Sunflower fields from the train.

Schönermark and Zichow, Germany
It is so easy to stay in the city and never leave. When I do leave, I am always amazed at how quickly the city falls away—it only takes about fifteen minutes on the train before everything looks different. These photos were taken less than an hour away from my apartment.

When I am in the country, I wonder why I don’t come more often because the landscape really reminds me of home—there are rolling farms fields and lakes and marshes. It satisfies a little part of me that doesn’t even know its aching until my feet are on the ground.

One reason I don’t do it more often is because I don’t have a car or a German driver’s license, for that matter (it’s on the list). I was picked up at the train station by my lovely hostess, who gave me a tour of her distillery and the environs, including the Zichower Schloß, which is on the market and which I fell in love with.

From the passenger seat of her car, I saw countless places I wanted to explore and photos I wanted to take. It killed me to let them go by. At times like that—and this happens all the time—I wish that I was alone, in control of stopping, starting, meandering, and switching directions. I find it difficult to find the balance between looking and exploring and giving my attention to the person I’m with. Not sure if that is a bad wish.