Kitakyushu Bamboo Light Festival 2021

In the early 1990s, we spent three years teaching in Kitakyushu, which is on the island of Kyushu, the southernmost and third largest of the four main islands of Japan.

We made many friends during our time there, we enjoyed the rural life in Wakamatsu-ku, and our firstborn was born in Yahatahigashi-ku.

One of my friends, Kazumi Kawano, whom I met in Kitakyushu all these years ago, took these magnificent photos during the Kitakyushu Bamboo Light Festival.

The festival took place from 23 – 31 October.

The 30.000 bamboo lanterns on display were made by volunteers.

Kokura Castle 小倉城 竹あかり
Kitakyushu, Japan

Kazumi, thanks again for sharing your photos here with us. It is truly appreciated.

Virtual Tour of Mainberg Castle, Germany, on 12 September 2021

Every year on the second Sunday in September, the Open Monument Day is being held nationwide.

This year, Mainberg Castle will also participate, but only virtually.

To visit, you need to go on their website: https://www.fv-schloss-mainberg.de/

The website provides ZOOM Client, which lets you partake in 30-minute visual tours which run from 13:00 – 17:00 on 12 Sep 2021 (Central European Time).

Driving by Former Ledward Barracks, Schweinfurt

As I had mentioned in my previous post, we visited my hometown area of Schweinfurt, and whatever photos I took were taken from the car.

Franz-Schubert-Straße in Schweinfurt
Former MP Station Ledward Barracks

The new campus building for the University of Applied Sciences sits fairly close to a remaining original Ledward Barracks building.

Here we reached the end of our drive-by coming along Franz-Schubert-Strasse. We turned left onto the Niederwerrner Strasse to continue our little journey.

Oberursel Street Life in May 2021

With restrictions still in place for regular shops (shopping only by click-and-collect), we took advantage of a partly cloudy day to get out and buy some street food in downtown Oberursel about two weeks ago. The month of May was full of rainy days.

During some sunny and dry moments, I took these photos in the Strackgasse near the Marktplatz. This Pig Master with its mask on is keeping guard at the door as only three customers can be present in the shop at any time.

Metzgerei Brinkmann

Further up the Strackgasse – what I thought to be a toad in stone actually looked like more like a drunk man heading home on all fours upon closer inspection. I had to get down on my knees as well. Interesting door step decoration.

St. Ursula Church, Oberursel

We enjoyed our snack sitting by the fountain facing the church. Halfway through though, the heavens opened their gates.

COVID situation in Germany in April 2021

This is where I usually write about my travels. The last trip to take place was in February 2020, just before the first lockdown began in mid-March.

We have been in lockdown mode for quite some time. With 16 German states, and each carrying its own set of regulations, it gets rather confusing at times. You might have heard Germans can fly to the Spanish island of Mallorca, but can’t rent a vacation home on the German shore.

In Germany, we can’t travel yet, because hotels, B&Bs, and the likes are closed to the public. We can’t eat in restaurants yet, but we can get deliveries.

We can’t get vaccinated yet, because there isn’t enough vaccine to go around. Priority groups go first, and just this past weekend, my husband was able to register for his vaccination (now all teachers get their turn). Of course, this was only the registration. Who knows how long it will take to actually get notified for an appointment.

We have adjusted, of course. We have also discovered new likes, such as going on picnics. This is in regulation with the keep-distance rule, and we can be outdoors.

With more time on my hands, I printed out a slew of British Tea Time sandwich recipes. White wine, which I usually do not care for, does find its purpose at picnic time.

My idea of Outdoor Isolation works really well. It takes one minute on foot to get to the park. Passersby smiled, and a bit of wine made my own smile even bigger. I plan on having picnics from now on whenever I can.

Picnic Time and Outdoor Isolation in Germany

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