Memories from August 2010

Sunday, 1stAugust 2010

Today I had the feeling that spring was just around the corner. I walked to church and enjoyed the warmth of the sun. Soon I took off my cardigan and let the sunshine touch my bare arms. This is good for replenishing Vitamin D and for absorbing more Calcium, I told myself.

I was amazed how healthy I felt on a day like today. Last month I had persevered with several more tooth-extractions, There were some five teeth that had very old and quite large amalgam-fillings. I had made up my mind that it was time to get rid off these teeth. So now there aren’t anymore amalgam fillings left in my mouth. I wonder whether this is why I feel much healthier? Soon after all those extractions I had started a detoxing program. Kate, the naturopath at the Dental Centre, gave me four different supplements, which I keep taking as prescribed. In about six weeks I’ll go for another check-up to find out whether the detoxing of the various metals in my blood has been successful.

Most days I feel that walking for thirty minutes or so is no problem. I usually don’t get pains anymore and I hardly ever seem to run out of breath while walking. Besides, I used to wobble a bit to one side quite frequently. This seems to be better now. Come to think of it, I have been keeping quite well over the last few months. Didn’t I undertake an exhausting overseas trip from the end of May to the beginning of July this year, and didn’t I cope with the stress of travelling remarkably well? Who would have thought that I was capable of travelling for so long without a problem?

The last time I had travelled overseas had been in 1994. That year I had gone with Peter and daughter Caroline to Berlin. In 1997 and 2004 Peter travelled to Berlin by himself. So I had not been to Berlin for a long time. I felt very much like a stranger there during our recent visit in contrast to Peter who straight away felt at home again. He’s extremely familiar with this city. I think the biggest difference, compared to my previous visits, was the experience of feeling so much more elderly. I was for instance always grateful when younger people offered me their seat on the underground train or on the bus. Being elderly gave me the feeling that I could go slowly. I did not have to hurry as the younger people did. Whenever I felt a bit tired I could sit down and rest for a while.

We arrived in Berlin on the 31st of May. We had expected warm weather, but it was still very, very chilly and often extremely windy. Consequently I soon developed a terrible cold. However with adequate rest I quickly recovered from this attack of flu. When it had become a bit warmer, Peter and I enjoyed what nature had to offer, especially further up north in Mecklenburg/Vorpommern where we stayed for ten days with my brother Peter and his wife Astrid.

Mecklenburg/Vorpommern has forests and many, many lakes as well as canals connecting these lakes. The small towns in the area all cater for tourists. Very old houses have been lovingly restored. Some new developments include expensive marinas. Peter and Astrid showed us historical sites and castles where previously kings and queens liked to relax with their families, away from the hussle and bussle of Berlin.

The last few days of our stay in Germany we were back in Berlin. Day-temperatures had risen to well above thirty degrees by then. It did not cool down very much during the nights either. Daylight lasted till about ten at night. At four in the morning it was quite light again. Sometimes it seemed to be a bit light the whole night through!

Peter’s sister, who lives in Berlin, went on a lot of outings with us. Sometimes we were driven around in a car by friends or family members. However most of the time we used public transport – and very efficient transport at that. When you want to catch an underground train, you hardly ever have to wait for more than five minutes for the train to arrive!

Most people probably do not know that Berlin has many lakes, rivers and canals with hundreds of bridges. I do not know the exact number of bridges, however, I was told Berlin has more bridges than Venice! We saw quite a few of these Berlin waterways. Once we were taken on a boat- excursion that took us right through the city centre! On the boat we were served beer. frankfurts and potato salad. A few times we went on ‘book hunting’ excursions. Visiting friends and family in different parts of the city kept us busy as well.

On Friday, 2nd of July, was departure day. We left from Tegel Airport . This Airport is rather small and totally inadequate for a city like Berlin. Because of a lack of space very few big machines can fly in or out of Berlin. However, a much larger airport is to be opened in Berlin in about two years. If all goes well, Peter and I may then be able to go on a direct flight from Sydney to Berlin which would probably cut travelling time by a few hours.

This time we had a return flight from Sydney to Berlin via Kuala Lumpur and Amsterdam. We travelled KLM. To our great relief our luggage could be booked through to Berlin and later back to Sydney.

I was a bit apprehensive about our return flight since the schedule included a five hour stay at Kuala Lumpur. To my surprise I rather liked this stay at Kuala Lumpur Airport. The airport is huge. Internet connections are provided without charge. There is also no charge for drinking water! In the midst of the airport is a rainforest enclosure for travellers to enjoy. And of course there are shops, shops, shops! Also facilities for showers, massages, reflexology treatments and more. In the sitting area you can find stretch-out seats for tired travellers!

We did not want to go for dinner at one of the restaurants. We rightly assumed we would get dinner on the flight from Kuala Lumpur to Sydney. However we decided to go for coffee and cake at the Airport’s Deli France. And we enjoyed this! For a little while I also made use of one of the stretch-out seats. Why doesn’t every airport have those seats for sleepy travellers?

8 thoughts on “Memories from August 2010

  1. Quite the jet setter in 2010! I’ve been to Berlin but our stay was too short. It was part of our trip to Prague. My husband wanted to drive on the Autobahn. So we rented an Audi and drove to Berlin for the day. We returned late at night to the apartment we rented in Prague for the week.

  2. Hi, Mary-Ann! Thanks for commenting. Did your husband like to drive on the Autobahn? We’ve never been to Prague, but one of my brothers and his wife, who live not far from Berlin, have been there a few times and liked it. Here some great news: Peter and I are so lucky, we were able to book another flight to Berlin! We leave Sydney on the 8th of September this year and return on the 18th of November. This means we’re going to have a bit over two months in Germany. We said before ‘this is going to be our last trip’, but I think this time it’s really going to be our last one. Once you turn 80 the travel insurance is enormously expensive. Even past 75 it’s already quite a lot. Being able to book a less expensive flight was a bonus though.
    Our booking includes another longer stay at Kuala Lumpur Airport. I’m looking forward to this.
    And I’m looking forward to land at Berlin’s new airport!
    When where you jet-setting last and when do you plan on jet-setting again?
    Always love to hear from you. So long, Uta.

    1. Hi, Aunty Uta! Last year our biggest trip was to Spain (Madrid,Seville, Toledo, Salamanca) and Portugal. We landed in Lisbon and traveled to Porto and went on a River Cruise (small boat with a very small group. Lots of pampering!) EAch day we docked in a new place. We got to eat in an old monastery. We got to see famous wineries, lots of walks on little towns. It was all fun.

      1. This River Cruise sounds like fun. If you have any pictures about all the pampering maybe you can blog some of it! Memories like this are really precious.

  3. Aunty Uta—what a wonderful trip. I have never been to West Berlin. I have been to Munich, Stuttgart, Rottenberg, Heidelberg, and Frankfurt, and through the Black Forest, too. We even saw Neuschwansten Castle (i know my spelling is atrocious on that one)….It was all so beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Amazing to me that West Berlin has more bridges than Venice. I have been to Venice and vividly remember the bridges and canals….

    My husband and I would both love to see Australia some day…thanks for sharing your trip.

    1. I’m sure you’d enjoy a visit to Australia. Next month we’re going to meet a daughter of one of Peter’s cousins. She lives with her husband in Florida. They come to Sydney and are going to stay in a hotel there. By email a day has been agreed on already when we’ll meet them in Sydney walking to the Opera House and having lunch together. Her name is Angelica. One of her sisters who lives in England, came to Berlin last year for a family meeting and we were there too at the time. It’s great to meet family from all over the world!

      About Berlin, I didn’t mean just West Berlin. These days East and West are one city again. There have been immense changes since unification 21 Years ago!

      We’ve been to Neuschwanstein Castle with our youngest daughter in 1986 when she was only eight years old. The same year we went with her also to Annaheim for three days. We visited Disneyland every day of our stay there and loved it.

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