It is getting late. Rain is threatening. I see a “Zimmer” sign and on a whim I follow it.
Although the door opens, I sense hesitation in Frau Pöltzlbauer’s smile. She throws herself in a story about daughters in law, about 60th birthdays, about the importance of celebration. I have no time to wonder why: I have to focus on her fastpaced German. Finally I get it: no room because she is about to jump in her son’s car to go celebrate.
One detail however does not escape me: she doesn’t close her door. If I just stay here, both feet planted on the little carpet that says “Wilkomen”, if I don’t move, if I keep talking with this lovely 81 year old, the mom in her will take over. I can feel it. Thus starts a period of exchange silence exchange silence. I’m still here, haven’t moved an inch. Neither has she. Suddenly she shoves a set of house keys into my hand with a warm smile “you stay here, Zimmer 3. I come back late” and disappears.