Britta's Letters from her life divided between city-life in German's capital Berlin and life in a Bavarian village

Thursday 19 September 2013

Lewis Carroll's remark on My Luggage

When I told our son what I have packed into the two suitcases for the houseboat-trip, he sent me this (from Lewis Carrol: The Hunting of the Snark).

Saturday 14 September 2013

The Tao of Wishes

Brigitta Huegel

One of the books my dearest English friend, Stephen Russell, The Barefoot Doctor, has written is called: 'Manifesto. How to get what you want without trying.
Had I but thought about it a bit longer! 
But no - carelessly I told Husband that I would appreciate to live on a houseboat. Very much. (I had seen some nice exemplars like that above on the Spree). 
"You?", asked Husband. "On a boat? Living on a damp, narrow, moving boat?
I felt piqued. Said: "Pshaw - I have many undiscovered facets you don't know!"  
The Tao listened. And laughed. 
And so a few days ago I got a surprising offer. 
A friend - and friends of him - will make a trip on a narrowboat from Bradford-on-Avon to Bath, direction Bristol, and back again. 
From the "(2 x) Three Men in a Boat" two had resigned - so Husband and I were asked. He, deep in writing an essay on "Luxury", has no time - but I..? 
For a second I hesitated. Then, without batting an eyelid I stared into Husband's eyes (did I imagine that I saw deep laughter in them?) "Of course I go", I said. "Such a big chance!
Which it is. I hope that the weather will be fine. 
But not being THAT starry-eyed anymore, I bought a dream-shiny-fuchsia Max Mara-down-vest - beautiful,slim and snuggly warm under my Burberry-Jacket. Then I rummaged through my winter wardrobe and pulled out the long black woolen-silk wool-pants with frills around the ankle. 
Yes! I know chapter 3 of Tove Jansson's 'Comet in Moominland' by heart, headline:  'Which is how to manage crocodiles' .  
So: come what may: Be prepared! 

P.S. For those who don't  know Tove's book (which is a fault!): Moomin's mother unnerves the young adventurers before their trip to take wool-pants with them (that's how mothers are) - and later, when they have to fight off crocodiles in a water tunnel they throw the heavy wool-pants into the wide open claws of the crocodiles. Saved! 

Sunday 8 September 2013

Autumnal joys

To show you that I am a very practical person too! (The wasps already know it).
And I have a big (travel) surprise in store (well: for me it was). Will tell you soon.

I COULD have given this little post also the enticing title: "How to stay young" (together with the so-called plum-cake-diet it would assure me approximately 10.000 clicks on this blog :-)
See: I found a very simple way to stay young: forgetfulness. Without any doubt in my heart I honestly wrote in the post about 'Kitchen gardens and Dig for Victory gardens' that son was five years old when I wrote that post. That's true. Then I added: "I wrote this essay 14 years ago".
And I believed it when writing that, thinking: "14 years ago? Time flies!"
Next morning I had a strange feeling... 14 years ago? But - oh -- then son would be 19 years old now. But he isn't.
He is 29 by now.
Well: what is a decade for a woman like me? I will remember most of it - but forget to add it mechanically to my age... Give me the wonder-cake, please!

The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time

Just got the wonderful email from Gay that she plays in this production in the Apollo Theatre in London's West End. The play is based on the novel by Mark Haddon.
I am so glad, and as shared joy is double joy I recommend it to those of you who are in or near London - I'm sure it will be worthwhile!

Friday 6 September 2013

My ÜberIch (Superego)

Brigitta Huegel

This morning I was roused from sleep two times: first by our neighbour above (to be exact: 3.80m above me, yes, our ceilings are high - and yes: our floors are all parquet which makes a jolly sound when you buy yourself new shoes, as he seemingly did, and then hustle and bustle through the wide rooms - at 5 o'clock in the morning!!! Main destination, so it seemed: the corner above my bed). 
The second time - it was now 7 o'clock, very late for me, but I had to catch up on some sleep (see above) it was my strong ÜberIch that whispered into my ear. 
To be more exact: it gave me a lecture. 
"What were you thinking of when you wrote that last post in 'Gardening in High Heels'?" "Häh?" "Don't say 'häh' - a groomed German Lady says 'Wie bitte'?" "What??" 
My ÜberIch took a seat at my desk and changed its contours to look like my beloved German/English - teacher Frl. Dr. Mergel (you know her by now). 
"If you had given me that as an essay, I would have written "Beside the point!" under it - in red ink.
I rubbed my eyes. 
"Under the admittedly quite catching headline "Kitchen gardens and Dig forVictory gardens" - what do you think people will expect?" "Ehm... äh..." "Don't mumble - speak clearly!" "Well, I would think I get some information on kitchen and victory gardens." "Bravo! But what did you serve? Eh?" "I...äh...I..." "Don't stutter. You served a - to stranger's completely uninteresting little story - about what your 5-year old son said - instead of facts, quotes, thoughtfulness." "Sorry!" "Yes, you can say that. If you weren't adult (hahaha) now, I would give you an hour's detention." "Ouch"
We made a deal - because I wanted to have breakfast, and she wanted - I don't know... Hopefully go one storey up and teach our stamping neighbour a lesson - in form of his old  teacher. 
The deal is: I inform myself on Victory gardens. And tell you - as soon as I find time. 
"I heard you", she said ,while her wonderful cherry-red ladies costume and then her figure and face dissolved, "I heard you humming under your breath!" 
And then she sang. 
In French this time:

(...Mais le soleil se fit taquin
Me cribla de carton d'éculaire
Et fit lancer sur mon bouquin
Des lutins à barbe séculaire
Géométrie rassurez-vous
Je serai fin prêt pour septembre
Mais à tout choisir je vous l'avoue
Mieux vaut le sable que la chambre

Yes - she knows my tricks by now, though I never played truant - maybe that's why she is called ÜberIch.