I woke up on Easter Sunday to another beautiful day. The sun was shining, birds were singing, a cock… was crowing in the distance, and I was awake at 9am – unheard of.
I cheerily hummed my way across the yard to the breakfast room, where Herr Scherr was playing the host with the most. While I was shambling around trying to locate spoons, napkins and tea, he presented me with a surprise gift.
I wanted to grab him by his manly German braces and plant a smacker on him, but his Russian wife could have been lurking nearby and that could have meant big trouble. Instead, I asked him for a pot of tea.
After dining like a queen and taking a shower, I popped back over to Herr Scherr to enquire about renting a bike for the day. He said he’d meet me outside the garage in around 10 minutes which, in German time, meant a minute and a half. He unlocked one of the garages to reveal a range of bicycles, choosing one that he thought would be a good fit for me. After hammering on the saddle a bit to lower it even further, I hopped on.
I wobbled around the yard a couple of times in front of him, he told me to have fun, probably mentally wrote the bike off, and I was on my merry way.
I didn’t have any real plan; I was just going to cycle around as much of the lake as I could manage. I am what the Germans refer to as a “Schönwetter-Radfahrer” so I was a bit out of practice and had no desire to kill myself on such a lovely day. I cycled towards the lake, where the Germans were out in force doing what Germans do best – walking, running, biking, eating, and drinking beer, though usually not all at the same time.
In case you hadn’t gathered from the previous post, BAD Saarow and Scharmützelsee are rather beautiful. In fact, it was hard to stay on my bike for any amount of time as I kept on jumping off to take photos of pretty things, which was virtually everything. The houses dotted around the lake are so cute, it’s hard to believe people actually live in them.
But the absolute winner had to be…
I cycled on and on, proud of myself for not having fallen off or killed anyone. There were cycle lanes most of the way and it was pretty flat so this wasn’t really much of an achievement. Eventually, hunger started gnawing at me so I began keeping an eye out for a likely establishment. After a while, I happened upon the charming Café Dorsch.
I nabbed the last remaining outdoor table, ordered soup and a glass of wine, enjoyed the sun on my face and took in the view.
It was in the bathroom after lunch that I realised one leg of my tracksuit bottoms was still tucked into my sock but it was a bit late to do anything about it at that stage.
With my legs complaining only a little, it was time to head back to town, with a few photo stops thrown in along the way. It was lucky I was by myself as I’m not sure anyone else would have had the patience for all the hopping on and off I was doing.
Once back, I noticed a small beach that I’d somehow missed before. I sat down at the beach-side café, taking the only table that wasn’t reserved.
As the soup had only half-filled a gap, I decided to order some Apfelstrudel and a cup of tea.
With the sky starting to cloud over a bit, I hauled my strudelled butt back onto the bike, wondering if I should now have a sign that said “Wide Load”. After a nap in the comfiest bed ever, it was time to eat – again. As I was still belching garlic from the night before, more garlic was out of the question so I opted for the pork medallions and croquettes in mushroom sauce.
If Herr Scherr was surprised that I was still alive and that the bike was still in one piece, he Germanically didn’t show it. Back in my room, I poured a glass of wine and settled in for a night of fiddling about with the photos I’d taken. My phone vibrating made me jump. It was Fireman Sam.
Fireman Sam: Do you want to meet up?
Me: Ugh, I’m so full and so lazy.
Fireman Sam: I’ll be at your hotel in ten minutes.
Me: Urgh. (Belch)
I put on some perfume to try to mask the garlic, onion, pork and mushroom aroma and walked outside. There he was. Now, if you think I’m mad for getting into a car with a virtual stranger, don’t worry – he was a German virtual stranger. I knew I’d be safe as houses.
He drove to the lake and we spent a lovely hour or so walking around in the moonlight, watching the lights reflecting off the water. I spoke bad German, he spoke good German and we somehow made it work.
All in all, the perfect end to the perfect weekend.