Friday, November 1, 2013

The gift of company + the Wilhelma Zoo, Stuttgart, Germany

Early this morning, we willed ourselves out of bed, got dressed, ate breakfast (or in my case, imbibed coffee), and walked to the train station with our neighbors. The K family have a small son, perfectly sandwiched in age between Seb and Bruno, and have been quite possibly God's greatest gift to us here in Germany. Ben speaks a little English, just enough to help us as we bumble our way through learning German, and Caro speaks even less. She is so patient, and kind, and truly hardly notices our lack of communication skills, which constantly amazes us, and she has this completely sweet and endearing curiosity about America. What an angel she is to us! Leave it to Caro to be an encouragement when we're feeling like grasping the German language is a complete impossibility. God really does know better than us what we need, and the push that will get us out the door on tired days. He gave us this family who constantly invites us to do just about everything with them, including eating breakfast or afternoon snacks and coffee with them, exploring parts of our city, and today, taking in the sights of other cities nearby. It feels like college again, with this sweet gift of a family just down the hall, dorm style. (Sometimes, I even refer to Caro as my German Megan, which is saying a lot).

And so, true to their generous way, they invited us to visit the Wilhelma Zoo in Stuttgart with them. It was a chilly, cloudy day, but we bundled up (the boys wore tights under their pants), and embraced the adventure. The train ride was pleasant, and passed quickly due to the congenial company in our midst.

Upon arriving at the zoo, first opened as a botanical garden in 1919, I was immediately struck by the architecture, which I later learned is called Moorish Revival style (making a note to learn more about it). It was stunning and exotic, and perfectly arranged, allowing us some incredible views of the animals. We are already eager to visit again and explore the enormous, intricate greenhouse, see the kangaroos, and naturally, visit the monkeys again, definitely the biggest hit. (I can’t get these guys to quit imitating monkey screeches!)

On the way home, Bruno and David fell asleep, and the adults engaged in the most enjoyable conversation about the nuances of the German and English languages, as well as pop culture in Germany and America, which naturally included reality TV and TV series. It all ended with the men realizing, marked by jubilant laughter and dude high fives and the like, their common love of the Die Hard movies.

Goodness, so much love.

These are the faces of 3 guys that really like monkeys.

Photo by Seb 
Photo by Seb 

1 comment:

  1. I am SOOO proud of you for making this stuff happen! You are so good at reaching out to people in times when I would feel intimidated. Although I might harbor a little resentment towards German Megan, I will try to keep that to myself ;)

    P.S. your hair is so long and beautiful.