Here Comes the Sun

After two weeks without sun, just when the crazy was setting in, I decided to get out and make the best of the seemingly endless cold, moist, gray weather we’d been having. Armed with my winter coat (I had to dig it out of the box where it had been banished after the week of beautiful weather in April), rain boots, and umbrella I set out to get some fresh air and take some pictures. Despite the fact that I could see my breath in the air at noon in the beginning of June, it turned out to be an enjoyable day.

Munich is generally such a lively city that people commonly joke that no one here works. You can go anywhere in the middle of the day and the parks and sidewalk cafes are packed with people relaxing, catching up with friends, napping in the grass, and simply enjoying themselves. While this is one of my favorite things about the city,  the crummy weather made it feel like I had the city all to myself. Even the tourists who had been out in droves before the resurgence of winter had mostly retreated to the museums and beer halls, though I did see one lonely bike tour through the otherwise abandoned Hofgarten.

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The garden behind the former residence of the Bavarian kings is among Munich’s many beautiful green spaces. It is usually full of people (most wielding DSLRs), though on this particular day I was one of the few.

Even going into the city center, the streets were quieter than normal and the cafes might have been overly optimistic in setting up their outdoor tables.

I took this opportunity to climb the notoriously narrow stairs to the lookout deck of Alter Peter. I think there were less than ten people at the church during the hour I was there, so I didn’t have to get too intimate with anyone. I believe that one can usually see the Alps pretty clearly from this height, but the rain and clouds were in the way. Regardless, it was a nice view and one could get a sense of the calm and quiet in town even from so high (okay, it’s not really that high).

It’s a well-documented phenomenon that, given a frequency of cloudy days, Münchners feel a moral obligation to race outside the second the sun comes out and stay there until the gray skies return. But after weeks of complaining about clouds, it only takes about two days of sun before that’s too much too. I’ve even heard someone admit that sometimes nice weather is really inconvenient because he’d rather spend a day relaxing inside and that’s just not an option when it’s sunny.

I’m lucky in that I have a great balcony facing a lush courtyard so as long as I can keep the pigeons at bay, I can enjoy the weather from inside, but I’ve also embraced the past few days of sun like this:

These photos, and more, can be seen here on Flickr.

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