I really hate “auto-renewal” or “opt out” things, particularly when it comes to the Internet. Naturally they sell the convenience, you can be assured they will charge you when the date comes, you needn’t worry yourself about dates, just make sure you have enough money in your account.
Originally, my laptop was ‘protected’ by Norton. I didn’t get a choice, by buying and logging into the laptop the software was already there, it was installed and activated. It was slow but, as far as I knew, it worked, with my computer sluggishly seeming free of major problems. A year later they had billed me, without warning – merely an email saying thank you for paying for, to my surprise, an upgraded, premium version. By allowing the computer to do all these things, I had also agreed to a great deal of stuff too. I complained, had the software removed and the amount refunded. It was a pain to go through but it is over. That was around 2 years ago now.
This year I’m with another company, Bitdefender. They had changed my status to auto-renewal as well. They, at least, are kind enough to give a months notice that the amount will be deducted. A thing I discovered though was that when you go to change this status to manual renewal, they offer you a discount. I took the discount, it was cheaper than their sign on deal. Just thought that maybe you should know that.
Today we journeyed to Jever. Jever, the area of land named after a quite famous beer, or perhaps the other way around, a chicken and an egg came first until one ran away and filed for divorce. Before that happened though a castle was built. The castle is a significant part of the town, it is even included in the skyline graphic of the area, along with a windmill, a tower and a barn.
The castle is guarded, fairly loosely, by peacocks, many of them. Luckily they are mostly distracted by other tourists who have paid to feed them, or they merely have more interesting things to focus on in their lives. Entry is easy, you walk in through big gates and are greeted with the full view of the front of the castle. It’s mostly pink. Salmon would be the colour name given by self conscious people who identify colours with gender traits.
Walking around the grounds you can appreciate the size of the construction, the interesting shapes and overall grandeur. It is a castle after all. There’s a slight hill behind the castle with several large stones collected on top. I can only imagine the sacrifices that took place in ancient times. It could even be a sundial, but that’s not as bloodied as history tends to be.
You can then choose to enter through the front door, very large. There’s also the less conventional back door that leads into a Cafe. The Cafe offers simple foods and drinks for very friendly prices. The service is very friendly, particularly for Germany.
We got to see a large amount of the inside of the castle, two very grand rooms that are awe inspiring to behold. Large portraits on the walls, a large mirror in one room, two large chandeliers in the other. The halls leading you back outside are lined with portraits as well as historic photographs and items. Some rooms are available to be viewed without allowing entrance, these are set up to resemble how they were traditionally. All very interesting.
Later we joined our friend in a small Tea House nearby. A quaint little business with antiques mostly concerning tea. Their menu even offers some types of tea with antique dialects. Our friend, Myriam, then decided to give us a brief lesson on some of the sayings and customs. Unfortunately she had to go for her weekly Football and Cake social.
Just in case somebody forgot you, remember that I didn’t! Happy Valentine’s Day, I hope you feel warm and fuzzy and appreciated for the beautiful person you are.
My plan is that I’ll pick up some flowers after my German lesson and surprise Ingrid at work for lunch. When she finishes work we’ll have a nice dinner (it’s not a big deal that I cook, mostly I cook) and then relax with some wine and cheese as dessert. Lovely.
We’ve been doing not a great deal lately*, so I haven’t written. However the weekend promised to create all kinds of adventure as we toured a little around North Germany. Saturday saw us driving a short way to Hooksiel and then walking on foot we took notes of all it has to offer: a few restaurants with various cuisines, Balkan included, a big bus stop in the centre of town and a Cafe that sells Mexican coffee near the water. We tried the coffee, very good.
Pumped full of coffee we jumped back into the car and aimed it direct for Wangerland. Yes, I know, you thought that the title was something rude, that’s your fault that your brain automatically is wired that way. Once we arrived in Wangerland we pretty much turned around in one driveway and left for Schillig. So is the lack of anything there. There’s a rather large tower next to a shed where they milk cows, that was the highlight. I guess the tower used to be some kind of defense against Dutchistanis (what we now call those people from Holland/Netherlands after having seen Denmark’s “America First” video), but I think I only want it to be that to make the place a little more interesting.
Once we got to Schillig, we noticed how empty it was too. Obviously only interesting to people during the summer. We tried to walk to the beach area but the wind was so strong and cold that after it had blown the water out of my eyes it froze against my skin.
*I can recommend watching the Television series Stranger Things and playing the board game Legends of Andor. It snowed while I was here – the last time it snowed was while we were in Colombia.