Sunday, 16 December 2012

Reunion with the Roede Orms

One of the reasons we settled on the Biscay area for our winter quarters was that it would be easy to visit friends and family on the Continent over the non-sailing months. At the end of November we left Fettler snugged down in Mortagne and headed for Germany. After a week with my parents in Berlin we started to criss-cross Germany using the excellent car pool system, a bit like organised hitch-hiking and possibly the cheapest way to travel Germany short of hitch-hiking itself. First we visited friends in Darmstadt (the ones who introduced us to sailing some 15 years ago by chartering a boat on the Norfolk Broads and inviting us along) and then hopped back north to reunite with the Roede Orms, last seen in Porto Santo.

The Kiel Canal, linking the North Sea to the Baltic
Roede Orm is now tucked up in a big barn for the winter, but the Conrads are just as welcoming in their land quarters by the Kiel Canal. The sailing season here is over for all but the hardiest, with Baltic temperatures of down to -10C at night.

Roede Orm in her deluxe winter storage, a big barn on a farm
Buelk Light House, on the foggy Baltic coast
It's nice to be in Germany at Christmas time with all the good old traditions that this entails: advent calendars (not just chocolate and not just for kids, with options ranging from lego to tea) and adventskranz, Christmas markets with mulled wine and, of course, Feuerzangenbowle.

Third Advent in the Conrad household
A walk in the snow with 12-year-old beagle Toke
The plan is to potter around Germany a few weeks longer before rejoining Fettler in the New Year and getting ready to put back to sea.
So, best wishes of the season to all and a happy and prosperous 2013!


Stefan Conrad said...

Super Artikel! Schön das ihr bei uns seid!

Victoria Martin said...

How we missed you all over Christmas! I hope M+B+l+l were lovely as always!

Vic x