A perfect Sunday

September 26, 2011

Pretty picturesque, oder?

Admittedly, we're so settled into German life, it's hard to find us anywhere other than on the couch in our PJs, watching movies on a given Sunday (you know, day of rest, everything is closed, etc, etc). But between this Sunday's gorgeous weather and our awesome fieldtrip to IAA (Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung - a more in-depth post on that to come) the day before, we were inspired to get out of the apartment and really enjoy the day.

The parrots were apparently visiting from the parks at Schloss Biebrich, albeit pretty camouflaged

We ended up spending a good bit of time in Nerotal park, as the weather was that beautiful, sunny, warm-but-not-too-hot perfection that was begging to basked in. Bailey was also long overdue for some serious outdoor-frolicking activity.

Running, running, running...

The very splashy ducks had Bailey poised for action 
- she was ready to jump in after them, if we'd let her

... and she's spent!

Fall or not, Germans take every sun-bathing, bikini-weather opportunity they can get

Once the dog had run herself silly and we had soaked up enough sun to know we had to spend the rest of the day in it, we dropped Bailey off at home to crash and headed down the street to Stadtfest (yes, another fest) for a dog-free, adult afternoon. Of course, upon entering the fest, we found it filled with dogs (with much better behavior than ours is capable of) and children (who were gloriously not screaming), but we still enjoyed plenty of relaxation and alcohol.

I'm often still caught off-guard when I look up & realize the buildings that surround our daily life
A side note on one of the biggest attractions at the fest, the enormous hay bale-beings: While endearing and oh-so-autumn to most, I found them rather creepy - for more than the obvious reasons. My mother loves to tease that when I was a child and we happened by fields with hay bales all over them on a road trip, I would start screaming. Not screaming in a scared, "I think the hay bales are going to eat me" way, but more out of frustration in that "I can't believe they left those bales of hay strewn carelessly all over that field." Being a very particular and organized child, my mother assumed this is what caused such a deep-rooted reaction (stacked hay bales apparently elicited no response... boy, do I belong in orderly Germany, or what?). To this day, my mother never fails to point hay bales out with a laugh. So Mom, this one's for you.

Giant hay people, and yet I managed not to run away screaming

First things first, we grabbed a beer, a bite to eat and a place to enjoy both in the sunshine. Between the picture-perfect setting in the park and the gloriously summer-like weather, it didn't take much more than that to make our day.

Lunch of beer and the ubiquitous Flammekueche - only this time, Mediterranean style. So lecker!

After sufficiently filling our bellies, we were off to discover what this fest was made of. As we soon found out, not too much. There were a few tents of artisan goods, a few of food, a stage with some German-style music being played, but most of the attractions at this comparatively small fest were child-focused: small versions of carnival rides, hay bales to climb on (naturally, I kept my distance) and some farm animals to pet. 

Pyramid o' pumpkins

All kinds of autumn produce, including an amazing variety of potatoes

A freshly-shorn (while the children watched and giggled) sheep

One of the very massive cows - held in by a not-so-massive, make-shift fence

Wandering around half the Kurpark only took so long, after which we did the only thing left to do: find something else to eat (and drink!). Russ found a sausage bun of some kind, while I made a bee-line for the corn on the cob, whose tent also happily sold Erdbeersecco (strawberry sparkling wine), which I discovered to be delicious. We sat for a while on the grass, enjoying our fest food and the view, thankful for another weekend of beautiful weather before that inevitable chill sets in for the next eight or nine months.

We live here... *sigh*

We ended up heading home through town, which surprisingly, had even more happening than at the park. Beyond just more kiddie attractions and a whole slew of new cars on display (which frankly, after the auto show the day before, was really just a let-down), the whole town was open - shops, restaurants, everything. I remember when we first moved here and I couldn't imagine how we'd manage when life everywhere just shuts down for an entire day every week, and here I was appalled that shops had all opened up on a Sunday just for the festivities crowd. Funny how things change.  

*Daily Drop Cap by Jessica Hische