Sunday, March 23, 2008

fire away

So Easter here, at least in the villages, is a fun event full of flames. Every spare stick of wood gets heaped into a bonfire in a paddock on the edge of town and as the day starts to darken towards evening it's set alight. The entire village normally turns up to the event and drinks. A lot.

I was introduced to the Easter fire my first easter in Germany, way back at the very start of this millenium, and boy does this sentance make me feel old. I'd made a friend a few days before, a lovely young German chap we'll call Klaus, who'd taken pity on the prospect of me spending the holidays alone working in the lab. So he dragged me back home with him to enjoy the festivities.

Now what I wasn't aware of was that I was apparently the first girl he'd ever brought back to meet the folks before and so his parents, siblings, great aunts and various and sundry neighbours all assumed that I was THE ONE. I was greeted by half the town when I extracted myself from our piles of chip and lolly packets in the car. I was given pride of place at the table, had food constantly foisted on to me and everyone tried their best to communicate. At this point my german was still incredibly bad, but Klaus's parents had recently done some evening courses in English, so we were muddling along.

Now Klaus didn't actually say anything to dissuade his parents from their assumptions of our level of intimacy. Having known him only three days however, I can assure you that we weren't terribly close. In fact, I think he was rather happy to have produced a chick that found some approval.

So I shouldn't have been really surprised when later that night, standing around in a field observing a bonfire and getting drunk on cheap apple schnapps, Klaus's father stumbled his inebrieated way over to me and in heavily accented and broken English said:

"Klaus's mother and I, we're getting old. We want grand children."


Gardner said...

beautiful! And, how many "grand-children" have been delivered to date?!?! ;-) I assume, perhaps incorrectly, that the DrH is not Klaus!

Dr. J said...

True, DrH is not "Klaus". "Klaus" has at least one child (probably more by now) so I imagine they're happy!

The Ripley Porch said...

If the German parents made that comment to you....they are fairly desperate for Klaus to "settle down" and become a regular