Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Gratitude

©Brigitta Huegel

Dear You, 
I thought for a while before chosing this photo to illustrate "gratitude".
It shows that being grateful is like being a mirror: you notice what is around you, you reflect it - and don't take it just for granted. (Well - the image is a bit wobbly...)
Which we often do instead of being thankful.
When we feel down we sometimes narrow our vision and become unfair: we see only the half-empty glass, only 'poor-little-me'.
Actually I wanted to show here a video with the song of Ralph Mctell, "Streets of London" - but both versions on youtube were - so I think - exploiting and preying on private misfortune, so I choose another video instead, which even as a child I thought of as "pure envy" - the contrary of gratefulness: Peter Sarstedt's song "Where Do You Go To (My Lovely)?" Our 'captain' on the narrowboat on the Leeds-Liverpool-Canal, Matti, a musician, could perform it very well - the highlight was the little bitter laugh - ahahaha - in between. But hear yourself - what is the singer accusing the girl of? That she got what they both(!) aimed for - "with burning ambition"?
I hate it when people claim "I can look into your head" - (though nowadays, with all those people shouting their thoughts into their cellphone, we almost can - for a moment).



Back to gratitude: yes,  I write (almost every day) into a Gratitude Journal. I do it in the morning (being a morning person) and recall the blessings of the day before. At least five items.
I always find more.
Sometimes very trivial things - "first little violet opened her eyes - thanks she survived the hard winter!" (I am on good footing with it - so I am allowed to say "her") - or very important things.
The small things predominate - but that is just the trick, the charm: by being able to see that so much beauty and good surrounds you in everyday life one recognises that one must be a very dull person not to notice it.
A French proverb says:
                                          "Gratitude is the heart's memory." 
                                                                                                         So it is.


Tuesday, 12 January 2016

A Toothless Tiger In My Cabinet

©Brigitta Huegel

This morning I read Gwil's poem "That Fruit May Grow Upon Your Trees" on http://poet-in-residence.blogspot.de/. So I took a photo of the little Kumquat on my windowsill - I admire its strength: 10 bulging little fruits, and still 9 to come. 
In the warmer season it is on the balcony - otherwise you might be overpowered by the scent of neroli. 
This morning I woke up incredibly late (for my schedule): 8 o'clock - can't remember that in the last ten years I ever managed to wake up that late. 
And what did I do with my exuberant energy? 
I polished the old silver fruit basket, the silver candle holder (five arms), and a beautiful little blue enamel bowl on a silver foot. 
Ah, and not to forget the little Lady Pistol from the French armourer 'Le Page à Paris' (official armourer of the Dukes of Orléans)  - founded at the beginning of the 18th century.
Don't fear,  I used up my energy in polishing - and: it has a pyrite lock (a bit broken), the cock is artfully recessed into the walnut and ebony wood and needs a whole lock to come out. 
It is just a very beautiful useless antique - and that is good, as I love peace.  
And oranges. 
(...that come all the way from China...)




Sunday, 10 January 2016

What to Do With Heaps of Diaries?

Dear You, 
I started diary writing when I was almost twelve years old. I wrote a lot, and draw for a long time: family life, friends, and school were important (the drawings a bit pale): 


©Brigitta Huegel

Here you see me with my (then) best friend Atie:

©Brigitta Huegel

and little misfortunes as The Curious Incident of the Dog, who mistook our sledge for a tree were described meticulously in word and picture:

©Brigitta Huegel

Atie and I wanted to stay together for all our life, thus I, then 13, was willing to marry her brother, so we would be relatives, Michael was five years older than I and allowed to drive the Merc of his father - here you see an interested young man with a tall, but very young girl:

©Brigitta Huegel

Sorry to say that my family did a lot to sabotage my plans. Long walking tours (with my little sister),

©Brigitta Huegel



Lots of sport:

©Brigitta Huegel

©Brigitta Huegel

©Brigitta Huegel


And then Atie's father was called to Karlsruhe to become a Federal Public Prosecutor, so we wrote each other volumes of letters (with drawings, of course).
I wrote (almost) all my life. So: the question is what to do with all those diaries? Of course I will keep the childhood diaries - and the many ones that I wrote (with lots of quotations) during the time when our son lived at home.
But the others? Even now I still write. And as you see: I have always the intention to "Make it short!", but...  By now there are over 150 diaries. I will think quite a while what I will do with them.
I still remember that I was utterly downcast when my family told me that my great grandmother Anne-Marie von Kroge had written some diaries and that one had fulfilled her last will and put them with her into her coffin. (In my case I would need a mausoleum...)

©Brigitta Huegel



Friday, 8 January 2016

As I promised, Rachel



©Brigitta Huegel

A few days ago I told Rachel, who had published some of her drawings on a wall of her house that it reminded me of a wallpaper I had seen in Kensington Palace.
I had to look through some photos... (glad: the visual brain still works - I took the photograph in 2013 - thought: I do a lot to avoid learning Italian -just kidding, will start in a few minutes, diligently).
This part I absolutely love:


©Brigitta Huegel



Wednesday, 6 January 2016

The Brand New Testament

©Brigitta Huegel

Dear You, 
I started this year with fine resolutions, and so I packed many, many photos (2011 - 2014) onto a HDD - to make my computer run quicker. Well - and now I would have to search for a while to find a picture of the "Zoo-Palast" as illustration for 'cinema'. ..
Berlin is snowed in - or do you say: under?  We have two-figure minus Celsius degrees - together with what the BILD-Zeitung (the German equivalent of the SUN) calls "the Russian whip" - ice-cold wind, that makes us all grab our scarves after 10 minutes walk and put them in front of our faces - water running from our eyes... One feels a deep desire to hibernate. And on the radio they tell people who live in villages outside to start two (2!!) hours earlier to get here...
Why I go outside at all?
Well, I had a beautiful birthday present: a cinema card that allows me to visit 12 cinemas (some of them with 4 different cinema halls - and very good films) as often as I want for a whole year!
Yours Truly is in Heaven!
(Guess what I saw today?) 



Sunday, 3 January 2016

Are You With Me? Always On My Mind...

You might know this song "Are You With Me?" from the 'Lost Frequencies' - and then you might wish you didn't - in it there is a simple little sound sequence with a catchy tone that won't leave you for days...
Why I ask?
Well, I think of you, my dear bloggers, 'Wherever you go, whatever you do'.
So while visiting Schloss Neuschwanstein.
When we walked I thought instantly of Joanne Noragon.
Look!


"A Birdhouse for Winter Bird Feeding" - with "voltage LED" - www.schreinerei-mair-pfronten.com    
And the advertising text ends with some well-known words:
                                      "yes we can! - build your dreams! 




Saturday, 2 January 2016

Royal Christmas / Königliche Weihnachten

©Brigitta Huegel
Dear You, 
this was the view from our hotel room at the Hopfensee (Allgäu), where we spent Christmas. A very new experience for me, not to celebrate at home - but you drive 8 hours and a half by train - we didn't want to ask that from our 'children', who live in Kempten now, and have to work on Monday again.
It was utterly beautiful - sun as in May.
On the trip to the Hopfensee I thought for a moment that I was in the wrong film: a red little train passed us, coming from Füssen - and it was filled up to the last place with dark-haired young Asians. Japanese mostly, but also Chinese.
I wondered. Then, of course, the penny dropped.
Allgäu - Füssen - der Kini - König Ludwig II. - and: Schloß Neuschwanstein.

©Brigitta Huegel



Which we saw for the very first time. To understand its bizzare architecture one look at the face of Ludwig might help:



Pfiat di! 
Britta  xxx