. Other films from this era no doubt exist, but we shall for the time being ignore them. Connery, naturally, wakes up in some house somewhere, presumably in the arms of some stunning female with an improbably erotic name. The idea may be hinted at that sex was recently undertaken. The house he would wake up in would be quite amazing, and incredibly sixties looking. I am going somewhere with this I promise. Here we are.

The cottage we stayed in was incredibly sixties looking. The parallels with a fantasy Bond lifestyle do not continue beyond this, I was getting away with myself. Still any time my life even hints at slightly resembling a Bond movie is a time for celebration and joy.

The cottage, as described, is stuck in a sixties time warp.. It’s possible that it comes from a time before this, I’m not entirely au fait with German fashion from the fifties and forties, but let us assume for now it is sixties or less. (My quality editor informs me it was built in 1959.) The garage houses countless sleds, skis and ski poles, constructed from wood. A time bIMG_3955efore carbon fibre my friends. The furniture may in fact have grown here, lovingly hewn by German furniture makers. Perhaps I could use the word whittled. The kitchen sink is in that style of large square porcelain that has become fashionable and expensive to have now, but is clearly just how it was back then.

There is a rather spectacular view across the forests from the balcony, and looking into the distance, one can see the largest radio telescope in Europe pointing into the skies. There are tremendous sunsets. Apparently. It was cloudy in the evenings when we were there. The sun peeked fiercely through the clouds as a swollen red sliver, hinting that it could be incredible if it so wished. It did not.

All in all, it’s worth waxing lyrical about for a while. Forgive the waxing if you will. Imagine that slippers were donned, chardonnay was supped and a jumper with some horrific pattern was worn, all the while sitting under the horns of an antlered skull, ruminating in front of a fire about the tragic lack of a pipe, and you should be just about there. Panting basset hounds are available to your scene if you so wish.

We went for a walk in the forest. Slightly before entering the forest, just as I was getting all excited by the idea of a walk, a veritable expotition of the sort that Pooh would be proud of, I was informed that we probably shouldn’t make too much noise, what with the wild boars and all. Porcine death awaited us. A friend of mine was trapped up a tree by a wild boar whilst lost in the Blue Mountains of Australia once, so I was aware of the danger these beasts could pose. However, my guide didn’t seem overly concerned, so we pressed on.

During the walk we passed a number of holes in the ground, which looked to the uninitiated eye largely like holes in the ground. They were in fact created by shelling during the war, a reminder that this area saw a lot of wartime action. The remains of a bunker where Hitler resided during the earlier, rather more promising stages of the war, was pointed out. A path we crossed was in fact a former aircraft landing strip. Reminders everywhere, even sixty five years on, of the history surrounding us. Sobering stuff.

My quality editor hastens to point out that the cottage, being built in 1959, was a time well after the war, and Hitler was not a regular guest popping over for tea and crumpets. In case that impression was given.

We also took a walk down into the town of Bad Munstereiffel. It was one ofIMG_4038 those sunny days that you hope for from summer, that you seem to recall happening in your childhood, those happier days when life was simpler, but are mysteriously absent from our present reality. The smell of mown grass literally ladened the air, almost granting it a personality. The town was famously old, the streets were lined with antiquated buildings and accompanying cafes, and as it was a public holiday, many people were partaking in the goods on offer. Suffice to say I took a lot of photos, and boggled a lot at how pretty everything was. We wandered around the town walls, and over the cobbled streets, before returning to the cottage up a fairly steep incline for luncheon on the veranda over a glass of white wine. Summer, as she arrives, is feeling pretty good thus far.

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