Friday, 27 September 2013

Meeting Cornelia

As I've said before, during my three-week trip to Europe, I met many wonderful people, who I now consider very dear friends. Some of these friends generously welcomed us into their home, even though they had never met us. Naturally, we were not sure how those visits would turn out, and were even a bit apprehensive. But all that changed rather quickly. In a very short time we felt right at home with them - like we'd known them for a long time. For that I am deeply grateful! And hope that one day I will get to return their genuine hospitality when they come to Canada.

Today's post I would like to introduce you to Cornelia. I've known her through email for a few years. If memory serves me well, she researched Hutterites online and eventually someone put her in contact with  me. Since then we've exchange many emails and pictures and have become friends.

I knew she was keen on meeting Hutterites, so a few times when my friends went to Innsbruck, where she lives, I told her about the visit, in the hopes she could arrange to meet them. However, for various reasons it never worked out - either she wasn't home at the time, or very busy with school.

I knew I wanted to meet her as much as she wanted to meet me, but because of our tight touring schedule wasn't sure if we'd be able to make it happen. Was contemplating for a while whether to even tell her I'm coming, because I also didn't want to disappoint her, should we not be able to meet. Just a few days before I left for Europe, I did send her email telling her on what day I'm going to be in Innsbruck, and asked if it would be possible to see her.

As I was sitting in Toronto, waiting for my connecting flight to Switzerland, I got an email from her mom. "Cornelia is away at school, but is coming home tomorrow night and is looking forward to meeting you." Apparently I had used an email address that she doesn't check at school, but her mom is using the same one at home. When my email arrived, the mom called Cornelia telling her about my exciting news. That is when she told her mom to reply to my message. She also provided me with a cell phone number where I could reach her, upon arriving in Innsbruck. We were going to meet at Das Goldene Dachl, right in Innsbruck.

So, the evening we arrived I tried texting and got no answer. Same thing next morning, I even tried to call. Nothing! Was thinking, "This is not happening. I'm here. I have time. But I can't reach her." And here we were already on our way to our planned meeting place. I wasn't going to give up, so I asked our tour guide, Eduard Geissler, to have a look at the number, maybe I needed to add some digit to her cell phone number. Just can't be that my trusty Black Berry was going to fail me now, right?
Eduard wasn't a Black Berry fan, (as I found out later) and also didn't know what I'd have to do to dial a European number.

However, he kindly let me use his phone. Don't even know whether it was an iphone, galaxy, or some other berry... for some this bit of info would be important, I know, no matter... I was finally able to talk with her just minutes from Das Goldene Dachl. Of course, she was very excited and begged me not to leave, she'll come right away.

She lives in the area, so came running, all out of breathe, but very grateful to find us still there. I'm so happy that we were able to pull it off and had this opportunity to get to know each other better - she's such a sweet person! She ended up staying with us the whole day, as we toured Innsbruck and various historical places in the area.

Here we are, on top of the world... I mean the Innsbruck Stadtturm.
Vielen Dank, Cornelia, dass du dir Zeit nahmst um deinen Tag mit uns zu verbringen. Es war wirklich sehr nett von dir und wir haben uns alle gefreut dich kennenlernen.
 I can't resist adding this after mentioning my Black Berry above: Eduard as he was captured making fun of my Black Berry. I wonder if I should tell him, come November Black Berry might be sold.
Did he maybe know something I didn't?
Sorry, it's so difficult to read, and I can't enlarge it. It says:
Eduard: Black Berry! Do these even exist anymore?
Linda: Poor Black Berry, even here in Europe you're not appreciated.

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