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  • Writer's pictureNigel


Updated: Oct 3, 2022

🍂 Autumn 秋

Have you ever owned a sailing boat? No, neither have I...... 帆船 (はんせん)

,を所有したことがありますか。いいえ、私も持っていません....😀, but this is what you do if you have one. You have to haul it out of the water every 6 months and clean its bottom. Ha Ha! like a big baby, you are saying. No, this is a BIG DEAL. When it's moored in a tidal river it gets covered with algae and barnacles, まんきゃくるい蔓脚類, which you have to scrape off with.....well....a big scraper. These growths create a "drag" which slows down the boat, especially a sailing boat. So here is Rachel's yacht, having been hauled out of the river Medway (UK) on a misty September morning. It's clean now, and ready to go back into the river. I asked her what it looked like before she cleaned it. "The propeller was awful" she said. Well, I have asked her next time to send me a picture of it before the clean-up.......! そうじ前の写真お願いします!


Tuesday: Did you know that if you want to cross into Poland from Ukraine you have to wait 15 hours at the border? Such is the queue of buses leaving the country (ironically, that is the time it takes to fly from Frankfurt to Tokyo). Well, it makes this bar of chocolate even more special. Svitlana, who has recently returned from Lviv, must have been tempted to eat it... I would have been sorely tempted.......スヴィトラーナさんのウクライナチョコレート.

It is extraordinarily rich and packs a real punch. A dark chocolate pepped up with salt......I hope they supply their young men with it. 若い男性はこのチョコレートが必要です.

Wednesday: "The gas man cometh" is a sort of typical English joking phrase (cometh is old-fashioned English).......At least my heating had not been sabotaged (unlike Nord Stream 1), and could be repaired by our trusty Langen Heizungsbau/Klimatechniker, Herr Prohatzky. He is one of those rarities - a laughing, hardworking Handwerker who knows his stuff, and will respond to your call. View of my cellar.....lovely isn't it? 私のちかしつ.....

This is Arbeit, real work. By some quirk of language assimilation, the Japanese word for casual, part-time work is "Arubeito" (アルバイト)...This is ironic, because Germans are proud of real, solid work.

Not long afterwards the electrical meters were updated, again by a trusty Handwerker.......see the white one? That's the digital one, made in China and definitely not made of Bakelite........But, says the electrician from the Stadtwerk Langen, "it only costs a tenth (of the old one) to maintain...."

Elegy for a dead meter.....🎶 (d-minor would be a good key)....."Thou art lost and gone forever, dear meter.......for all those warm moments..... you recorded for me....I will never forget thee....". デッドメーターのエレジー…(sorry, can only use katakana here...)

Thursday: "Forum" seems to be the new buzz word in architecture these days. I went with a friend to a concert in the Casals Forum, in Kronberg, just north of Frankfurt. フランクフルトのすぐ北にあるクロンベルク。

As you can see, it is still not quite ready, at least on the outside. But the inside is, and it is spectacular......内装が完成しました.

Except that I don't recommend the €20 seats behind the stage, as you only see half of the orchestra. However, that didn't diminish our fun listening to the Bridges Kammerorchester

You hear all sorts of exotic and unusual sounds from them. For they are a kind of West/East crossover group, fusing Western musical language with that of Egypt, Mongolia, name but a few. 東西の音楽. Here is conductor Bar Avni bringing the orchestra to its feet to enthusiastic applause (The Kronberg audience loosening up!). A highlight was the first performance of a 'Cello Concerto composed by the Frankfurt jazz composer Peter Klohmann, and played with astonishing brilliance by 'cellist Lázló Fenyö.

Friday: The weather app on my phone says that tomorrow will be "100%" rain. Right. Time to get out on my bike and enjoy the sun whilst it is one of my favourite spots near Langen......a quiet lake not far from Egelsbach airport......悪天候が来る前に.

Egelsbach Airport: "Parking is so stressful these days isn't it darling? Sorry I'm late for lunch.....could hardly find a spot for the old kite you know...."... (note for my non-British readers......I will gladly explain that sentence over a beer or a glass of sake sometime...)......駐車は難しい...

Train or plane......? we are all on the move.....

I enjoy a little moment as the sun goes down over the woods......静かなひととき....

lighting up this trio of oak, pine and beech...オーク, 松 , ブナ材.......

Autumn colours under foot.....ちいさい秋みつけた.......🎵.....and that strange Japanese children's song comes into my head - "Chiisaii aki mitsuketa....I've found a little piece of autumn...".

Saturday: Question: Would you be a student again? Answer: Yes, if it meant studying on this campus for the next few years........質問: もう一度学生になりますか? 回答: はい、今後数年間、このキャンパスで勉強することを意味するのであれば....😊

This is what Germany does with its former aristocratic property.........they convert it into useful music colleges. (Hello Charles, 👑, do you really need that huge Buckingham Palace? what about The "Buckingham Forum for Climate Change & Renewable Energy" could start by installing some solar panels on the roof.....).. So here we have the result: The Karlsruhe Musikhochschule, with its renovated Schloss Gottesaue.....(built by the Marquis of Baden something-or-other back in the 18thc..)

And next door, the fabulous new Wolfgang Rihm Forum......(there's that buzz word again!)

Wow. A cool concert hall.........fully equipped with state of the art stage technology and broadcasting facilities.......


There you are my dears. Another week, another post. Time for another coffee break..☕...but what is this? my biscuits now exit the package sideways.......!

Maybe the idea came from some Biscuit Manufacturing forum.......私のお気に入りのビスケット.....😂


This week's Kanji is "Aki" , which means Autumn🍁. It's one of my favourites, because it is so descriptive. On the left, the strokes show "grain" - an obvious reference to harvest. On the right the strokes show "fire". Anyone who has experienced Japan in its autumn glory will know that this season is one of the most beautiful in the calendar. 秋が大好きです❤.

...and today I had the pleasure of trying out a new brush. Part of a set given to me by kind friends for my birthday. This is like trying out a new violin will it react under pressure? how much ink will it carry......?


I send out this blog pretty randomly to whoever I think might be interested. Some of you have subscribed (if you are on your mobile then open the menu at the start), which means you get a deluxe notification via email. Thank you! Some of you though have not been receiving the notification emails. Could be they have ended up in your spam folder. If you don't want to be sent this blog, don't hesitate to tell me and I shall take you off the list (well, there is no list as such!). No problem.

この投稿を読んでいただきありがとうございます。 新しい投稿のお知らせを受け取りたい場合は、上部の購読フォームに記入してください。 ありがとう!Nigel.😊




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