Friend Sevi invites me and two other amigos to her home in Birkenfeld, Germany one January weekend. Fireplace and food is promised.
Birkenfeld is teeny, but the house is sprawling and immaculate.
The white sea of walls is frequently interrupted by a spectrum of oil paints and book spines.
This is a place apart, a world unto itself.
Magic abounds here, whether in the form of glittering golden crowns —
— or German bread breakfast. Salty croissants pair best with avocado, cool sliced cucumber, and tomato-pesto tapenade.
We are at ease here. Everyone settles into their element. Morning light floods gently over crisp country air; we bask and read, stirring little.
Until the beat strikes us, of course.
Adventure out means a Trier afternoon. The sun loves us.
And we love it right back.
Dining is organic, a take on ratatouille with polenta bathed in thick, tart tomato.
Trier is pleasingly German in architecture, a breath of fresh Deutsch air away from Spanish aesthetics.
The town cathedral is appropriately, imposingly gothic.
The outing is capped by ice cream sundaes and iPhones. We deal with it.
Our hosts are as generous as they are photogenic. We can’t stop thanking them for their overwhelming kindness shown in not only opening their home to us, but tending to our every possible detailed need —
— such as smiley face crepes in the morning.
A jaunt around Birkenfeld is sleepy, chatty, and intriguing in a distinctly small-town-Germany way. Sevi insists there’s naught to be seen, but each coat of paint on wrought iron grating is new to us.
There’s a quiet retro-beauty here, old and calm, far from glamorous. To call it quaint would diminish; we find it comfortable. It’s an escape, an invitation into an unagitated life for the briefest of stays.
We have a beer, or two, because it’s Germany and we must.