During my trip to South Tirol I am spending one day on a farm and discover a new world. Late at night, I arrive at my new home for the next 24 hours, the Thalhofer in Latzfons. As it is dark, I can not recognize much, except for Nico the family's dog lying in front of the door, two friendly faces of farmer Florian and his wife Erika and my cozy bed. On the next morning the alarm is ringing at 5:45 am, waking me up to join stable work. When I enter the cowshed together with Florian I realise that I probably look just as dizzily as the cows.
After I've tried to get some milk out of the cow several times it finally works and I am happy to hand some warm milk to the cat that is already waiting for me to succeed. After I finished my work, dawn is rising and is revealing a stunning view on the surrounding mountain scenery. During a long and delicious breakfast I also meet the other family members, living at the Thalhofer. Ivan, the youngest will accompany me most of the day and assist me taking pictures with my camera. We do some gardening work together with his mother Erika, explore the farm and pick some tasty blackberries. At lunch time I am helping in the kitchen to prepare goulash and dumplings. After we had lunch together we leave for a visit on the alp. Franz, the father of Florian is waiting for us in his cabin on 2000 meter above sea level. Franz is spending the whole summer living on the alp. When entering his cabin I recognize that his watch has no minute hand, I hear a cozy fire crackling in the oven and the wind blowing through the cracks. I feel comfortable and although it is snowing a bid outside it is warm and cozy in the little house. There are several other farmers living in a cabin just like Franz, meeting up for beers, playing cards or have a talk. If you arrive in time you'll have the chance to attend 'Almabtrieb' (ceremonial driving down of cattle from the mountain pastures into the valley) or 'Törggelen' where you eat until you burst and have delicious wine on the side. During winter you can also do wintersports or go hiking with snowshoes. After returning to the farm, Erika is waiting for us with a dessert made of the berries we just picked and that is devoured by me and the kids within minutes. Just after finishing the last bite, Monika is coming to pick me up. She is working for 'roter Hahn', a parent organization for all farmers offering farmhouse holidays.
Who would like to visit South Tirol himself and is having an own blog should now attend the competition for the 1. Media Award for Blogger.
Text & pictures by Caroline Kurze