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cafe_01It’s been snowing, with enthusiasm. The roads are cleared within a couple of hours and then ploughed every hour or so after that, and gritted in between so that the Very Important Drivers aren’t inconvenienced. Pavements are the responsibility of anyone living alongside them, if they can be bothered, and cycleways, well, no-one uses bicycles in winter. Well, no-one important anyway. Important people use cars.

I am a tad annoyed about this. Fighting to stay upright while bouncing along a rutted ice covered cycle lane in a gale, while drivers swish past on the cleared road does nothing for an even temper.

I’ll get over it. Doesn’t give me much to blog about though.

So, instead, I’ve got an update on our classroom art project, the one I got roped into last year. So far. People wanted a sketch of Stuttgart, but after making the more iconographic buildings things got a bit art deco and Steampunky, partly to give a slightly more utopian optimistic feel than you’d get from looking at the back end of Stuttgart as it really is, and partly because then no-one can say I got it wrong. I also have to design it so that everyone can be involved, so a lot of the city will be fairly simple shapes so that we can give people three colours and instructions on how to make base colours, highlights and shadow.

I still haven’t managed to get the Quadratura effect quite right, and the ‘cafe’ sign looks a bit lost. On the other hand everyone agreed to the idea, although that was probably because they knew they’d have to come up with another one if they didn’t.

Now I have to make a more detailed version ready for a projection, and a second window “with more forest and trees and stuff…”

I’d just like to apologise to the cyclists in our area for the weather we had over the weekend.

On Friday the weather report was very upbeat, predicting sunshine and a the odd fluffy cloud, and even enough warmth to leave your coat at home. On Saturday the sun shone, I was out building a shed with friends, the weather forecast was showing bright yellow symbols into next week, sheep gamboled in the fields* and all was right with our world.

Then, on Saturday night we had monsoon-standard rain. Certain people will put this down to meteorological conditions, warm air rising from the hills et c but there is in fact a simple explanation.

On Saturday evening I washed the Xtracycle.

I knew it was a risk, but the poor thing had been rather neglected all summer and was looking, appropriately, like it had been in a farmyard for some time. I knew I shouldn’t, but I figured that just a quick clean wouldn’t hurt, and then I’d have a nice shiny bike for the rest of the week.

Now, of course the roads are soaking wet and the gravel trails are full of muddy puddles and the bike was once again filthy by the time I got to work.

So, like I said… Sorry…

*Presumably. We don’t have any near the village right now, but it was good gambolling weather so I’m assuming that somewhere gambolling was taking place.

sunrise_01

The long silence was not due to my having gone out on the lash to celebrate the end of the apprenticeship. That would be unlikely because 1: I am ‘somewhat’ older than the average apprentice and I don’t need any help to do more silly things in public, 2: An extreme introvert who tends to hide during parties, and most importantly 3: I really dislike the taste of alcohol. I appreciate this puts me in the running for the Most Boring Person on the Planet competition, but regular readers knew that anyway.

The last two weeks were mainly spent doing a translation job for a documentary (I now know enough about heart disease to make me seriously paranoid), getting my CV up to date, playing with the boys and Beautiful Daughter, and cycling through snowstorms to pick up ‘important’ pieces of paper from various offices.

Final_paperwork

Remember, there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad organisation and poor time management.

Oh, and I now have the paperwork to prove that I’m a Real Carpenter, at least as far as the state of Baden-W├╝rttemberg is concerned. Still working in what we do next though…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA This is the same view as last week. Being able to see the road ahead is quite exciting.

The weather does this quick change every year and it still takes me by surprise. I’m not complaining though.

In case you think I’m showing off, it’s still freezing in the mornings.

Last week we had a village festival and were all walking about in shirt sleeves; this morning I opened the shutters and…

Winter just arrived. At least you know where you are with the seasons here, even if they do make us jump.

Beautiful sunrise too.

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