Chilling in Stuttgart

April 1, 2016 at 3:42 pm (Germany)

IMG_0906I must admit to being a bit behind with this post.  I had good intentions to have it posted BEFORE my Easter holidays begun.  Considering how stressed and busy I was, this was a very ambitions aim.  Instead I have given myself a day off being busy during my skiing holiday in Austria with Danny, and am finally getting around to at least posting the mischief I had been up to before the holidays begun.

I’ve had quite a lot of visitors as late.  Damaris’ mother Gudrun is currently doing a personal development course in Degerloch of all places!  So she has been to stay twice and will be back a number of times before the summer holidays.  It works out perfectly for her as she can walk to her course from my place and it’s great catching up with her.  Gwen also came for a surprise visit and we kept up our musical tradition.  This time we saw Rocky which I really enjoyed.  Not sure if I can make a show happen for her birthday and Christmas present again next year though!

Straight after I saw Gudrun, Damaris and I finally worked out a weekend for me to go visit her in Ravensburg!  We hadn’t seen each other in over a year, which is a bit silly since we really don’t live that far away from each other these days.  We had lots of catching up to do and we should definitely try and see each other more often.  It all worked out really well because Damaris’ sister Janina had suggested to their father that they should go skiing on the Saturday, he then invited Damaris which of course meant I got to go too!  So I got to go skiing AND see both Uwe and Janina.  Happy times all round. 🙂

On the Sunday Damaris and I visited the Ravensburg Museum, which of course is all about the famous game board and jigsaw making company.  Some of my favourite games are Ravensburger… Phase 10, Enchanted Forest, Make and Break so it was pretty cool to find out about the history of the company.  I would say that the company is best known for their jigsaw puzzles outside Germany.  You can tell products are by them by the distinctive blue triangle and Ravensburger written in white on the bottom right hand corner of the box.

Our disastrous hockey season has finally come to an end.  We managed to score 4 goals and had a whopping 132 goals scored against us.  Needless to say, those of us who played the majority of the season were very happy to put away our indoor sticks and are looking forward to some success on the field.  For the first time in my life I also had the opportunity to play indoor hockey undermanned.  This is not an experience I would wish upon anyone.  It was extremely hard work but an absolutely amazing experience because we really did work as a team.  We stayed positive and had lots of fun.  We put up a fight and I am extremely proud of both that and my teammates.

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The 2016 Halfmarathon has been run and conquered.  This year I decided to tackle Frankfurt as the weekend worked and I could team it with a visit to Darmstadt.  A few weeks prior I ran a fairly hilly 10km race with two friends and was disappointed with my time.  I had really hoped to clock the 1hr mark and was unfortunately a few seconds over.  This put a kick up my but and aimed with a final three week Stefan training plan I made the most of what little time I had and tried to stay as positive as I could.  I was a little worried about my knees (they seem to be quite unpredictable) but I was sure I would make it round.  Cheered on by Stefan, who not only chauffeured me to the event, but also made sure he cheered me on at four different points, I ran what my legs wanted to and was rewarded with a very unexpected PB.  My official Halfmarathon time is now 2:08:12 taking three minutes off my first race in Köln, 2013.  This kind of made up for not receiving a medal… I do like the homemade one that Alex and I put together though!

 

I loved being back in Darmstadt and the lazy way I could organise my time.  Fiona, Gwen and Anneli were all away and Franzi was sick so I had ample time to catch up with people.  I stayed with Doris and her family and really enjoyed Doris’ amazing cooking and feeling a part of their little family for the weekend.  I saw Astrid for our coffee chat and did some shopping.  I always find it much easier to shop in Darmstadt, I guess I just know the ins and the outs of the city better than Stuttgart.  Seeing Julie for a drink was also lovely.  She insisted on a celebratory drink, perhaps that’s what made me run so well in the half the next day?  I also FINALLY got to see Rob again… our schedules haven’t crossed in ages so it was good to catch up and have a good old Aussie chat.

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The birthday champagne competition is officially on.  This is Simon’s contribution.  You might remember Suzie’s golden bottle from last year?

I’ve turned older since I wrote this… 32, single and living in Europe with some exciting adventures ahead!  These seemed like the perfect reasons to celebrate, especially considering my birthday was on a Saturday.  I invited a whole lot of people from hockey, school and the Stuttgart Aussie group and we had a great night.  I was disappointed that only Stephie came from hockey… there were actually more people from my hockey team in Darmstadt at the party as both Gwen and Anneli came!  But everybody else made up for it.  Even my old flatmate Anselm came and although he knew nobody he stayed the whole night!  Thank you to everybody who came, contributed and for the amazing presents.  Each and everyone of you are a reminder of why I love living here and why leaving will be so hard!

 

xoxo

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