Homecoming – Trier, Mosel

Vineyards in Trier

Vineyards on left side of the Mosel near Trier

I listened to Keith Urban’s “Once in a lifetime” on my i-pod when riding into Trier on the train from Koblenz. It was the first day of April.

“But you’ve never been this loved (mm hmm)”, says the forth line of the first stanza and it seemed to summarise my feelings.

I was very happy to have reached the place where I grew up.

Spring greeted me and the sun bathed the hills surrounding the old Roman city. What a perfect day, I thought; how lucky I was. And it turned out later that it should be the only ‘spring day’ during my short visit. Snow and ice should clebrate a comeback a couple of days later.

Behind me lay a wonderful train trip through the charming settlements and small towns of the Mosel river valley: Winningen, Kobern-Gondorf, Alken, Moselkern, Treis-Karden, Cochem (a long tunnel ride depriving me of any view of my beloved Mosel), Ediger-Eller (crossing the river into yet another tunnel) and into Bullay. More tunnels were to follow and we crossed into the Eifel hills leaving the river behind us. The next vineyards would re-emerge in Schweich, near Trier.

It was a glorious morning ride on the train. The Mosel river valley showed its best side and the train trip from Winningen to Bullay is the most enjoyable part. I was listening to music from Sting “Songs from the labyrinth”, a collection of songs from the 16th century. What perfect music for such an historic ride along the shores of the Mosel river.

I followed it up by listening to Alan Stivel and his Celtic Music collection and in my inner eye I could see the original settlers of the area, the Celtic Treverer working the valley and the steep vineyard slopes. This was the perfect music for a homecoming. Here and there castles and ruins thereof greeted us from the hilltops.

Spring had just arrived. Fruit trees were in flowers, apples, pears and cherries in white or a soft pinkish white, peach trees in dark pink. Nature is ready to rock; just a few more warm days and everything will be covered in soft green colours. The willow trees pushed already their sprouts. All other trees, the birches, beech and oak trees on the hills were bare.

The train went along the river through meadows and paddocks, fields and forests. Thousands of years the Mosel flowed through this landscape. River barges made their way down or uphill through the brownish water. White swans working on their nests. The sun blinded me while riding along in the train. Who would have know that these hills would mean so much to me one day?

The vineyards were well tended, immaculate, only some belated vintners were busy binding the canes to the wires or the stakes; soon the buds of the leaves would burst.

Only the dirty train windows prevented me from taking pictures.

At my mothers house a delicious lunch would wait for me (and some Two Hills Merlot of course). Homecoming, it was the second time for 2008, that I had the opportunity to come back to the town I was born in. What a joy.

Noodles and Two Hills Merlot

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