Thursday, May 14, 2015


Well-timed Maifest at Weihenstephan, where a new Maibaum had been erected earlier
Even less than a week in Bavaria will do it to you: You slow down and drink lots of beer. I mean, how would you react after traveling for the better part of 24 hours and, while exiting the airport grounds, you're asked whether you'd like to go to Maifest at Weihenstephan, the world's oldest brewery? Yes, right now, not the next day. And thus it starts.
A fresh Maibaum 's bark is first peeled in a pattern before the tree is painted about a year later

The trees stand in place for about 5 to 8 years
The Bavarians are a merry lot, never wanting for an occasion to celebrate something
The past few days have been taken up with getting together with friends (always connected to a biergarten, be it for lunch or for dinner), riding my bike, and just playing house-guy for a working woman and her son. The weather has been amazingly nice so that I've managed to ride almost 200 miles this week. The steel Ritchey that I keep here in Freising is now converted to Di2, the electronic shifting system that I use on my Seven and the titanium Ritchey, and riding on the well-paved roads and lanes is sheer joy, especially when it is sunny and spring says hello from every direction.
A new biergarten for me—one of the prettiest I have seen
There's just no way to lose weight here. Damn.
Last night, Sabine and I went to Uferlos, the annual week-long (free) music festival that gives Freising yet another reason to drink beer and eat sausages and other goodies. We had barely made it to the large tent where one of the bands was playing when all hell broke loose outside, with strong wind, rain, and what seemed to be hail. The thunder was as loud as the music, and we were admonished by the band leader to stay inside since there was a tempest warning—yet we'd be safe as long as we stayed away from any metal struts. A good excuse to have another Weizen! It was almost midnight when we finally rode the beater bikes through the now-calm streets back to the apartment.
Gravel-grinding the German way
Today is Ascension Day, the traditional Father's Day here in Germany and of course a holiday in Catholic Bavaria. For us that means that we're packing the car and are about to head south, to Italy. The plan is to spend two nights on the road before arriving in Castelmuzio in Tuscany where we are renting the same house as last year. Thanks to various religious holidays Sabine had to take only four vacation days for almost two weeks off. Not bad, this system.
Helmet-less Sabine on her evening commute from the train station
Time to lug the last few things to the Skoda and hit the road.


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