They all go to Walle

Since my Mom is on her own this weekend, I picked her up this morning and we drove out to Walle, a neighbourhood in West Bremen.

First we visited Walle cemetery where my grandma (and grandfather and great-grandparents, but I knew neither of them) is buried. Apparently, my great-grandparents lived in Walle, that’s why the family grave is at that cemetery. However, since Walle is pretty far off, we rarely get the chance to visit.

Afterwards, we drove to the nearby Waterfront mall. I got lucky and found a pair of very nice reduced black sandals with a medium heel. It’s so rare I find shoes that fit comfortably, so that I told the shop assistant who tried to sell me some anti-skid pads, “Oh, but I’m not skidding. I have weirdly shaped feet and I’m so glad I finally found some shoes that fit me.”

I also picked up What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen, because I love her books.

The Waterfront Mall has a food court, but the selection is not all that great, unless you really like sausage (because there are at least three different stalls all selling some variation of grilled sausage). Never mind that it was packed with shoppers. My Mom took one look at the lines and the packed tables and said, “I’m really not in the mood for this.” – “Never mind”, I said, “We’ll simply go somewhere else.”

As the name indicates, the Waterfront Mall is located directly in the harbour on the grounds of the defunct AG Weser shipyard. Near the mall is Speicher XI, a one-hundred-year old former warehouse (and coincidentally the longest building in Bremen), which has been converted into office space and also houses the Bremen harbour museum and an art college. I did a poetry reading at Speicher XI some time ago, so I knew that it also houses a restaurant and that’s where we went. We had bruschetta as a starter and then pasta with tomatoes, arugula and goat cheese and finally a chai latte. All in all a very nice restaurant and definitely worth a visit. Plus, there is the harbour museum right next door, which is also well worth a visit.

In the early evening, my Dad called from Greenland. Apparently, the weather there is better than here, even though Ilulissat, the city where he is, is 200 kilometers north of the Arctic circle. Apparently, there is a glacier there and icebergs near the harbour and of course the midnight sun. I told him to take photos.

In other news, the winners of the 2011 Rita and Golden Heart Awards have been announced. On the paranormal front, Unchained by the underrated Sharon Ashwood won the Rita award for best paranormal romance, Virginia Kantra won the Rita award for best novella for her contribution to the Burning Up anthology and Julie Kagawa won the Rita award for the best YA novel for The Iron King. I’m also happy about Karen Templeton and Lauren Willig winning in their respective categories, because I have always enjoyed their work.

Finally, Andrew Wheeler responds to the bestseller list article I linked to yesterday. I’m rather stunned that the article was written by Michael Dirda, because I had always taken Michael Dirda for someone who would know better than to classify Forever Amber and Peyton Place as sex books and Exodus as religious fiction.

Finally, you may have noticed that there are some changes afoot on this website. So stand by for an exciting announcement tomorrow.

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