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Germany at last.

Our first morning in Krefeld was met with bright sunshine. I woke and looked out the window and along the tree lined street were trees in pure spring green, magnolias were on every block and the centuries old dwellings are of immense proportions.

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We’re on the second floor of this house.

I had a relaxed breakfast on the verandah overlooking the gardens and pinched myself at my good fortune.  Gone was the niggling insecurity  of “why am I here” that rears its head sometimes as a Tutor on the road.

As an explanation for my comments I’ve  had two months travel so far. Three  countries and hundreds of  people to interact with and instruct and personal space is snatched in small parcels of time.

Later in the morning, Lisa and I decided to walk to a local park we saw on the map Claudia gave us and after a small interaction with a couple of workmen over the road, we were pointed in the right direction.

How many times did we smile, how many times did we tell each other how lucky we were?  Neither of us take this trip  for granted, many years of hard work brings a trip like this to fruition.

We walked down past houses so different to our own. Lisa lives in the high desert of New Mexico and I live in the Adelaide Hills in South Australia. Lisa preparing for Summer and I for Autumn.

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The park was a small forest with quite a large lake and natural foliage that would rank in the best documentaries.  Here we were on our first day and it was just perfect. How lucky are we.

We walked in comfort, the sun was gently warm no breeze and the scents of flowers and foliage was enchanting, we came upon a wonderful beer garden.   

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My friends would be rolling on the floor in mirth  to think of me in a beer garden, it’s not a place I would normally visit but in reality it was a huge outdoor restaurant, overshadowed by a large two story historic villa.

This was our first day, for Petes sake could it get any better than this? So we ordered 

Knackwurst, fresh apple cake and coffee. We just couldn’t help but smile.

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We wandered back to our Air B&B and I had the desire to rest a little, but no, Claudia was on her way and she drove us to the nearby town of Linn.

Linn lies with its historic city center within the lower Rhenish lowlands about 5 km (3.1 mi) east of the Krefeld city center. The place known as Linn was first mentioned in an Imperial document composed between 1090 and 1120.

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We visited  the Burg Linn (Linn Castle, a castle on the Rhine surrounded by a water-filled moat–construction on which began in the twelfth century, along with the layout of its fortifications and parkland; and the Jagdschloß (hunting lodge) located on the grounds of the Burg Linn.

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We stopped for coffee and waffles with blackberry sauce and ice-cream, 3 spoons and one plate.

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It went down a treat.

The town is wonderful to walk around. The streets are narrow and the tall houses overshadow the rows of cobblestones on the street below. It was evident that the owners were fiercely proud of their small part of the city. Each door entrance was decorated with blooming flowers. Window boxes captured colors as they hung from all the sills. They looked like flower eyelashes.

We looked into on house that was being renovated and the owners offered to show us the tiny rooms where generations of their immediate family had lived.

Further on we came to an impressive gate and on greeting the owner who was outside watering the plants we struck up a conversation with turned into a two hour, red wine enhanced visit to his amazing house and outbuildings.

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I mean how do those things just happen. It was fate probably.  He is invited to my presentation tomorrow night so I do hope he comes so we can officially thank him for wonderful conversation and the opportunity to see and amazing heritage dwelling.

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Dinner was at a local restaurant roast beef – braten and I can’t spell the traditional fried potato dish with sumptuous desert. I think we sort of rolled home which is a bit difficult when you have 20 steps to reach your apartment. 

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