… and then we were in Linz/Rhein…

It was like a step back in time… For a long while, every time I came home I found something had changed, but this time, I was very aware of how same it still is from since 30 years. Same shops, some of them hadn`t even been painted since I entered secondary school, and I felt like I still knew every pothole.

Pretty as it no doubt is – I couldn`t cope with this town any more. At 6000 inhabitants, it once represented the big wide world to me (I lived in a village 10km up through the forest), but now, I was puzzled because I couldn` t connect to WiFi anywhere, nor could I get rolls in the morning because the baker`s oven had broken, and when we walked into a wine bar at 9.30pm on Sunday night we were told they had actually just closed.  Sales staff rush up to you almost as soon as you start browsing their shelves and give you advice on how to wear that dress as you` re stepping out of the changing room in it. Everything is very personal… too personal, at times. I feel everybody knows each other bar me. I feel we are turning heads for speaking English. Even the language – everyone is talking very slowly, and their dialect is so familar it seems unreal.

I feel strange (in the proverbial sense) and at the same time taken care of. A woman rushes up to help as I almost fall over an uneven cobble, and I`ve got a feeling I know her from somewhere…

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Cigarette and Chewing Gum Dispensers

… and because there was a festival going on…

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