So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria, God and life, teaching and gardening plus the occasional Duck


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Ladübertragen

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We had a new Mayor elected in Ramingstein this spring, which necessitated a big party and procession in the autumn. This tradition is unique to Ramingstein and dates back to the Slovenian times. A cupboard is kept in the mayors house filled with good wishes and certificates but this must be given to the new Mayor. Also the mayor has three horseshoes nailed to his feet, representing I don’t know what, and then the procession goes to the new Mayor’s house where speeches or songs are given. It all has a strict order with the coaches and  there has to be a wedding party. Not always possible so this year the Catholic Woman dressed up to represent it!  I was with the Tracthenfrauen as a bee-I can now reveal!  This is because the new Mayor is a bee keeper. We leant a song and a play and early on the Saturday morning we put on makeup and costumes and got on the float. Off to Ramingstein where all the float lined up, then to Kendlbruck where we had a long wait to do our play – the stupid song still haunts me! After our play we were given a crate of beer which we drank as we went again to Ramingstein for the final speeches and then back to Kendlebruck for a meal and a singsong and by 9.30 I was finished!

And in-between? Meeting new people, chatting, laughter  as we recognised friends in other daft costumes. An amazing day, but I just hope he gets re-elected again in five years!!!


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WPC: Cold Refraction

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-20c – does things to light!

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It’ll be here soon!

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http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_photo_challenge/refraction/


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The Farmhouse

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I’ve been really trying to get myself back into the swing of things here,despite my doubt over our future here. I must be wholehearted or it will of course fail. So, having missed all the outings of the Trachtenfrauen, I got in contact and joined them for a meeting about the coming up inaugration of our new Mayor. The ceremony is indivivual to Ramingstein, although it echoes the Tamsweg Verein(Club) inauagration, in that there will be a parade and little plays about the life of the Mayor. It will start from his house in Kendlbruck and go on foot to the Gemeinde building in Ramingstein. Apparently, something else unique is a chest which is placed in there for people to post ideas -good and bad.  The theme the group has chosen remains top secret as I write, there will be ten groups and none know what the other is doing!!!

I took off on a wet and windy night with three other ladies right up into an alm farm house in a remote part of the area. The meeting was great, I got my cossy sorted, learnt the song and enjoyed some really good zirben schapps.

This is all a long winded way into what I want to talk about!  The farm was really old, with its own Troad kasten and we were led into a hall full of boots and coats and a farmy atmosphere. We went into what must be the guest Stuberl, a large room with a Kachelofen and a table with fixed seats around it- I was itching for my camera. On the walls were photos of the family, sewn tablecloths, and the Crucifix, along with solid wooden furniture. A musical, shooting family, I could see from the shields and instruments in the room, And so much clutter, one whole cabinet filled with gifts, and knickknacks just tumbled in on each other. The room had a frieze around the edge and white walls.

It was a mix of old and new, traditional and modern and a living family, just what I would expect from a modern farming family. Having only ever been in the farm museums, it was a real insight. Outside was a bit too tidy for an old farm -the yard outside was grassed rather than mud and the buildings all mended and looked after. I was also a bit jealous. But here am I after seven years here, still being amazed at my experiences, as an outside and it always being a bit new -hope it lasts. What also strong me was the longevetity, the family living there all their lives, the constancy, and to me I feel that so restrictive- all that time in one place, not for me!

And it was a bizarre time, here was I in an old farmhouse half way up a mountain in the pouring rain, sipping schnapps and singing songs and dancing with twenty odd women dressed in various stages of costumes as…..tell you later!

 


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WPC: Dreamy autumn in Lungau

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We’re enjoying an Indian summer here in the Lungau, with blue skies and lovely warmth after a long, cool and utterly damp September. Everything is dreamy and warm in the late afternoon. The whole valley at this time of the year entrances me.

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This old leather apple tree has just a few golden orbs this year.

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There has been a glut of plums and on the tree in the orchard I found these dreamy butterflies feasting on the windfalls.

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Well, I suspect they were a little tipsy!

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http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_photo_challenge/dreamy/

 


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God TV – moral failure

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We were really surprised when we heard that Rory Alec had stepped down as CEO. Dave and I have our disagreements with some of God TVs fundraising, not trusting some of the people they trust and haven’t given so much lately. In fact their last appeal had a huge shortfall- we didn’t like the idea of buying bricks and putting a Bible under the altar – that’s daft and non biblical.  But this explains why there was a blockage. God expects a lot more from his people in key roles, and such sin would block things spiritually.

HOWEVER!  Rory is just a man and maybe they had all forgotten this and were so super spiritual that they thought themselves immune from attack. So what now? Forgiveness, repentance and Rory needs to at some stage, when he has sorted himself with God and his wife, to be brought back into the fold. What a chance to show the love of God and how repentance and forgiveness works. Or perhaps  Rory doesn’t want to give it up, and she doesn’t want him back. Human, weak and fallible,  God uses the weak of the world. What a chance for great things to come from this.


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Helicopters

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Ok, so these are leaves, but………..

This morning while I was putting the washing out, I could hear something hitting the roof of the house next door, couldn’t see anything, then one hit me. It  was a sycamore seed, being blown by the wind, hurtling across the gardens and then spinning to its new home- we have little sycamore trees always sprouting in the flowerbeds.  Incredible as they spin like s designed toy.

This had me pondering – so much for evolution. Such a thing either doesn’t work or does. If it doesn’t the seeds fall in a heap and are unable to germinate in the shade of the tree. The tree doesn’t think to itself, I’ll send them further, oh yes, I’ll make a spinning seed that can fly in the wind, in a design that even a few hundred years ago we couldn’t create or replicate to fly. Don’t tell me the shape of the seeds gradually changed over time – the trees would have died out. No, the seeds were designed, by an intelligent being, who created the whole universe and within it a complex biological system that intertwines. So you Evolutionists, just look at a sycamore seed and wonder.


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Harvest time

P1280311Today, the 24th September, we had our first frost. It’s been such a damp summer that my geraniums are already in the greenhouse drying out ready for the cellar and winter. The Dahlias copped it, but that was expected.

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Today I put the last of the produce in the cellar, sweet pickle, yet another attempt to be Branston for sandwiches, never got it right yet. It all feels like the seasons of mists and mellow fruitfulness poem written in my home city of Winchester.

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Despite the cool, very wet summer, the majority of plants have run amok, and we’ve now got a freezer full of peas, broad beans, runner beans, parsnips, sweetcorn and carrots.  In the cellar are, strawberry, peach and blackcurrant jam, the aforesaid pickle, pickled carrots and cucumbers, a couple of marrows, onions on a string.  I have Plums in wine and schnapps,  Mus or compote. In the garden are still leeks , curly kale and some rather pathetic sprouts.

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In the garage I have plum, peach and red currant wine on the go. I’ve made plum, peach, blackcurrant, Elderberry flower  and berry liquor. I’ve still two bottles of the precious Elderberry wine I made last year, and my original Elderberry and apple from last year- still not really drinkable (!).

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The elderberries this year have suffered from the lack of sun and while black, are mostly tasteless. The plums caught up ok at the last minute though, with a huge glut, I think I’ve been given about 20 kilos!   BUT not a single ripe tomato, they’ve gone green into the chutney. Aubergines  were munched by something in the greenhouse. What  a year!

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I even found some Japanese anemones in a garden centre in Karnten, hope they they survive the winter, they will be well wrapped up!   I’ve been searching for them for ages. Such lovely late colour.

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We’ve finally got the pavillion for the garden and removed the old tree stump that was in the way.

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On Sunday, I was at harvest festival with the Trachtenfrauen, and sat in the church, I could give a real thanks to God for his fruitfulness, and it came to me, the stupidity we have in not co-operating together as Christians, under the dodgy label of dogma.

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Harvest party after the service!

The devil is chuckling at our own stupidity. When someone knows Jesus, loves him through whatever church they’re in, who are we to judge? Yup I have issues with Catholics, and I’m looking forward to a talk the local Priest is doing on that there are no differences between Catholic and Anglican could be really interesting!  But most of all, I’m so thankful for the harvest, his richness in our lives, I could feel the love around me as were in the service.  Thanks!

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