Monthly Archives: April 2016

5 Things

Not much to report today. I left early to drive to Frankfurt. I went to a couple of meetings in the heart of Germany’s financial capital. And then I drove home. I am told that Frankfurt is a lovely city if you really know it. I don’t really know it and I don’t think much of it so far. Continue reading

Ritter Sport

Yesterday the sun was shining. It seemed like a good idea to go for a bit of bike ride with the kids down to the Ritter Sport chocolate factory. There is a cafe there and the cycle path to get there is very pretty – running alongside a winding stream for some of the way. It’s also a good way to separate kids from their electronic devices and get them out in the fresh air – the promise of chocolate at the end of a cycle ride is irresistable. Continue reading

Optimism Blues

After watching a bit of the Masters on telly last night, I decided to get up at the crack of dawn and play a little golf myself this morning. I like this early-morning golf because there is no one else to disturb me on the course and I get back in time for breakfast. I also seem to play better when I’m my own scorer. Continue reading


463366_285157061555884_10255994_oI started my Saturday as usual – with a walk to the bakers. I had a quite a large order this morning because both our daughters had friends sleeping over. To my surprise they were all awake and sitting at the breakfast table when I got back. It was a pleasure to see them all tucking-in to fresh pretzels and rolls. And even though we had Nutella on the table, the fruit was the first thing to run out. Maybe today’s kids will reverse the obesity problem themselves after all? Continue reading


A good day at work today. Everything ran smoothly and we also spent an hour listening to a beekeeper tell us about the honey he would be producing for us this summer. To be accurate, he won’t actually be producing any honey but his 50,000 bees will be doing it for him. Through the company we are sponsoring a local beekeeper, which is why he came to visit. Continue reading


I had a meeting in Bad Tölz today, not far from Munich in deepest Bavaria at the foot of the Alps. It was an early start to beat the traffic and I had plenty of time to enjoy the drive. As the Autobahn turned South after the traffic jams around Munich the mountains came into view. The sun was still shining on the snow-capped peaks. On Sunday I had been out in shorts having a picnic with kids, so it was quite a surprise to see so much snow again. But a pleasant surprise. Continue reading


The umlaut is the word used to described the two dots you sometimes see above the letters a, o and u in German. On a German typewriter keyboard there are separate keys for all these letters with umlauts and they are considered separate letters. It’s not just a u with two dots on it, it is a “ü”. To the German ear it has a distinctly different sound to a normal u. In the IT world, before umlauts were possible, you would represent a ü as ue – so the name Müller is usually written as mueller when it is part of an e-mail address.

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Eating Out

What a pleasure it was to cycle to work without gloves today. I was never particularly sensitive to the seasons in the past. I am a staunch advocate of the “there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing” view of life. But cycling to work every day has made me appreciate the changes in the weather. First the ground drying out, then it getting warm enough to stop wearing a sweaty hat under the helmet and now no need for gloves. It’s all less important when you’re in a car with heated seats.

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Finally the weather has really taken a turn for the better. Yesterday evening was already noticeably milder and I caught the faint whiff of barbecues on the air. Today we woke up to sunshine and a proper spring day. We woke up late as we were invited to a birthday party last night.  Continue reading