Friday, 30 August 2013

Week recap: the little things.

Yesterday was the first (week)day I haven't updated! We were too busy living life to write about anything, and we had a great day doing it :)

This week feels like every morning has been a struggle to wake up; Malcolm had early classes on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, and the sun is rising so much later than when we first got here - just as we start getting used to it rising early, summer ends! Nevertheless, I've enjoyed every single day.

Monday I did my usual grocery shopping for the week... I feel like I'm getting pretty good at it, and it was really nice having Malcolm come along to help me carry things. I baked biscotti, which really have become my replacement for Ouma rusks, and every cup of tea or coffee tastes better when there's something to dunk in it! Tuesday we had life-group, which was fun because Henok joined us and there were a couple other new people too. Also, we used to have supper there but it's just not practical anymore so we all brought snacks - resulting in a really great chocolate-feast. There was so much that we didn't finish it all. But so much fun, sharing about Zacchaeus and how his life changed so drastically upon meeting Jesus - not by upholding law or anything, but by coming to have a relationship with him.
Wednesday passed slowly... Malcolm met his class at the University campus and had a kind of scavenger hunt finding information through approaching and asking people for it. He enjoyed it, though the course has just got tougher again because he just started B1. I'm pretty sure he can function in German better than I can now!

Yesterday was really fun... It was a beautiful day and I wound my way along the quiet streets to Margaret's apartment. She showed me around some shops I hadn't been able to find. I had such a great time and discovered some nice little shops along back-streets and off the main shopping routes. One of my favourites was a ballet shop... the smell of lycra as you walk in is unmistakable and I loved looking at all the pretty leotards and dance-dresses! From there we went to a fabric store with so. much. choice. It really inspired me to get sewing again, though I'll first need to get a machine! She also showed me some shops which I'd seen from the outside but hadn't thought to go into - I thought it was just clothes but I found home-y stuff too... beautiful blankets and vases and coloured drinking glasses <3 Definitely going back there! Along the way back we stopped at a fruit-wagon and bought some things... HUGE nectarines, figs, and zwetschgen, which we sampled  when we got back to her apartment.

A little while later, Malcolm arrived and we headed out for coffee. This is the FIRST time I've had coffee from a restaurant here, so I was pretty keen!

We ended up at the Bierhaus, with a waiter horrified that we wanted coffee, but the view of the Rhein from where we were sitting was just so lovely.

Afterwards, Margaret bought us icecream... I had coconut and Malcolm had cookies - more to add to our list of flavours we've tried this summer! :D We wandered around and Margaret showed us little things we've missed before.

In front of St Martin's Cathedral
A cute alleyway-flower-box, fits perfectly with the cobble-stones.
A really interesting restaurant; they have Christmas all year round and have a pile of snow outside their door. 
Along the way we went off through a little passage into a courtyard with this fountain and some restaurants. It was a nice little retreat we'd never found before.

photos of us courtesy of Margaret! 
Then Margaret took us into this antique-shop, which, in the back, has a really cute coffee shop. It has such a cosy feeling and we'd really like to go there for tea sometime. She also pointed out this statue of a man mooning... it happens to be right over a really popular square, above some restaurants. It's really high up and one needs to know where to look!

We also went to the rathaus (townhall) and got a good look at it. There are statues all the way up the sides, and a really intricate entrance that was added afterwards, I think. There was a wedding reception going on by the looks of things, though I think it may have been finishing.

A little walk along and we found the Farina Perfume museum (the oldest perfume in the world, apparently), and an old building that used to be a market hall and banquet/festival/ballroom. It's now used for the Carnival that happens annually. It was also interesting to stop and read about the excavations happening here, they've found an old synagogue and some old houses... it's so interesting that one can see the work in progress.

As I mentioned, there's an annual Carnival, so there's obviously a huge need for costumes. A need well fulfilled by this costume shop we came across. They had SO much variety and the costumes were all pretty accurate! We also stopped by a music shop and marveled at the intricate instruments, trying to figure out the difference between trumpets and cornets. I felt pretty educated by the time we left.

On our walk back to the station, we passed Old st. Alban. It dates back to 1172 and was rebuilt in the medieval times as well as 1668 as a church hall. During world war 2 it was really badly damaged, and it was secured but not rebuilt. You can still see the columns and arches, and there's a memorial to the fallen and the prisoners of war.

Lastly, before saying goodbye, Margaret took us into a parking garage under the Dom, where as one walks down the stairs, there's this little bit of excavation. I find it fascinating how there's just bits of history all over!

It was such a lovely afternoon, just wandering the streets of the Adtstadt with no real plan, and seeing so much! There are little things to appreciate all over, and bits of history tucked away in places one doesn't always look, despite having walked those streets before.

Now, we're getting ready for the weekend, Ich muss haus-putzen for Petra's visit - she arrives this afternoon! Hooray! I can't wait to share what we get up to this weekend! Hope you all have a fun weekend, celebrating the change of seasons! :D


  1. Wow, looks a great tour, Indeed! all the pictures of your tour are fabulous specially 1st. thanks for sharing your experience..

  2. That is how it should be right? Live/Travel first, blog later. Looks like you are having tons of fun!

  3. Wow, girl! I'm so jealous of all the experiences you're having! I think I definitely have to fly out and visit. ;-)

  4. I love Germany's history, they have some beautiful castle and other historical monuments! You've captured some great shots of them here.

    This is Dusseldorf right? I'm planning a trip soon, will be using this as a bit of a reference guide :)

    Kate @ (formerly

    1. Absolutely! Thanks :)
      This is Koln/Cologne, but it's reeeally close to Dusseldorf, and you can see quite a lot in a day so it's worth a trip over :)