Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin
Showing posts with label Marigolds. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Marigolds. Show all posts

Thursday, 12 June 2014

A German Hausfrau Unter den Linden

Britta Huegel

Dear You,
these days, when I leave our house I'm instantly wrapped in the sweetest honey-est scent of flowering limetrees. Berlin has thousands upon thousands of them, it is the greenest city of Germany. So the air is filled with a very special and seductive delectation.
You  -  just - melt - away. Dizzy. Almost drunk. 
(Some poor bumblebees even die - they lie on the pavement, having looked too deep into the Mass full of nectar - plastered first, then on the Stairway to Heaven. Too late to become a teetotaller!)
Two years ago I published a poem on my blog "Britta's Happiness of the Day", written by Walther von der Vogelweide, our poet from the High Middle Ages (that most Germans would not understand anymore). "Under der linden" is so beautiful, and maybe I will do a translation of my own in the next days, because I am not utterly happy with the one I quote there.
You might know Berlin's famous boulevard "Unter den Linden" - though at the moment you would see more construction areas than limes (they build the new underground 55 - a silly project, only 1,8km long. I don't believe that chancellor Merkel or any MP will use that underground from Hauptbahnhof to the Brandenburger Tor -- and no back-bencher will do that either: they all are chauffeured around in their huge limousines while preaching ecology of environment to us, their beloved voters. It is not social envy that makes me angry - as you all know I love beautiful and racy cars - it is the hypocrisy to speak of ecology and then sit in an official car as that of our mayor's, a 435 PS strong gasoline-engined car, which needs 9,2 liter on 100 kilometers on average - with 216 gram Co2-emission per kilometer.
For the U55 they chopped a lot of old limetrees, which will be replaced in time. They promised. So we can feel reassured.
Yesterday I had to do a lot of car-cleaning: Knut, my little red Fiat 500, had been parked for 2 weeks under a lime tree - first the weather was too hot to use a car, then I was in Munich. And now: horror!
You see: the leaves of the limetrees look like being lacquered, and when you walk under them, you think: What? Is it raining in a fine spray?
It isn't. There are zillions of aphids... sprinkling everything underneath with a sugary sticky film - I couldn't look Knut into his eyes! So I put on my Marigolds and took a bottle of Windolene and freed the sight, his and mine.
I have a dashy photo where I stand on a high ladder - in Marigolds, with an apron and a feather duster (oh, I almost forgot the little black dress, smiley, smiley!) - the incarnation of what men think a Hausfrau should look like. It was actually made for (the German issue of) Men's Health, for which I sometimes answer household questions.
Thought I show you the beautiful limetree photo instead.