Bill and I are taking a road trip to France for Christmas. We’re bringing Arran with us, so we’ll be staying in self-catered places. My friend, Audra, lives in Nimes, and we’ll be seeing her and her family, as well as stopping in Beaune on the way there and back.
I wanted to pick up a few things on the installation at Hainerberg yesterday– stuff like supplies for wrapping Christmas presents and such, and a few groceries, since I felt like making a dessert I hadn’t had in years, a cherry cream cheese pie. So we took the Mini out of the garage and went to AAFES and the commissary. The Mini needed to be driven, since it gets less action thanks to the new car. We ran into one of Bill’s co-workers at the PX, while we were standing in line to pay. Then we picked up our stuff at the commissary, and headed into Wiesbaden for lunch.
I wasn’t in the mood to screw around as we looked for lunch. It took awhile to find a parking spot. It was impossible at our usual garage, which became “Besezt” as we were driving up and down looking for a free spot. We were successful at the next garage, at the Kurhaus. We had to park on the second floor, though, because that garage was also packed. I was a little worried that it would be hard to find a restaurant that wasn’t crowded, but I needn’t have fretted. Little Italy was wide open at about 1:30pm. Better yet, when we walked inside, were immediately recognized and warmly welcomed!
I was impressed by the waiter, who even remembered what Bill had the last time we were there. To put this into perspective, without looking it up on the blog, I don’t even know when we were last there! I guess it was a couple of months ago. Little Italy has become a favorite restaurant, though. The food never disappoints; the service is good and very friendly; and it’s not hard to get in and out of there. Here are some pictures from our lunch.
Our lunch at Little Italy was nice and leisurely. At one point, they cranked up the music by mistake, and the older Germans that were in there with us started laughing. I’ve noticed that Germans seem to enjoy quirky, slapstick humor, and people who act like fools. I think it’s because the culture here is a lot more serious and uptight than American culture is. In many ways, I like it… but I do get a kick out of what they find funny.
Arran was happy to see us when we got home. After we let him out and fed him dinner, he went to lie down in the living room. Bill went upstairs for a moment, then came back downstairs looking a little pale. He said, “For a split second, I could have sworn I saw Arran upstairs, flitting past me, but he’s down here. So now I wonder if it was Zane.”
“So you think that was Zane’s ghost?” I asked.
“Yeah.” Bill nodded. “I guess he’s going to hang around until we find a new dog.”
We usually get new dogs within a month of losing one, but it’s easier to do that in the United States. There, people don’t hold it against us that we’re Americans affiliated with the military. We also don’t travel as much or as often there. We decided to wait on getting a new dog until after our road trip to France, since we’re going to need to take time breaking it in. To be honest, as much as I want another dog, I feel a little apprehensive about the process of getting one. I guess that when the time is right, the right dog will show up.
It’s always heartbreaking to look at Facebook memories at this time of year. In December 2009, Zane joined our family as a young dog. In December 2012, MacGregor was dying of cancer. Both are gone now, and they were both wonderful dogs. I miss them… and I don’t know how another dog will fill Zane’s pawprints. But I also know that I’ve never regretted a single dog we’ve taken in, and somehow they all manage to be wonderful in their own special ways. I much prefer dogs and other animals to most people, too. Pets love you for who you are and don’t screw you over.
Bill’s mom is coming here next month, so I don’t know how much searching we will do in January. I suspect we might have a new friend in the spring… We’ll see.