9 January 2011

Germany for Christmas

Since our return from the frozen north, I've been laid low with the worst case of flu ever recorded on this earth.  I've only been operating at about 30%, so J has been doing the cooking and washing up.  I've just been able to maintain doing the laundry or having a shower, before stumbling to the couch and collapsing in a pathetic, coughing, sneezing, aching, wheezing wreck; waiting for the room to cease its crazy whirling, and the polka-dotted elephants to stop dancing before my eyes. 

As one who does not regularly fall ill, (the last time was when we lived in Dubai back in 2005), it's poleaxed me.  J's mum was sick when she stayed with us at the beginning of Dec; then J went down with it; and then we travelled to and from Germany in trains and planes full of people with coughs and sneezes, so I guess that it was long overdue, and hopefully this will top-up my resistance levels for at least another 5 years to come.

Another thing, that I guess did not help, was having to do a lot of this:

We felt like our whole week with J's family was spent shovelling snow from pavements and carparks, or walking the family dogs through knee-high snow in the fields above the house.

At least Bonnie, (the youngest of the 3 family dogs), had fun and we provided her with some extra exercise and diversion.

It was extremely beautiful, and very cold; around -10degC on average.  As the air was dry, I didn't have any problems with my Canon 5D2 fogging up, and it behaved perfectly.  I did manage to get a few good shots under grey skies, but my fingertips just about broke off with the cold, as I would have to remove my gloves to adjust the camera settings.

We were lucky during one walk when the sun dipped below the cloud cover and shone blood red, before setting for the evening.

It was our first white Christmas where it actually snowed most days, and J's family was happy that we made the effort to get there, so I guess that it was all worthwhile.

Ask me again in a few days' time when I start to, once more, feel human.


Macthomson said...

Great shots, in spite of the polka-dotted heffalumps!

Jayne said...

You've managed to make the white stuff so very appealing hon! I would've loved to throw a stick for the puppy.........all dogs are eternal puppies right? :-)

As always, the photographs are awesome. I hope you're feeling a bit better hon? {{{hugs from me}}}

nzm said...

Thanks Malcolm - luckily the images were taken before the heffalumps stomped in!

Jayne: thanks - feeling better now, but still pretty weak and out of it. Bonnie is an awesome dog and we'd love to have her. She needs a lot of stimulation and entertainment which Jen's family can't quite provide her, due to their various health problems. She needs more exercise than she gets - although there are already 2 hour-long walks each day. But the homelife is pretty boring - and she needs more excitement! She loves it when we visit and we take her out more, and along different routes to the ones she normally walks.

Pandabonium said...

Ah the sweet doggy makes me miss my Golden Retriever, Lady, who was one of the sweetest dogs that blessed my life.

The snow looks so beautiful. What's the shovel for? I use solar powered snow removal. Slow, but effective. Especially for a lazy lout like me. :^)

nzm said...

Goldens are great dogs, aren't they?

Hey - you can use solar removal when you get a piddly amount of snow like you did the other day, and then the sun comes out again!

The shots that I took which show sunlight, were taken on the same afternoon. I.e. this is the only time that we saw sun for the whole week! The rest of the time was grey, gloomy and often snowing.

There's a law in Germany where residents are responsible for clearing the snow from the footpaths outside their properties, and it must be done in the morning. So we were obeying orders!

Keefieboy said...

So that's the photos for your Christmas cards sorted for the next 10 years! And brilliant they are too.

nzm said...

Thanks Keef! Thing is, by the time December rolls around, I'll have forgotten about these and be scrambling, as per usual!

Jayne said...

There's something for you on my blog :-)

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

As other people have said, these are marvellous photos. We rarely see snow here of course, only once in Geelong in many years but one trip by train from Melbourne to Bendigo I saw plenty. I wrote a poem at time linking the stark black and white shapes of the scenery with a crying woman at the railway station back in Melbourne. Two days later it was all gone, totally back to dreary landscapes.

Darlene said...

"very cold"??? Give me a break! Come to Canada if you want "Very cold" LOL. Last week we were at -35c with a wind chill that made it feel like about -44c!!! -10c is balmy here, people put on shorts! l-)

nzm said...

Wendy: you may not get snow, but I hear that Vic has received a lot of rain. Hope that you're ok!

Dar: that's a good reason for not moving to Canada!

Sandie said...

I am surprised that you have not received any photography awards yet! At this rate, I am sure it will happen quite soon! You should try to enter some competitions!
And I don't mean to rub it in your nose, BUT our Christmas was with bikinis on the beach! Temperature was 30 +, na na na na!