Sunday, June 15, 2008

Day 125. Sommerfest

One of the reasons why I am making this weekend visit to Frankfurt is because Chrissy and Gustav have organized a Sommerfest to celebrate (two years later) Gustav’s 50th birthday. So we spent the morning running errands, buying enough food to feed a small army, and looking anxiously at the sky. The weather forecast was for dry with some clouds, but we know how good weather forecasts are, and it looks like the Sommerfest will have to be a Regenfest.

In the morning Gustav and I went to the Kleine Markthalle, in Frankfurt, to start the day with a Gräf-Völsing sausage (the best in the world). This is a rather exclusive marketplace, where you get the best of the best in Europe: Cheeses from Switzerland and France, sausages from Germany, pasta from Italy, spices from the Middle East, olives from Greece, Wildschwein from the Black Forest, free-ranging chickens from Brest, . . . You get the idea. As I said the shopping for food was in a grand scale, and when we came out from the market we had been lightened of a few hundreds of Euros, and were each carrying five or six big sacks of groceries.

Next stop was the butcher in Dörnigsheim, where we picked up a huge order of Bratwurst, steaks, and pork chops. I had to pick up the stuff, because Gustav in his inimitable style was angry with the butcher and his staff for not acknowledging his presence when he had stopped by at 8 am. “What is Germany coming to!”

In the meantime Chrissy had been busy with even more shopping, and getting ready a very yummy pasta salad and three pans of to-die-for tiramisu. On top of that she was also the general in charge of setting up tables, benches, glasses, and plates to turn the garden into a “gemutlich Biergarten”.

We had a couple of rain squalls in the course of the day, but by the time the guests started arriving, at mid afternoon, the weather had decided to cooperate. It was chilly, so everybody had to wear a sweater, but it remained dry throughout the party. And a great party it was! Gustav “played” the barbecue like a virtuoso, sending steaming platters in an unending succession of aromas. There were many delicious salads and side-dishes to choose from, and beer and wine flowed in rivers. We also had a great game of petanc going on, and everybody had a good old time talking away. For me it was a delight to see once more many of my good German friends: Inge, Siglinde and Klaus, Aurora and Peter, Andrea and Frank, and Sylvia and her husband to name but a few.

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