Monday, September 7, 2015

300 Years

I'm sitting in the train heading back to Brussels. This past week has been quite relaxing visiting with my family in my home city Karlsruhe.

This year marks the 300th anniversary of my city. Quite a young age for a place in Germany. However, they didn't want to miss out on celebrating this occasion appropriately. Thus, many events have been taken place throughout the city, but mainly evolving around the castle, which is right in the center. My older brother had the bright idea to take the family on a city tour yesterday. So we enjoyed the view from a tower on a little mountain outside town, and in the evening we attended the "Schlosslichtspiele", i. e. moving pictures projected on the facade of the castle. It was quite impressive.

At tower displaying 300 years

Nice view on the city

Going uphill by tram

Art in the city

Bizarr sculpture
A styrofoam house
Interesting view on the castle
Moving pictures on the facade

I realized that I had the privilege of living in this city ten percent of these 300 years. I'm thankful that I grew up in this particular area of town, which is a very quiet, suburban place with a lot of forest. I got to do a nostalgic tour to the two other places I used to live, i. e. the apartment where we lived until I was 11 years old, and also the small place I rented from 2002-2004, right before I moved to Brussels.

The house were I grew up - the middle window on the lower
balcony was my room

The place I rented from 2002-2004 (top floor)
And finally my parent's house (since 1983) -
the right top window is my room

So I'm not planning on coming back here before next summer. I booked my return ticket from the US only for July 2016. Now I only need to get my visa at the Consulate by Thursday, and then on Friday, I'll be heading off again. I'm first going to visit some friends in the Washington DC area, and on September 17, I'm bound to return to Uchee Pines. However, it won't be the same anymore. This past Thursday, the co-founder Dr. Agatha Thrash passed away. I was very saddened to hear this news. On the other hand I'm glad for her that she can rest now. I don't think it was a fun life for her lately, especially after those detrimental strokes she suffered last year. I'm thankful that she still recognized me last time I saw her in June. She was such a blessing to so many people. I just pray that this institute will continue florishing even without her.

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