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I have decided to continue my journey along the Rhine, for now. Today it takes me from Bingen to Mainz. After that it’s Worms and then I will leave the river. It is a cold, windy and rainy day. Only later do I hear about the summer storm over Germany. You miss a lot when you are walking long distance.

As I said earlier, the route, the ‘Reiseführer’ wants to take me through forest and field, over tops and through valleys. All through rural area. There is an awful lot of rural area here.

20150721_164417The path leads through immense forests and sleepy villages with big houses. Houses that have seen multiple generations and that will see many more. To me it looks like ‘back then’ and I feel how the land draws me down, into the soil, like quicksand. It makes the going difficult, slow and tiring. Walking along the Rhine however gives me flow and space.

For them this is now, not ‘back then’. When I walk into Urmitz I hear the sound of a brass band. I can’t hear a brass band without needing to have a look. Urmitz is festive. SpielZeug Urmitz (PlayStuff) is celebrating their 60th year. The whole community is celebrating. Because they are only a small village, the neighbouring community brass bands are presenting themselves as well. The favour will be returned. There is a beer tent and the local women are selling baking produce at modest prices.

20150719_152538This activity is cut short momentarily because all these women are also the village choir. Their somewhat ethereal high voices take me back to the village where I was born.

20150719_153337The 6 person strong brass band from Skt. Sebastian honors this feastful day in their very own specific way. Everyone knows each other. The occasional stranger is invited and left alone. I only wish Father Alex could have been here.



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