Does this mean I am a closet Vampire and didn’t know it? It was ground raw beef with a raw egg on top. The first time I did such a thing was almost exactly 50 years ago when I started college at a very German Preparatory school in Milwaukee. There was a bowl of what appeared to be raw meat on a table of food at some sort of party put on by the school. It is, of course, Beef Tartare. I liked it then and I liked it again today at a beautiful village at the Tegernsee (a lake) in Bavaria with the German Alps in the background. In
addition to the beef were relish, chopped onions, a couple of unknown seasonings on the plate along with some capers and anchovies. Along with the required beer (only ½ Liter
this time) and some dark bread, it made for a filling and authentic Bavarian meal.
Brigitta arranged her work so that she could take Verena, Micah, and me on a trip to
another picturesque setting at a lake nestled in a valley very close to the German Alps. This lake also was very clear, the water pure enough to drink. There was a very typical Bavarian village at the edge of the Tegernsee. The drive there through the forests and
fields was calming in contrast to the busyness of Munich. Brigitta has had enough of life’s experience to be comfortable talking about Mary Ann, Mary Ann’s death and the grief journey. She has worked in a setting with older people and people struggling with
disabilities, so she is quite familiar with the challenges that come with chronic disease. The conversation, especially as we sat having coffee later on a restaurant balcony overlooking the lake, was open and thoughtful. The rest of the trip took us to quaint
villages and rural areas.
After returning home and picking up some groceries, Brigitta put my clothes in the
washer for me earlier this evening and I have hung it on the rack to dry.
As evidence of how well we are being treated, at lunch I commented on how good the Sauerkraut smelled when walking by someone eating it as part of his meal. Almost as soon as I said it, the decision was made that we would have bratwurst and sauerkraut for supper tonight. Verena said she would be doing the cooking tonight, and the other two chipped in as everything was prepared and set out on the table. If that wasn’t enough, Verena and Silvi had gotten many scoops of different flavors of very special ice cream that is made locally. We shared them for dessert. We are becoming terribly spoiled and loving every minute of it.
After dinner while still at the table we engaged in especially meaningful conversation as we
talked about raising children, some social issues, religious matters and a variety of topics. There was a relaxed openness that seemed quite comfortable. A couple of times Verena and Silvi fell into uncontrolled fits of laughter, something that the two Sisters do on occasion. The rest of us had almost as much fun watching and listening as they were having laughing.
As I suspected and wrote in this blog before leaving for New Zealand last winter and
then confirmed as I traveled, it is not as much about the places as it is the people.