Lakshmi and family are returning home today. Huw is working this weekend and they can’t stay any longer. I get up early and go for my morning stroll. After a late breakfast, I take Lakshmi to the playroom while her parents do their last minute packing. We make our way to the station to catch the midday train. Lakshmi enjoys the train ride and the scenery it provides. After check-in, quick lunch and short stint in the play area, it is time for goodbyes. I will see them in a couple of days but still feel a twinge of sadness.
I won’t miss the disturbed sleep, the “up, up” calls by Lakshmi when she wants us to pick her up and carry her during our walks, the cries following little accidents and stubbed toes, the stubborn refusal to get in the bath, the no no’s to brushing her teeth or putting her hat on to protect her from the midday sun. But I will miss her early morning smile as she wakes up with a dazed look and her funny lines. The happy look on little Lavinia’s face when she sees her Lakshmi chechi having a laughing fit. I have a couple of days to myself and am not sure what to do with it especially if the weather forecast is to be believed.
We take the train from the airport to the centre of Munich. At Marienplatz, I check my watch and it is quarter past the hour. We’ve missed the Town Hall cuckoo clock again I thought. I thought it played every hour. We haven’t got much time to spend here. The clouds have already been gathering for the past few hours. First it was white fluffy ones, then grey tinged ones but now the greyness has spread. A short walk around and we return to the subway station. As we are about to descend, I here the music play. I call Murali back. People are all standing around but is it to see the concert that is about to play on the square or something else. The clock doesn’t seem to be moving. We wait for a little while and it suddenly comes alive. I’ve written about this before, but haven’t actually seen the dancing ‘Glockenspiel’. We watch the performance and then rush to catch our train. I look up the timings of the Glockenspiel performances and it is 11,12 and 5pm during the summer months and then even less. I had forgotten the timings but feel happy to have finally seen it.
When we get back to Schliersee it is starting to drizzle. A quick freshen up and it is time for dinner. We can’t venture too far in this thunderstorm and so opt for the nearest restaurant.
I haven’t been to this restaurant before. Last year Murali came with Prasanna and Kumar annan on the day that I went on my night walk to Spitzingsee with Horst. The impression I got was that the food wasn’t that good and so we didn’t make an attempt this time. It is a fish restaurant but the owner who is also doubled up as the waiter tells us that there is no fish. He couldn’t tell us when he would get the next supply in. I don’t fancy anything heavy and settle for two starters. The food is delicious and I’m upset that we didn’t bring the kids here. The owner is quite a friendly guy and he reminds me of my dad when he was on his best form. We share a dessert. After we pay the bill the owner gives us a glass of schnapps each to try. Mine a hazelnut one and a stronger one for Murali. A small but pleasant gesture. He tells us that the demand for fish is low and so he doesn’t stock up that often. It seems like a family run business. We will definitely come back again. Maybe even tomorrow as it’s pouring down with rain when we leave the restaurant. If it continues like this we may have no choice but regardless of that I would still like to come back.
Such a difference a day makes. Yesterday this time it was one of the warmest day and night we’ve had since arriving here and today it’s turned quite cold. The rain was just a light shower when we left the hotel but now it’s quite heavy.
It seems Lakshmi and Lavinia brought the sunshine with them and have taken it back with them. The two little rays of sunshine in my life.