With the last six months being physically and mentally a complete up and down and me commuting back and forth between Munich and Duesseldorf in between flights, it was no wonder that my mind and body were both running on low energy levels. Experiencing your father slowly fading away takes up all the strength of the most powerful person, this I can assure you. So thank god, Nature was not too far away to refuel and let my thoughts wander freely…
Having had grown up in this area, it was a kind of homecoming during these difficult times. Who would have thought that only one year ago, my parents had visited me down in Munich on their way towards the South with their motor home with my father having been in good shape.
And that exactly one year later, he was gone.
I have never been the kind of person turning to others when being in need. Not, because I was too proud, but because I always wanted to deal with the things myself.
But being almost the entire day each day in the hospital is a very energy-consuming thing. And to help me deal with all these strong emotion and frustration it was absolutely important for me to turn to the one place that had outlived it all: Nature.
Sometimes, when I could not sleep, I got up in the early morning hours and just took a long walk along the Rhine River. Halting here and there, sitting on a stone and watching the boats and ships go by or just follow the haze slowly disappearing as the sun finally came out of the clouds.
It is funny how every time I lose myself in the tranquility and pureness of Nature, every situation, no matter how bad it may be, seems better instantly.
And the Kaempe is truly a magical place. I remember the many bike rides we took when I was a child or the teenage bier fests we celebrated next to campfires on the weekends.
Even during these difficult moments, it helped me cheer up and forget for a moment the sorrow and pain I was feeling. Like it was trying to tell me to realize that the Circle of Life was only complete once we learn to say good-bye.
Death is something you keep pushing away from you as long as you are suddenly confronted with it. As if it was something frightening. But wandering along the path past the cherry trees in full blossom, surrounded by this sheer beauty and the enchanting scenery, made me understand that there was nothing to be afraid of.
Life may be ending at one time. But it may not be the final end. Like Nature itself. Once Winter is over, Spring picks up where it had to halt the year before.
We all have our reasons to retreat to places of worship, sovereign of wherever these are man-built or of natural composition.
But wherever it is for spiritual healing or simply to enjoy an afternoon with a favorite book in the solitude of this Reserve, the Urdenbacher Kaempe are a beautiful sightseeing destination for every visitor. Wherever you decide to explore it by foot, bike or during a hike.
And it is very easy to get there. Just take a train or the tram towards Benrath and then continue either on a bus (788, 730) or by foot through the beautiful Benrather Schlosspark towards the shoreline of the Rhine River.
And then walk as long as you urge to…