#weeklyreview 43/23

The alarm clock went off at 5am on Sunday. Plan was to leave at 6am for #Leuven, Belgium to visit the oldest kid at the University over there for a few days.

We eventually took off at 6:30am which I consider a success. A long drive ahead of us and me as the only driver this time. But since it was a Sunday, the Autobahn was OK. Apart of course from the Ruhrgebiet …

Eventually we arrived in Leuven at around 3pm

We booked the cheapest hotel we could get and the rooms don’t disappoint the low expectations πŸ˜‰ But the beds are OK and we really don’t use it for more than 3 nights to sleep. So why spend more? Leuven is a rather beautiful city with lots of places to kill time.

On Monday we were visiting various places in Leuven. First the university library which was burned down two times by German soldiers in world war 1 and 2. We had a good view over the city from the top of the library tower. There was an ongoing exhibition about censorship.

Then we went on to the botanical gardens where the city were just about to store all the palm trees for winter that were decorating the city.

Tuesday we took the train to Brussels and payed The Atomium the mandatory visit. Quite impressive from the outside. Inside the usual exhibits about how the place was build and renovated over the years.

After that we drove into the city center by tram to visit the chocolate story museum. That was informative and delicious.

Just around the corner was the famous Mannekin Pis which we only noticed due to a huge crowd of Asian tourists being photographed by their tour guide in front the Mannekin. While writing this review I learned that they apparently dress up the figure on a regular basis with suits. Check the link above for pictures of that.

Wednesday was rather rainy. We had our famous yellow rain jackets and no fear. But the draw back with those jackets is that all the water goes straight down to your legs. If you don’t have watertight trousers as well, you still get rather wet. I also figured out that my trusty Blundstone shoes finally got severely cracked soles and giving me wet feets in the conditions as well.

We had plans to visit the St. Peters church in the old city center. But eventually had to learn that just this month it’s closed on Wednesdays for the public πŸ™
So we ended up visiting the old town hall across the street from the church. There was an exhibition about Dieric Bouts – the cities famous painter and sculpture artist.

This was quite impressive as just on this day additional rooms of the town hall were open. There was a very kind old guide in the exhibition which gave us additional explanations in German as the electronic tour guide was only available in English.

In the evening my daughter an me went to the “Grand Cafe Industrie” (I don’t link to their page as that is apparently malware infected at the moment). One of two old but beautifully kept cafes at the place near the train station. Belgium is famous for their beers and of course I had to try one at least once during the drip.

Thursday morning we hit the road again to go back to Berlin. This time during the week, with heavy traffic expected on the Autobahn. Overall I think we were lucky that there was no real standstill for more than 2-3 Minutes. But it was quite full and basically a long chain of Trucks from the German border all the way to Berlin. It just shows that Germany completely messed up its goods transport system. Only relying on Autobahn and trucks is a rather stupid idea. Most of these trucks do long distance transports and could have easily gone on trains.

Over all this trip was quite depressing for “a German”. The Netherlands and Belgium seem to work much better than Germany. People seem more calm, friendlier and overall happier I’d say.

Friday we went off to the countryside after breakfast. Autumn has finally arrived and although rather late. Only now, at the end of October, the trees turn colourful and still got most of their leaves. Sky is grey with heavy clouds and misty rain. If you know me… than you know I like every season πŸ˜‰

#weeklyreview 42/23

Uuh… week number #42 … a geek number.

Last week I asked regarding the option to publish the weekly review already at the beginning of the week and just add to it as the week progresses. There was one feedback on this from @Sascha. He hinted that this would rather be something for


The rowing machine has a new display with a power graph. So I got challenged and finished the 30min with 7171m and 177W average output. That was about 1km more than usual 😱


Can you believe it was finally freezing in the morning in Berlin?

And because one day in the gym wasn’t enough, I hit it Tuesday again. But this time only a bit of spinning and strength training as my friend Sam was occupying the rowing machine.


Got an appointment for another COVID vaccination at a local pharmacy. They at first wondered a bit as I’m “well” below my 60s and the last vaccination was only in February this year. But eventually they agreed it makes sense as I’m the first degree care taking person of a high risk patient.

As usual, no symptoms from the vaccination for me. Knocking on wood that I keep my streak of not being sick since a decade. Ditched Corona so far. Might as well be immune or just don’t get symptoms. But I’m also careful and wearing masks again in public and during shopping etc.

In the evening I met with Michael and Sam over beers (alcohol free for me to not disturb the vaccine). We had too much fun and I guess the guests around us were slightly annoyed about us 🀷


Lots of rain. Finally. Big storm on the Baltic Sea approaching.

Kid sick and staying home. Hope she’ll be alright by Sunday as we want to go on a short trip to Belgium.


Quick trip to the countryside to deliver laundry and supplies for my wife. Spontaneous visit to the Asian restaurant in Prenzlau.

Early to bed as Sunday morning we want to hit the road to Leuven, Belgium.

#weeklyreview 41/23

I have to catch up with my review. The last one I just finished, but it was from the week before. Hope this one is going to come more in time.

Was thinking of whether it would make sense to publish the post already at the begin of the week and successively update the posting every day. Whats your opinion?

Sunday I was running with two friends in the countryside. It had rained on Saturday but Sunday was beautiful and sunny. The paths in the forest were rather wet and even had puddles. That doesn’t happen often over here as the ground is mainly sand. Water usually disappears within a few minutes regardless of how much it rained. So apparently it had rained a lot.

We left early for Berlin that day as daughter was invited to a birthday party. I dropped her off at the venue and met with my friend Leo. We had good walk in the Treptower Park. Later, in the evening I picked up the kid again and had to walk a bit as well to get to the train stations.

Over all that was a lot of steps that day

And of course I was scheduled to run with my neighbor on Monday evening. Good training and contrast to the rest of the week in home office where I usually do far too few steps.

Blast from the past

On Tuesday I finally managed to got a test environment set up to work on a script from 2014. Written by a contractor back in those days this was still running today. But finally needs to be converted to a new stack. Not only is Python 2 no longer supported on the target stack, but also many of the imported libraries must be updated.


I recorded the whole process of making myself an Orangespresso and don’t want to spare you from it πŸ˜‰

Using my trusty HARIO Travel Grinder and the Wacaco Picopresso. Yes, this takes a while. But thats my why of limiting my caffeine intake. Have only 2-3 cups a day, but focus on the quality.


On Friday evening we went for grocery shopping and it was unusually warm still. When we left the shop and got out a warm gust of air welcomed us. That very much reminded us of the times we arrived in Cape Town airport in winter. When you enter the chain of plains in Germany winter and leave into a warm summer breeze.

On Saturday we cleaned up some tomato plants from the beets. They got partially rotten and there isn’t enough sunlight in that corner of the property to get the remaining fruits red. The plants in front of the house, facing west are still going strong. They still got blossoms and the fruits eventually turn red. That is quite late into the season this year due to the global warming.

The neighbour was cutting down a handful of large fir trees. The other neighbour cut down a pine tree … somehow we must have missed the memo that it was tree cutting weekend. Eventually it was a bit annoying having the chainsaws going direct in front of our window for almost the whole day.

#weeklyreview 40/23

This was a short week. Monday was a so-called “bridge day” as Tuesday was a public holiday in Germany: the “day of German union”. Of course a lot of the main stream media only highlighted the parts where germans are not so united about. Just further supporting the split in my eyes.

Was recently discussing with a friend some Ossi/Wessi things and came to realise that we should probably just stop doing these stereotypes. It wasn’t a “Wessi” who ripped off the people in the former GDR selling them crap cars. It was an asshole. Tying certain behaviours to a geographical region isn’t helping the cause in most cases. There have been idiots and assholes with bad intentions all over the place. Trying to attribute this to their geographical upbringing is only providing them an excuse for making bad decision as a person.

On October 3rd. we celebrated our own East/West reunion (as we do every Sunday) with a swim in the lake. We take a group selfie every weekend there at the beach. This is the image from the wrong side camera πŸ˜‰

A short week also means a bit of stress doing all the laundry … had to take it back slightly wet to the countryside and hang it there again for drying.

On Saturday we had our first formal members meeting of our local village “Verein”. Agenda was to close off the formalities of board reports and also voting on the new statute to become a charitable non-profit org. That was unanimously accepted. And of course there is always a bake-off at such occasions πŸ˜‰ One of the members did some special waffles made out of potatoes and yeast dough.

After that meeting we went to Templin to attend the opening of the freshly renovated baptist church “Kirche am Wassertor“. Thats the church my parents go to and I grew up with. Over the course of the last 4 years the building underwent major refurbishment. As usual with such old buildings it turned out to be much more complicated, involved and expensive as originally anticipated. But the religious community took a joint effort and finished the project with a lot of self initiative and also monetary contributions. The result is stunning. More space, more energy efficient and more accessible.

To celebrate the occasion in the evening, there was a concert of a small band of three women from the church community. They sang songs from various artists and some of their own. It was beautiful and moving. All three of them were actually pregnant so there were 7 “humans” on the stage πŸ˜‰

#weeklyreview 39/23

This is a rather late weekly review… I blame it to the prolonged weekend.

Sometimes I take proactive text notes for my weekly review… but often times I honestly just go through my photos of the week and recap by their contents. Lets go…

Last weekend I was still recovering from the cold and thus couldn’t swim our usual round on Sundays. But I took the ol’ drone for a spin and took got pictures”.:

The rest of the week wasn’t too spectacular. There were a lot of software updates for Apple devices. The new iOS 17 came out and demanded a new charging stand for the phone. So that I can make use of the new night stand feature

The new macOS Sonoma brought new dynamic screensavers and widgets one can pin to the desktop. A feature that seems completely useless to me as I am the kind of messy person who never ever sees their desktop. There are always windows open. Lots of windows …

Looks like this was the last warm week of the year (hopefully). Our vegetable harvest is still ongoing and the tomatoes and chilis are still doing their job.

On Saturday I took my usual triangle track in the local lake. Water was still around 20ΒΊC. Hope its going to get colder the next weeks so that swimming becomes a more exclusive endeavour again πŸ˜‰

And finally some assorted bookmarks from this week: