Visiting the former East Germany, part 3 & finale

Day 3

We agreed the day before that I would cook that day. We initially considered cooking in J.’s and G.'s place and having R. and troops come over for lunch. However, we figured that it would be more convenient for the kids if we had everything done in R.'s and T.' place. So, we decided to proceed with the latter plan and invited J. and G. over to R.'s and T.'s place instead. However, when we met J. and G. for breakfast, we received some bad news - one of J.'s church members had passed away the night before. They told us that it was unlikely that they would be able to join us for lunch since they would be busy helping to notify the family and making necessary preparations for the funeral and such.

We left for R.'s and T.'s place after breakfast. Just as we were about to reach, Jessi popped a question, "Did you bring along the spices?" Almost immediately, smoke started coming out of my nostrils. I harnessed every ounce of patience in me and calmly responded, "Were they not in the bag of food that you asked me to take along?" "No, but I should have had put them in there last night," she responded. I almost hit the brakes, jumped out of the car and yelled on the top of my lungs. Fortunately, over the years, I've learned to take a more civilized approach to vent my anger - I just keep quiet.

Schloss OranienbaumJessi came out with a great idea. T. was at a flea market not far away from J.'s and G.'s place and she could pick the spices up on her way back. Somehow, that idea simply sounded too good to be true. As it always happens in such dramatic times, the recipient's (T.'s) phone was not reachable. I tried so hard to smile the catastrophe away but the smoke just kept building up. It was about 15 km back to J.'s and G.'s place from where we were and I wasn't about to turn around and drive back there. So, we decided that we would drive to R.'s and T.'s place and try calling another mobile phone of hers (we didn’t have the number with us).

When we arrived, we rushed up to their apartment and tried calling her on the other number. The phone was unreachable as well. That was it for the great idea. We decided that we had to make do and make the most of the situation. Jessi and I drove to a nearby supermarket to buy some ingredients for the dishes I wanted to prepare and hoped that we would be able to find similar spices there as well. Honestly, I wasn't very hopeful about that. But lo and behold, when we got there, we did indeed find the spices and all the ingredients we needed. Now my smile was starting to look authentic and I began warming up to my wife again.

Schloss OranienbaumWe started preparing lunch as soon as we got back from the supermarket. El. helped a lot too. I cooked some plain rice, fried some noodles and made Chop Suey. At about noon, we all had lunch together. I don't mean to be blowing my trumpet, but I think they all enjoyed the meal. We packed some food for J. and G. as well.

We spent the afternoon there. El. and Al. had their naps while we lazed around the living room. At around 4 pm, T. took El. to his friend's birthday party. The rest of us decided to take a stroll in the park of a nearby castle, Schloss Oranienbaum (first picture in this post). It was a little wet and we had to take shelter every now and then when it started to drizzle but we managed. In fact, I took the second picture in this post while we were stuck in the souvenir store. Equipped with my camera, I took quite a few shots as we were walking about. The park is big and well-maintained. The castle itself is pretty run down but restoration works is currently ongoing. I expect that in a few years the castle will be restored to its former glory. I don't really know anything about the castle other than the fact that it was previously the residence of a Dutch princess. I found a German website though with more information about the castle - click here.

After our walk, we went back to R.'s and T.' place. Shortly after that, T. and El. arrived as well. They both had a good time at the party. Paraphrasing El.'s description of the party, he said that there were equal number of boys and girls, and there were a few blond chicks that were nice to him. *sigh* They start young here in Germany. We had dinner together and then Jessi and I went back to J.'s and G.'s place. We still had time to chat with them both and see some photos of theirs when we got there. After that, we all went to bed.

Day 4 / Finale

We got up pretty early that day. J. and G. needed to leave their house by 8:15 am and we said our goodbyes before they left. After that, we loaded our car with our things and drove over to R.'s and T.'s place for breakfast. We had a good time with them in the morning but soon had to be on our way. We had a 5- to 6-hour journey ahead of us and we were both working the next day. As soon as we finished bidding them farewell, we hopped into our car and drove off. The trip back took us about 6 hours in total, including a stopover for lunch at one of the rest spots along the highway.

Overall, we had a splendid weekend in the east of Germany. It was a little exhausting at times but worth every bit of it.

Thanks to J., G., R., T., El. and Al..

joel@jjsolomon.com

4 comments:

Jessika said...

Wonderful! You´re great, my love!
The kids are soooo cute & adorable!

Reghuel said...

Thank you for the nice pictures and the review of the weekend.
The malaysian food you cooked was indeed delicious! We are so sorry for the almost big trouble with the spices!
Theres & Reghuel

jerad said...

Nice narration and pics. Jessi was let off the hook for not bringing the spices eh.

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