|Saturday morning 5.00 a.m.. Munich, 10 degrees below zero.
10 Celsius degrees minus.. The cover from the car's chimney is frozen. One
hour runs the engine in our street, in front of our house, to warm up the
room, to free the ice and snow from the windows. With a broom I push the
snow from the roof. After one and half hour the car is ready for the road.
In Garmisch Partenkirchen the first sun baptizes the ''Kramer-Spitze'' in white golden light.
The first villages in Austria, Ehrwald, Leermoos are even colder: 14 degrees Celsius below zero. It's hard to drive. The parking places are fully frozen, everywhere ice and snow. With the ESP (electronic stability program) in the front-wheel drive the car runs marvellous.
Bus loads of young people enjoy this ski week ends. Around 30 big busses bring the adventurous youngsters with snow boards and skies.
Therefore many people line up in front of three cashpoints. I have to wait nearly an hour. Then at 11.00 a.m. I get my ticket for 28 Euro, 3 Euro less than the full day ticket. From 9.00 a.m. till 4.00 p.m. many different mountain elevators pump the sportsmen on the top.
Skiing is hard work. At noon I have to rest in the car and cook tea. To do this, I have to put off the ski shoes.. In the living area of my motor home I move without shoes. To take of f and later on again the ski shoes is hard work too. It's hard to walk in heavy ski shoes. It's even hard find out under four trousers with two shirts, sweater, woollen jacket the machin to pee.
My job in Munich is easy to do. Four days only I will work in the future. So my week ends are three days long. These week end bring new lust for life.
When I stay too long at home and in the job with reduced energy there is danger, to fall in depressive mood. Mind starts to doubt all and everything. Hurting questions are hunting me: ''For what all these efforts? Now, when my child earns money for herself, can't I let fall me deeper and deeper, until I'm down and out? Out of the rat race for money, reputation, a little bit of luxury? Can't I sell both my cars? Is it not enough, to sit at home and watch the day go by?''
On top of the hill, finally in 2040 Meters above sea level, the beauty of these mountains is not to describe! Sun warms the body. Clouds in the valley mirror the white sun with blending rays. White snow crystals flow through the air like diamond needles. Each shining snow needle dances in an abundance of light.
On the top of the hill I feel again, for what I'm still fighting for. My beard is full of ice. The ice wind hinders to drive down to the valley. The only time I drive the long way down, I rest in the car, cook water, prepare tea and sip the hot brew slowly.
Back in the sun above the clouds in the valley the body tanks warmth. After all I have to drive down. In Ehrwald a sauna bath heats up my body, afterwards a hot soup in the car does the same. The night can come. 10.00 p.m,. running engine and gas oven together warm up the car inside to 20 degrees. 12 degrees minus outside. Bed time.
Sunday, 5.a.m.: the yellow half moon shines with cold light into the windows. 18 degrees below Zero outside, eight degrees plus inside. The ventilator of the gas oven I switch on to the second gear. With this I start the engine too. Tea for breakfast and around an hour full heating the temperature inside climbs up to 14 degrees plus.
This cold Sunday I drive to the next little village: Biberwier. The same mountain I climbed up end of August last year. Today I only buy a half day ticket - till 1.00 p.m. My bones are getting older: on Valentine's day, two weeks from now, I celebrate my 57 birthday.
A ready made Chinese soup, coffee and cake give me the energy, to drive home. The traffic jam towards Munich is not yet thick. When I come home and park the car in front of our home, Mimamai comes home on her bike too. She learns this week end for her job: ''how to save life?''
I admire her discipline. So thankful I feel for all her love. In time of pain, in the dentist chair or in the ice cold chair, bringing me up in the freezing mountain morning, I hypnotize myself with a most consoling imagination: "We lay in bed. She warms my belly with her back."