The lady across the street was born in our little village here in England, more than eighty years ago. In 1956, as newlyweds, she and her husband built the house they are still living in. I wonder what it feels like – to spend your whole life in one neighbourhood.

During the European summer of 1998, a bug spawned in my veins – beware, this bug is notoriously invasive! – internationally known as the Wanderlust Bug. My wife had a contract with Daimler-Benz Aerospace near Friedrichshaven in the south of Germany.  Although my own commitments back home in South Africa kept me from joining her for the duration of the contract, the visits to the land of Mercedes, Apfelstrüdel, Zeppelins and Wagner did leave an indelible impression.

Home away from home

To me (and my wife) it was the start of an affair with the world, a craving for more; an unquenchable yearning for foreign places, exhilarating experiences and different cultures.

Our room with a view

The offspring of the original Wanderlust Bug had found the perfect host.

That summer of 1998.

The Abby in St Gallen, Switzerland

Friedrichshaven nestles cosily between picturesque villages dotted along the German shores of Lake Constance (locally known as Der Bodensee). Germany shares this lake with Switzerland in the south and Austria to the east.

Meersburg Castle in Germany

The weather was perfect – sundrenched days, clear skies and the aroma of ripening fruit from the orchards and vineyards held promises of everlasting memories.

We found ourselves on top of the world.

Bregenz – pfänderbahn, Austria


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