Day 5-13 / Snow and Flood

Dear All,

first of all thank you for your kind comments, mails, whatsApps etc.

(German text here)


I am very happy that you are accompanying me virtually and that you understand that I do not always contact you directly :) By the way, I would like to write my blog once a week - just as it fits. You'll have plenty to read - so have some tea or coffee and enjoy! And so I'll take the time today to review the last days with you. A lot has happened again. My travel diary, which I write every day (by the way, it's still classic with pen and paper ;-)) has filled up by a few pages, as well as my experiences. To start with - what were the lessons learned during the last days?


1. Rain is great for exploring waterfalls, because you will get wet anyway.

2. South Tyroleans always explain a way to you, just ask yourself if you really arrive at your destination.

3. Even with 2 degrees you will get a sunburn very quickly.

4. I should know point 3 from my own experience. Hurts just as much as last time, I can tell you that now!

5. Influencers are funny people, unless you leave them on the island because they miss the departure of the ferry, they don't find that funny! Hope they got a nice photo anyway!

6. Refueling in Austria is so much cheaper than in South Tyrol - good to have your apartment at the border (Line I feel you).

7. If the traffic light jumps from red to yellow, drive immediately in Italy - yellow is the new green, otherwise it gets loud!

8. I thought I had discovered new volcanic craters in Milan - they were just potholes!

9. Why did I pack lipstick and lip gloss again? Masks 24/7 - safety first!


All in all: it remains an adventure!


As announced in the last blog, my plans changed and one day before leaving for Switzerland I had to adjust my plans because I was not allowed to enter the country. So I contacted my former colleagues and boss in Graz who were already waiting for my info when I would come to visit them. "Dear ones, I know this is quite late to tell you, but will you be there tomorrow? " - stormy spontaneity was rewarded and Team Adlmann was looking forward to my visit.

So on Sunday I enjoyed the last day with Nora in Salzburg before I went to Styria. Sunday proved to be more than rainy and the Airbnb hosts were surprised when I decided to do a trip. But I thought the weather was perfect for the Gollinger waterfall, because you get wet anyway. And so it was - definitely wet, but so I had the waterfall to myself and could capture great shots with my camera and enjoy the nature. And the best thing afterwards - a hot tea, time to read and write and edit photos! Because of all the travelling and discovering new places the days were too short to: Do nothing!

Traveling can only be as beautiful as taking the time to think about all the impressions.


Before I went to Styria I had a great breakfast talk with Nora from Airbnb - thank you again Nora for the nice days with you and for telling me about your exciting three year trip around the world and all the insights you took with you. I will definitely visit you again!


Still 400 m to go - said the navigation system, whose voice I heard more often than any other of my beloved friends and family within the last two weeks - scary. A strange feeling came over me, it is almost two years since I last turned into the courtyard entrance in Deutschfeistritz. Two years when we had a Christmas party and I was on the road with the team one last time before I started working at Heidelberg. I like to think of the time with my colleagues with whom I am in contact to this day, of the numerous concerts, tours, all our artists and the experiences I was able to gather. And even though it felt strange at first to walk up the stairs to the office, even though some of the team, some furniture and a lot of things have changed, I was taken back in as I was then. The same sayings, the same jokes, the same topics and I was suddenly right in the middle of it.


Special thanks to my former boss Sepp Adlmann - it was such a nice evening with your family. His son Phillip was especially looking forward to the reunion, played a small but nice trombone concert and painted me a great picture that I now take with me on my travels. "Thank you for being here", he whispered into my ear and then explained the world to me with his children's eyes. It is so nice to know that you are there and that I am always welcome at your place. At that time you told Sepp "I am more than reluctant to let you go as a staff member


You said once Sepp "I don't like to let you go as a co-worker, but I know how to support you and the friendship will stay". How right you were. "No matter where you are stuck in Europe, get in touch, I'll help where I can" - Thanks Sepp, it's wonderful to know and I'm looking forward to your visit next year and to showing Phillip my home country as promised!


Then I went to South Tyrol. Best weather my app promised. Great, summer, sun, sunshine - I thought. Wrong thought. I had to laugh when the temperature indicator was approaching zero and suddenly snow-covered hills welcomed me. Well, luckily I had packed my winter jacket (far down in case I needed it in November). But I have learned that adaptability wins! So out with the gloves, winter jacket and into the snow. I spent four wonderful days in South Tyrol - and wouldn't want to swap them for one degree on the temperature display. The lonely mountain chapels, the bright colors of autumn, the mystical atmosphere with fog rinds, reflections in the mountain lakes and the delicious food. Mom, Dad - your fear I could only live on pasta in Italy is unfortunately coming true - but I will survive, happy and full!

By the way, I have extended my stay here for one day because I liked it so much! You can see everything else on the photos.


Then my dream should finally come true: Venice. For a long time I wanted to visit this fascinating city. Full of anticipation I started into the city of love, longing, artists and hm I had forgotten something, oh yes: flood! Floods? Well, it was different than expected ;-) Just as I had booked the apartment, the radio announced that Venice is currently under water again. So even then I just had to laugh and thought to myself - well, let's see how far I get. My photographer colleague Stefan had informed me that the Venetians are used to the flood and that there is no problem with rubber boots. Okay, I had packed winter shoes, but sorry - I didn't have wellington boots on the radar. "Oh, there are disposable rubber boots, you can wear them over your normal shoes for a few days," said Stefan. It's exciting - the things you learn when you travel. In Venice I rented a room at Olgas` and was warmly welcomed. The center of Venice was only 10 minutes away by bus. Perfect to leave the car safely for a few days (yes, you all told me often enough that I have to take care of my car and should not leave any luggage in the car) and to explore the city on foot.

Right after arrival I packed my stuff and drove into town. WOW. I think the first hour I walked about 50 meters because I stopped every few seconds to watch the boats and the city. The sparkling water, the blue sky, the colorful houses and the gondolettas did it: I was speechless. Thank you Venice!


Normally I always have a good orientation in cities, "what does our living map say - which way is it going?" said the girls once on vacation - the "living map Laura" said in Venice: Error. Here I also lost orientation, or rather did not even try to remember the way from the beginning. I didn't have a destination either, I just left, through so many alleys, over so many bridges, in so many places and let Venice take effect on me. By the way, for families with strollers, Venice is rather inadvisable, how many cursing fathers I've seen (Jens, since you complained that you weren't mentioned on the last blog: here I was thinking about you, how you can carry Jonas all over Venice ;-) )


By the way, I looked for the flood on Friday afternoon - and couldn`t see it. "Hm, too bad about the rubber boots, I would have loved to see them" I thought, not knowing that I urgently needed them on Saturday! Because the flood always visits Venice for a few hours in the morning, depending on the position of the moon (Lorena, we learned something in Büsum;-)) And so I had the opportunity to watch the special spectacle on Saturday and Sunday. The stores and houses are all well prepared for the "common flood", let down their protective door, stack a few bags that are already stored on the side of the walls and look as if they belonged to the inventory of the building. And then life goes on, the Venetians wade through the water, the pianist in St. Mark's Square continues to play his music, and the children and tourists can hardly believe the luck of this spectacle. Amused, I listened to a conversation at the neighboring table of a cafe, which reminded me a lot of my grandmother: "So if they know that the water is coming, why do they put such long tablecloths on the tables. They look cheap on the one hand, on the other hand this is really very impractical with increasing flood level".

Oh grandma, you would agree with that right now, wouldn't you? :)


The most beautiful picture for me were the children, who raved in the water with curiosity and joy with their disposable rubber boots. "They protect you from getting wet," the salesmen said. Well, take a look at the pictures - I think the feet were the only thing that stayed dry recently. I love the photos full of lightness and had so much fun with them! Of course I also treated myself to a nice orange pair - 5 Euro - little money for dry feet which I appreciate so much. It took some effort to get over it, but it turned out that the cover held. At least on day 1! Yep, day two was wet after half an hour, about as wet as after the visit at the Gollinger waterfall. But hey, it was worth it and even though I always say - which I absolutely can't stand: Blue cheese, wet socks and spiders - it wasn't that bad after all. So let's cross the wet socks off my "what I hate list" and add something else to it, which I will think about :-)


By the way, Venice was really very empty, of course still some people in places like St. Mark's Square, but when I look at photos from past years, Venice was probably almost extinct now. During a tour through Venice I talked to the guide, who told me "Laura, that's a good question - which Venice I like more, personally the quiet present Venice, but professionally I prefer the crowded one. We all fear for our jobs". Speaking of fear for jobs, there are also the numerous influencers who also appreciate the charm of empty Venice and fight for their followers. A couple of influencers, who were already entertaining the passengers during the trip to the neighboring island of Burano, missed the departure of the ship. What remained was the waving of the passengers - and hopefully some great photos!


In Venice I had a lot of time to think about it, there was no lack of doubts. The situation is getting more tense in Italy as well and more and more news about Covid reaches me, if I am sure if I want to travel further. I have never felt so safe in times of Corona as I do here. Like all Italians I wear a mask 24/7 and meanwhile it hardly bothers me anymore. The gifts for the farewell of disinfectants were a great idea, even though there are disinfectants in every store, it is now a matter of course for me to disinfect my hands again and again. I travel almost exclusively by car, I am in apartments or hotels and hardly ever in contact with people. Even in Venice it was possible to keep a good distance. And I feel comfortable. And that's why I continue the journey. Thanks for your words Line, Lorena and Belinda <3


And probably the most important insight: I actually wanted to make this trip with a person in the past who meant a lot to me. Times change, relationships do too - and yet I spent the trip with a special person. Me, myself and I: It is important that we appreciate ourselfes and treat us with as much respect and appreciation as we do for the the people we love.


Now I am writing to you from Milan. Today I have visited my colleagues from Heidelberg, whom I only knew virtually until now. It was super exciting for me, because so far I only know our headquarters in Wiesloch. My colleagues in Wiesloch had the start of Innovation Week today and I have received some news over the last few days and I hope you all did well and the stress is now getting better. Most of the time I don`t think about work, but today my thoughts were often with you! The lunch and the guided tour with Rinaldo and Agnese were exciting and I realized once again: virtual communication is useful, no question about it. But personal exchange is worth so much more! I am grateful to have made the stop and now I enjoy the evening at the hotel.


Tomorrow I will continue to Bologna - I am curious, but I know that it will surely turn out differently than planned. And that is good!


Sunny greetings to you,


Your Laura







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