Fresh from the forest

It’d been a sun-kissed month or two until last week when we thankfully saw some rain in Marburg. Now rehydrated forests have lit up with life and plants have shot up in height. Spring is perfect for collecting salad-making materials. Below are some pictures of our latest finds, many delicious and some featuring un rein de garlic or mustard!

My main tip to anyone feeling overwhelmed is to take a break and go outside. Whether it’s for a walk, a run, a pootle or a mosey, the change of scene opens your eyes and ears and you become more aware of what’s around you. And one of the best things you can do is recognise both what you do have and what you miss. If I think about what I have to be thankful for, several things come to mind: a beautiful roof above my head; a cosy flat and even cosier bed; flat mates who have become an extension of family; new challenges as far as teaching and learning are concerned; and a hopeful spirit, although I’m missing my friends and family.

Living abroad has been a whirlwind of highs and lows, and you do learn to live with a slight homesickness that isn’t as bad as it sounds. It pushes you to contact those you miss and urges you to make a home wherever you are. Despite the last two months having been shaped by the current circumstances of social distancing and a Maskenpflicht (obligatory mask wearing), I do feel settled in Marburg and can’t quite believe I’ve lived here for seven months. Being aware of the passing of time, with its ostensible speed, is a sure-fire way to appreciate what you’ve got and to make the most of your circumstances. When you realise the things you don’t like won’t be changing overnight, you accept them as best you can.

Johannisbeere – currant (Lat. Ribes)
Platterbsen-Wicke – Spring Vetch (Lat. Vicia lathyroides)
Rotbuche – Beech (Lat. Fagus sylvatica)
Spitzwegerich – buckhorn or plantain (Lat. Plantago lanceolata)
Spitzahorn – Norway maple (Lat. Acer platanoides).
Knoblauchrauke – garlic mustard (Lat. Alliaria petiolata)
Schwefelgelber Porling – Chicken of the Woods (Lat. Laetiporus sulphureus).
A view of Marburg over the Appletree Path in Ockershausen
Enjoying the loudness of the weir in Marburg, reminiscent of Chester.

Salad from our day’s foraging


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