“Ammamma, ammamma” Lakshmi cries as I try to leave. It’s too early for her to wake up. I gently tap her back to sleep. Lakshmi has had a busy day yesterday and needs to get a proper sleep.
I’m running a little late today and so decide to walk around the lake in the opposite direction to what I normally do. Once I’m on my way, my mind wanders back to yesterday. I didn’t encounter many walkers but some were not very forthcoming with their ‘guten morgans’, although most acknowledged me. I even got a frosty glare from an older man. I wonder if he thought I had the hots for him. That will teach me to smile at grumpy old men I guess. Maybe I should pick and chose who I greet next time and decide depending on their grumpiness scores. A bulldog barks and runs towards me. His owner is oblivious to what his dog is up to and is looking at some poster. He looks up and sees my startled face. He calls his dog when he realises that I am not good with dogs.
Once again after breakfast I take Lakshmi to the lake. This time we are prepared. Most of the benches in the shade are occupied. We find one last one, put our bags down and have the pretzel we bought from the cafe. An elderly couple in the next bench are leafing through their morning newspapers. When we are ready I take Lakshmi into the waters. A baby girl wants to go in the water and is dragging her daddy. She starts getting wet and one by one her clothes come off. Her dad, who is from Munich, is impressed that Lakshmi has brought her swimwear. Well experience maketh the man doesn’t it, or was it manners?
Lakshmi drops her biscuit in the sand and picks it up to eat it. I throw it to the ducks. It’s a mistake. Now they are all ganging up and walking towards us. She wants another snack, but I’m worried about taking it out. We try to shoo the ducks away and tell them to go ask their mummy and daddy for food. It doesn’t work. They circle around us for a while.
It’s time to get out of the wet clothes. Lakshmi’s dada comes and takes her to the playground. In the afternoon we take the cable car from the Valley station to Schliersbergalm. At the top of the mountain the adults decide to relax. All this walking is really thirsty work. Lakshmi plays in the playground and jumps on the trampoline. From here you can either walk down, take the cable car or go down on the toboggan. Those with a fear of heights take the easy route and Kavitha, Huw and Lakshmi take the toboggan. Lakshmi tells her dad to take the one when it comes to their turn and that she will come down in the next one. The girl has no fear of heights unlike her Ammamma who thought that the five year old’s slide at the play centre was too steep and dangerous.