… bumblegrumble …

Ach … the clothes are in the machine which is quietly rumbling away. The room is cleared, reasonably, at least one can turn around without brushing stuff from tables – as if I had tables here – or move without raising plumes of dust. Things necessary are bought, even some unnecessary stuff, no need to go out then. Dishes washed, kitchen surfaces cleared, oh what a difference this makes ; bottles brought out.
Some things dealt with via computer, so even the desk appears to be less cramped, less paper.
Time to do something serious, like write this damn article. “… you’ll feel even better once you’ve got your article done …”, as IDV remarks absolutely aptly in the comments to the previous post, because only afterwards I can turn to the flotsam & jetsam. Good to learn btw that IDV’s blog is now reachable again, seemingly he has sorted his French troubles out.
“Write an article” – pfff, sounds a bit pompous, doesn’t it ?!
It’s just a very small scribble about a place here in the village. Promised the terrible text months ago to the friendly lady who runs this historical working group (“Arbeitskreis”) that prepares some notes about the must-see-attractions of the village. All in connection with the “Landesgartenschau” that will be held in the neighbouring “city”, and from what the adjacent villages wish to benefit in the form of visitors, tourists etc. This leads to general cleaning and brushing-up, planting of trees, revamping of garden benches, the demarcating of foot trails for avid wanderers including signs so that they don’t get lost in the Franconian wilderness. And when they stand at attractive points of interest they can point their smart phones on a sign with one of these squares that have a special name I forgot, get an internet connection and a smart voice (sometimes mine) explains what the wanderer sees – for example the “Roman Bridge“. Or tells what there is to know about the fountains – I happily got rid of this assignment – or the church, the library, you get the idea.
And I am stuck with the most unrewarding topic imaginable, even worse than the cemetery : Ein Schießplatz ! A military shooting range. Good GOd … I have a problem.
I can not think of one way to make this thing “attractive”. Especially because it is not used now for some years – the visitors will stand in front of a carefully closed metal gate decorated with a bit of rusty barbed wire – of the Nato kind with razor-blades, not the original German one.
The adjacent nice city on the banks of the river Main is today advertising itself with “Baroque” and “wine” – both things are fitting. But the city always had a military side too – remember that the most eye-catching building when you approach the town, is after all a fortress sitting on a hill over the civilian settlement. Through the nineteenth century, as Bavarian town, there was a garrison. And of course the military built-up in the 1930s did not pass the baroque beauty : New barracks, a large new military hospital, some bunkers were built in the area of the city – and a shooting range for small arms, Handfeuerwaffen (weapons you shoot while you hold them in your hands, like pistols and rifles, single action, half-automated, fully automated) was constructed on the Eastern area of this village.
On the Western side was an artillery shooting range that ignored the village’s borders. Now and then the cannoneers missed their targets and fired their grenades into the villagers’ gardens, GOd they had to learn somewhere, n’est-pas ?
The Schießplatz was used by the German Wehrmacht (“Where the fascist forces learnt their trade”- ?) until the end of the Wehrmacht. The place was put in use again by the Bundeswehr sometimes in the late fifties (I think) and at some (unknown) point taken over by the American Forces, until they relocated, reduced their forces and military bases in the whole of Germany and Middle Europe and regrouped worldwide. Then the Schießplatz was handed back via the German Federal State to the community, the village I live in – and since this day the village wonders what to do with that installation : Mountain bike fun arena ? Airsoft-blamm-splatter arena ? Just ignore and let it become a habitat for what-ever-wants-to-live-there ? No clue at all. Accepted all round is only that the public coffers are empty and that private housing is out of question.
And what do I tell the happy wanderers ? Ach …

11 thoughts on “… bumblegrumble …

  1. Before I finished reading this post, I thought: Ah, Mago. You’re procrastinating (although, well done with the cleaning and sorting etc.). Any excuse not to write that article… And then I finished reading and discovered that you’ve pretty much written it! I would think visitors would be amused to hear about errant grenades/shells,cannon-balls and whatnot landing in vilagers’ gardens?

  2. All scribbled together, I will speak it and send the audio-file and the text to the lovely lady for criticism. Now only the cleaning and the cellar are left.
    And yes LẌ, it’s QR Code. At least it was explained to me at the start of the whole thing that it would work this way.
    Nun auf zu neuen Ufern !

  3. Cars always on topic, LẌ.
    I once heard, but have no clue whether it is correct, that some head honchos of BMW were taking part in an oldtimer rally. When a 507 came around the corner, people said something like “yeah, once even bmw built elegant cars”. As a result of this they produced the Z8.

  4. IDV & LX are correct. I think what you’ve written is a great view on the history & development of the firing range. As a visitor, I would find the history fascinating. The possibilities for the range are bountiful. I would think a paintball zone would be exciting! But a natural garden would be lovely to attract wildlife & encourage local flowers & plants. A community garden/farming plots would be an excellent use, too! Perhaps an art/sculpture garden with a snack shop would make a great spot for locals & visitors to enjoy. I’m sure with cooperation, imagination, & dedication, you can make a great contribution to your community, & working together, the local communities can turn that range into something wonderful!

  5. Hi Mago, perhaps the place can be made into a peace garden with sculptures beaten out of old weapons. I read of an artist that did his sculptures this way in Africa. Nice way to acknowledge the past but move on to better things. Tourists might like it too.

  6. Yes, definitely, a kind of Wohngemeinschaft LẌ.
    Someone let the fridge open again !

    Eroswings, your optimism is really uplifting !
    I wrote a text with some funny sideswipes, it’s recorded, and the other members may give their two cents. I have to ask our venerated village leader about the last ideas for this area.

    I would like some kind of garden there LGS – and why not sculptures dealing with the topic “weapons” and / or peace ? We have a nice try on a “Skulpturengarten”, because there are astoundingly some artists living here who work with stone. But this “garden” of sculptures became only a meadow, simply because when this was started the old shooting range was still not in the possession of the village – perhaps this could be combined.
    Thank you Eroswings & LGS – this is an idea !

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