It’s been almost three years now, time well spent raising my son, traveling Europe, and enjoying the amazing food and culture that Germany has to offer. We still don’t know where we’ll be next year, and the thought of it exhilarates me. Today wasn’t about pondering about the future, rather enjoying the moment with our son — or so we thought.
Story Time — A Coffee With a View
We traveled a ways today to visit a modest theme park Landal Sonnenberg near our area. Our son had been cooped up in the house for a few days and we wanted to do something special just for him. Landal not only is very generous to military, they have a huge indoor and outdoor play area for the kids. The best-laid plans went astray as our 3-year old began to cry as we arrived. If it was the noise, the smell of food, or the audacity of his mother to remove his shoes, our child collapsed in a pile of sobbing tears — directly in front of the ball pit. The eyes of dozens of local German families followed me, as I stared helplessly at a toddler that refused to have fun.
We tried the ball pit, tears. We tried the slide, more tears, We tried the bouncy castle, mental breakdown. We tried threatening him with death-glare-laser eyes. Nothing. Nothing, but a pile of sobbing, screaming toddler chaos. After 15 minutes we had enough.. we traveled back to the car and not so kindly strapped him back in. 2 hours wasted to get here… two hours gone.
Sitting quietly in the car as we calmed down, we pulled out of the drive and started the descent down the hill, when suddenly my husband asked, “we can see what’s down this way.”
I look, it’s the swimming pool, there’s always cars taking the small road around, so I look at him and shrug. “We have time.”
The road led to another, the other lead to a forest. Through the winding pass, I start to look for a restaurant, after all we do have time to kill. A couple turns in, we notice an old sign, worn so well you can no longer see some of the letters. Gasthaus. Food.
The road followed up for a while until we saw the building — what I expected to be a small family restaurant was a massive panorama cafe called Hotel Zummerthof… where was THIS all our life?
Walking out we see the Mosel Rive laid out before us, my husband grabs the camera and starts to take shots… I stuff the shoes I was holding hostage from my son back on his feet. We all look around for an entrance and eagerly step in. I look at the waiter and smile. “Sind Sie öffnen?” I ask he looks at me as if to say.. “duh?” He gestures us out to the terrace where we were greeted with a view too stunning for words.
Sure, our son was still a handful, but now we had coffee with a view. Nothing can replace the first time he saw the Panorama, he stopped, stared and then “Wow.”
For the rest of our experience enjoying a coffee with a view, our son either chowed down on cake or stood staring at the river below.
I hope you enjoy our slice of peace, as much as we did.