Vogelweh and Wetzel

I’ve had a heck of a time getting Internet access so while I do I want to tell you about the last two schools I visited in Germany. Thursday was spent at a very large school called Vogelweh, where I knew from the get-go I’d have a great time. Julia and her daughter Cora picked me up at the Burger king meeting place at oh-so-very-early and we set off for the base. It was another gorgeous day and I was made to feel right at home when a first grade young man walked right up to me and said , “welcome to Vogelweh.” how’s that for hospitality? The PTA (aka, Julia!) had put-up posters with fun facts about Kirby and set out boxes for kids to drop in questions for me. There were so many I couldn’t answer them all while I was there so I have to email some answers when I get back! (I haven’t forgotten, kids; I’ll do it after May 10!) The lovely PTA ladies took me out for lunch — yummy Italian. After school, Julia took me over to Ramstein base for a quick tour and coffee. In a blink of an eye, my Vogelweh visit was over — really great kids! They asked very insightful questions. But I’m still trying to figure out why they laughed so hard at that photo of me from third grade!

All of you who were fretting over whether I’d get some traditional German food, you can rest easy. Thursday night, Cleo and her friend and fellow teacher treated me to schnitzel at a very charming restaurant in Landstuhl. I even got a few minutes to shop and found two adorable wooden carvings. Kathryn got us to laughing with her stories so between the good food and good company, it was a perfect evening.

I could scarcely believe it when Friday morning arrived and I had to pack up my suitcase and prepare to leave — sniff! — chateau Cleo. Where had the time gone? My last visit was to Cleo’s school. I was so impressed — before every school day starts, the kids gather in the “cafegymatorium” to read. It was the coolest thing ever to see snaking lines of kids on the gym floor absorbed in their books. Of course, I forgot to take a photo. As usual, I gave three presentations, but also got to enjoy lunch with the Principal’s Club– a group of kids being honored for being trustworthy. One of the dads came in for lunch and it was so touching to see this six foot plus man head to toe in camo scrunched into a kid sized chair next to his teeny tiny first grade daughter. Cleo and I took a quick break after lunch to run to the Post Office to mail off the extras I’d accumulated so far. After school, Cleo took me to one last castle where we poked around and then enjoyed a glass of wine and some “pommes” before heading for the train station. . .where we encountered thousands of soccer fans and hundreds of polizi! All cleo could do was get close enough for me to hop out of her car, grab my bag and push my way through the throngs to wait for the TGV train to Paris. Whew! I made it! Now I am in Paris with Neil and enjoying it thoroughly! I promise to post photos as soon as I can!