Friday, June 5, 2020

Say It With Flowers

The day before yesterday my Kieser training resumed with Corona restrictions, i.e., a reduced number of people in the gym, practicing on fewer machines, and at a distance. Fixed one-hour time slots are reserved on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings for members of the so-called risk group. It was the first training since March 13, and boy, my body is still aching.

Yesterday I had lunch with the same lady at the same restaurant where we had our last common meal on March 19.

While sipping our usual Winzersekt (sparkling wine or winemakers‘ champagne) aperitif, we compared notes. How did we arrive there?

March 10: In Freiburg, all public events with more than 1000 people were prohibited

March 14: Mayor Horn introduced local Corona restrictions for the city of Freiburg. Schools, daycare centers, theaters, museums, and administrative offices were closed; distance rules must be observed although restaurants remained open.

March 19: Because of his fast local action, young Mayor Horn was on national television. As we now know, every day counts. You cannot be too early when attacking the spread of a pandemic.

March 22: Chancellor Merkel announced Corona restrictions for all of Germany. Compared with lockdowns in neighboring countries, we experienced “restrictions light.” Although all public life was quelled in Germany, we were always allowed to leave the house, take long walks, and go to the grocery store as many times in the day as we wanted to provided we kept the distance.

While public life is starting up in Germany, the distance rule and the wearing of mouth-nose-covers in shops and public transport will remain obligatory as the chancellor confirmed yesterday night on national television.

In Germany, all new local Corona hot spots so far are easily traced to public gatherings where contaminated aerosols were spread in closed spaces and distances not kept.

These days Red Baron conducts his social activities including restaurants outdoors. Since the virus will stay with us, I fear that the famous second wave of infections will arrive in the fall when people are staying indoors.

During the Corona restrictions, I enjoyed long walks to make up somehow for the missing Kieser training. We had an exceptional spring and early summer here in Freiburg. Temperatures were too high for the season, and all flowering was early.

Whenever I passed by a front garden, I not only admired the abundant flowers, but I took photos in portrait mode on my iPhone.

Roses are exceptionally vibrant this year, but other flowers impressed me as well. Here is a collection of my shots starting in late February up to the beginning of June, but don’t ask me any names.

When I - still and even more aching - returned from today's Kieser training, I learned that the US ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, will leave Berlin for higher tasks in the Trump administration. We won’t shed any tears over this Grenexit.

Grenell retweeted:

Mister Ambassador, you are very diplomatic! For his remark, Grenell earned only a shrug of the shoulders. It is so sad: For most Europeans, the US is no longer the measure of all things.

Rumors have it that POTUS will withdraw 9,500 US-troops from German soil. The Poles are rejoicing. Ab nach Polen, as we say in German (Off to Poland).

Meanwhile, Chancellor Merkel invited all the heads of government of the EU member states to an EU-China Summit to be held in Leipzig in September 2020. I bet they all will attend. It‘s the economy, stupid.

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