This day yesterday 41 years ago, I couldn't get to school because it had snowed all night. In Franconia, unlike today, snow and frost was the shape of things until February/March but the first snow always caused a bit of havoc.
The rule was to wait at the bus stop for about 30 mins before turning back. My father had left hours earlier using one of his elaborate detours across the villages. Hazardous road conditions never stopped him. My brother stayed outside, he was still a silly little boy, and my sister had moved out only a few weeks earlier.
So when I got back home, I was almost alone. I locked myself into the sitting room. Of course, I couldn't really lock the door. But I did shut it, which was never done, and I pulled the blinds up and opened my birthday presents. OK, opening is not the correct word because presents were never wrapped. We usually got what we asked for - and if we forgot to ask for anything or if my mother was going through one of her moods when we wouldn't dare ask, we got cash. My parents generally preferred cash unless we asked for books. Books were good. My mother had a thing about buying books for her children.
Anyway, I had asked for a ton of stuff, whatever had come into my head in the past couple of months, partly because I wanted to make it real hard, like a test, and well, it was all there: the exact black suede boots as specified, the correct pair of Levi's jeans, the triple album box set of The Concert for Bangladesh, the German version of The Woodstock Craftsman's Manual, a couple of school things, pens mostly, and my mother's standards: Baumkuchenspitzen and Borkenschokolade.
Outside, it was snowing, the house was silent. I knew my mother would not be up for some time. I put on my new jeans and boots, let George Harrison be the first ever rock musician to
disgrace my parent's stereo system, with decent volume, and - eating chocolate for breakfast! - started to leaf through pages of macrame and tie dye projects.
My mother never came near me. Not a word about the door being shut, none of that you call this music? stuff. I began to feel free and grown up and ready that day. Ready to leave and lead a different life, a wild life, a life of adventure, daring, honest friendships, really loud rock music and - well, yes, macrame.