There are some days I feel like that flat tyre on the photo above.
I took it today, when I walked down the hill (notice the double meaning, haha) and saw that a rural neighbour, lets call him Onslow, had put a lot of ancient farming rubbish a few metres further from the spot he put it on last year.
"Picturesque", I mumbled - but then I am only a romantic city-plant...
I have been in Berlin for a wonderful week - though this time very much engaged to cultivate my friendships rather than hurrying from one cultural event to another.
No, we hurried from one restaurant to another - and if you fear now that Yours Truly might have become
fat more portly (I saw that the publishers of Roald Dahl picked out anything that might aggrieve somebody - and am still discussing what I think about that within myself) by so many meals, I can reassure you: NO WAY!
This (nothing eaten till after taking the foto) is the meal that our famous vegetarian Chinese served me - not Business Lunch (which is always cheaper) but a regular serving at a quite horrendous price.
New was: only two-third of the normal portion (ah, the price of gas!).
New was: "We have to charge 2 Euro extra, if you want rice to your meal."
New was: I - and that is really new, because I am a person of small portions - I was still hungry when I had finished the mix of onions & paprika & a few chilis (which I did not eat), a few nuts and a minimalist copy of two vegetarian chicken-chunks.
I translated a huge English cookbook for a German publisher and I can cook and I can do arithmetics and know the price of these few ingredients, and how long you have to stir them in the wok (can't be the price of gas, noway!). Chop, chop - that's what I will do with that restaurant...
As to the flat tyre above: you know that normally I am quite active.
But after a few days of sunshine and hope and Lebenslust it became very cold again, look at this gloomy landscape today:
But I went out for a long walk - whether I wanted or not. (I didn't, but my internal Slavedriver painted pictures of decline and immobility).
That gets me going. Always. On Autopilot.
The weather has been uncertain this year. We live in interesting times.ReplyDelete
Dear Emma, yes, March behaves a bit like April... Sunshine, snow, of everything a bit. The good thing: in Bavaria I see a changing vast sky - in Berlin sometimes a yellow-grey sky lies from November till March over the city.Delete
I would like your internal slave driver too, at least for the 5 week days. If I have images of decline, they flash in and out so quickly, my normal thinking is hardly disturbed.ReplyDelete
Dear Helen, yes, though the internal slave driver sometimes is annoying, it also is useful. I found out that most often the best way is NOT to discuss with it but just do it - that's why I wrote autopilot - though here I mean the routine things like a long brisk walk which I do almost every day.Delete
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I didn't want to go for a walk in the cold today, either, but, yet, the alternative is too awful to contemplate.ReplyDelete
True, dear Tasker. And I found out that I am quite satisfied to have done it: I always discover something new in the landscape (yesterday I saw three storks), and then I am content with myself. I often think of you, Tasker, and wish you the best!Delete
There's a lot going on this post. I can't tackle it all so maybe won't tackle any of it except that going for the walk was good discipline.ReplyDelete
You could have picked one item from the menu, dear Rachel - evidently I forgot to reduce the blog-meal of a third! :-)Delete
And yes: moving is one of the best mood-enhancers I know.
I walk almost daily, ice excepted. I often feel very reluctant but I'm always glad I did. I hope it helped your spirits, too.ReplyDelete
Dear Boud, great! I do that too (though not when there is ice or storm) and try to alternate: one day a long brisk walk, the other day weights in the fitness center. I once read that this mixture is good for body and brain - though walking, I think, is best for the soul. And yes: it helped.Delete
It is definitely harder to enjoy the outdoors when it is cold and/or damp. You did well to get out for a walk. Think Spring! Soon we'll enjoy mild sunny days and take pleasure seeing the Spring flowers emerge. The prices of a restaurant meal are outrageously high everywhere. Prices are up and portion size is down. On occasion, I eat out and usually need a light lunch before bedtime.ReplyDelete
Dear Susan, yesterday the spring flowers like crocuses, snow drops, adonis and first violets all crouched under their leaves, if they could they curled up and hid their little heads.Delete
We had some beautiful Spring days the week before, that made it so hard, I think: I thought winter (which I normally like) was over. But it isn't - it is still very inconstant weather. Well: I could just call it March :-)
Yes, restaurants prices (well, those of groceries and everything else) are going through the roof. I start to compare the prices, quality and the kilogram price, which they mandatory have to write under the price above, and it often helps comparing, and sometimes "unmasks" a seemingly bargain offer.
My sister and I had a long talk tonight about the price of groceries. We decided everything starts at five dollars. Loaf of bread, $5. Half pound of butter, $5. Jar of jam, $5. A dozen eggs, $5. Etc,etc,etc.ReplyDelete
Dear Joanne, bread, milk, butter, cheese, meat - all of them got very expensive now, and that hurts especially the ones who have small incomes. Families with many children, pensioners.Delete
I am reminded of times when I was very young and most people had to buy what season gave them -. no paprika or tomatoes in winter, not meat every day. My mother was a good cook, and could count, but I remember that we only occasionally - and for a special occasion - visited a restaurant.
As to prices going up: I am especially annoyed when I see that they boldly put a new price tag over the old (cheaper) one: it can't have been the gas price in that case.. only sheer greed.
Decline & fall? Never, dear Britta! A sociable trip to Berlin sounds delightful, despite the sticker shock of your restaurant. Anyway, voting with your feet is a fond pastime for Mr P & I. The "less for more" phenomenon is commonplace here these day, too, and leads to opportunities to try other places and, at an optimistic pinch, is effective for shaking things up a bit. Who hasn't been guilty of grumbling about places "going to the dogs" and yet showing up again as if nothing could be further? It only leads to more grumbling, hahah!ReplyDelete
ps: Commiserations over having Onslow as your neighbour!!
Dear Pip, thank you - well, it was the return of That Cold Outside, that triggered my despair.ReplyDelete
Berlin has about 13.000 registered restaurants and pubs - there might be hope to find some other ones :-) (and one of the very best, is still wonderful and just around the corner!, of course you have to book long in advance)
I am very happy to tell you that Onslow is a so far away neighbour that I can see him as picturesque and not as an eyesore.
I have to walk half the way down the hill (so I cannot see the pond of despair from the kitchen window or any other window) but can estimate the antique farmers' remains that lay around as early witnesses of antediluvian pre-industrialism.
Very striking as the rest of the village is outstandingly clean and neat, which is unsettling too in another way. They all get their electricity send especially cleaned & first, as dear Hyacinth so rightly demands from the electricity board.