Public Transportation


We spent the weekend at one of our favorite places, Castle Elmau in Bavaria, a hotel not far from the Austrian border. The hotel is located in a quiet nature reserve, so there’s no traffic. In winter, there’s a deep silence all around, in spite of the numerous animal tracks that criss-cross the snow in the meadows and forest. I was out on a long walk down a valley path in the direction of a small lake, Ferchensee. Not a soul in sight, the air completely still. The only creature I saw was a small spider, carefully picking its way across the path, legs held high away from the snow (a snow-strolling spider is an odd sight, but you just never know what’s going to present itself).


Ferchenbach hiking path, Germany

Ferchenbach hiking path, Germany



I saw a roof appear through the trees, and as I got closer, I could see the lettering on the building – it was a small restaurant and hotel, presumably right on the lakeside. And then I noticed the bus stop sign. I was a bit surprised, since there didn’t seem to be any roads around for miles. I stood looking at the hotel, a bit stupidly I suppose to anyone inside the restaurant, and I wondered what kind of bus might stop here. There was a faint scent of food in the air, but no noise or sign of other people.

Then I heard bells, small bells. The kind farmers might put on goats where I live, or sheep so they can be found if they’ve gone astray. Tinkling bells, not the deep bells used for cows. Strange habit, I thought, to leave animals out in winter. The bells were getting louder in the winter solitude.




And, finally, it dawned on me. The winter bus was arriving at the bus stop.


Share your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s