between the Nakvak and the Korok: an expedition to the Torngat mountains. Hiking through the Valley of the cirques, climbing Mont d'Iberville, fishing in the Nakvak Valley, Canada, Torngat Mountains, northern Québec, trek, Nakvak, Korok, icefield, caribou trail, summit, travelogue, trip, travel, hike


Nuremberg in November

Part 9: Water

A room. A wall. A screen. I am standing there, in this room without furniture, in this room that is made of stone. I am standing there, while warm water is raining down on me from above.

The room, it almost looks like the one I had walked through in my dream, only that the signs here are easy to read. "To the spa, right side - to the exit, left side." And unlike in my dream, I know my whereabouts. Straight from the highway I came, taking the same road like I did in the morning, but driving it down in the other direction. Same but different, it felt. Same sights, different perspective, same distance, different feeling of time. They grow shorter, the ways we travelled before.

And now, Aalen. This town with a history that reaches back to historic times, that once was a border town of the Roman Empire. Back then, in the second and third century, the Limes was built - a line of demarcation, and also a security wall, made of stone, covering more then 500 kilometres in length. Parts of it are still remaining. Some of them have been found here, in Aalen, and have given the idea for this spa - built in Roman style on a small hill just outside the city, including thermal indoor and outdoor pools, and lounges for recreation.

The pools, I haven't seen them yet, they lie hidden behind the building, behind walls and doors, to be discovered step by step. Almost like a museum for the body, this spa feels, with its long walkway framed by trees, the reception hall, the corridor that leads onward, first to the changing room, then to the shower room with natural tiles.

Then the door, like a gate it opens to the inside pool that is build in the shape of a circle. Light pouring in from above, reflecting in the water. A small fountain in the centre part, like a stream it is filling the room with water voices. Ah and the water. Warm. Soft. Coming from deep within the ground, carrying the taste of life, pouring out of massage jets that are embedded in the circular shape. There aren't many people here, on this ordinary Thursday afternoon. The perfect place to take some time off, to linger in water, and in thoughts. Moving along the circle, I rest, relax, and let the water take care of the tensions my body carries.

After that, the outside is waiting - fresh air, and a majestic view. I have to get out of the water for this, though. Step on stone again. Open the glass door that leads to an outside parlour framed with stone pillars that seem to come straight from the time back then. Carried here on horse wagon. Into the water again. To my surprise, it is warmer than inside. Drifting into the water again, I breathe in the air, the view, the air, this moment.

The pool, the view, all of this is embraced in the hushed atmosphere of November, with the light already starting to dim in the afternoon, and the warm water rising in drifts of fog.

some of the moments - here

I close my eyes for a while. When I open them again, I am not sure if this day, all those moments of this day, but especially this one, haven't been a dream after all. But no. There is the sun, rolling down the horizon, just like it did in the morning. Not long, and the sky will change its colours again, and I will be on the way, driving into the sunset.

DL, 2004, Wernau

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