Anna and I have been really sick with a pretty bad cold for the past two weeks and are only now starting to feel somewhat normal again. My brother Richard who had been staying with us here in Germany for the entire summer just left to go back home to upstate NY early this morning. We had a lot of fun spending time with my brother this summer: taking walks, biking, swimming, cooking and baking and he even helped me to make sauerkraut yesterday, the day before he had to go home. Our almost 80 year old neighbor who lives in the house next door, that he shares with his son and his son’s family, invited us over to make homemade sauerkraut with him. Thomas unfortunately caught the cold that Anna and I had and was too sick to go but Richard, Anna and I spent the morning cutting and slicing cabbage on a very old, handmade mandolin, seasoning it with salt, putting it into a crock and pounding it with a wooden mallet until it became soft and watery. Actually Anna watched TV and colored but Richard and I took turns slicing and pounding cabbage all morning until the 20 liter crock was almost filled and our arms and backs were tired. We had fun and learned a lot from our talented neighbor Joachim who only speaks German! and has been making sauerkraut at home for almost all of his life.