Reached home at around 03:00 am from the company Christmas Party that was. Being fundamentally nocturnal, I had to check my emails and respond to them before going to sleep!
Why is this detail so important? It is because a few hours later I had to drive over to Ellerstadt where Fred lives to help him gather firewood for winter. This was a real first-time in my life that still makes me feel WOW!
I woke up at 09:30 thanks to a very disturbed sleep and completed the 45 minute drive to Ellerstadt in about 30 (no, I didn't break any rules - the freeways here have no limits and 240 kmph i.e. 150 mph is permitted). Marcel was also around, and we had a refreshing coffee at Fred's place before starting on our adventure drive to the forests around Bad Dürkheim in Fred's 4 WD pick-up - one that negotiates mud and slush in ways that never stops amazing me. After considerable driving in the Forests, we located a spot that had a few dead trees felled by a storm or by the forest department that made perfect candidates for firewood. Marcel who obviously loves the powersaw got to the task immediately. I was quite a silent spectator to this noise and initially just helped these two in loading their vehicle. After a while, curiosity took over and I did some sawing too - it was fun, I must admit.
After collecting about 1.5 tonnes of firewood, Fred invited us over to lunch at a nice forest restaurant. The salad was great and although they didn't have anything vegetarian on their menu, a bit of creativity from me got them to preparing Kartoffel Knödel with Pilz Rahm Söse (Potato Dumplings with Mushroom Cream Sauce) for me! Yummy!
After lunch, Fred had to meet a mechanic (he is incredibly good at fraternizing with people) and by the time we returned to Ellerstadt, I was running late on my appointment with Simone at Heidelberg at 17:00 hours!
Zooming back home helped - so did delaying that meet by 30 minutes.