This is me and my new Bavarian friend, Siggy ( Siegfried ) outside his village this morning. He's a bit sweaty because he's just run 14 kilometres through the countryside with my brother-in-law. I rode behind them on a bike.
Siggy is an interesting man. He told me that his family have lived in the village since 1680, which is probably when records began. He lives in there in a big house with farm buildings attached. He grows hop vines, but his main job is as the manager of a slaughter house in the town of Ingolstadt. Siggy told me that they slaughter about 20,000 cattle a year as well as pigs and sheep. He also told me that Ingolstadt was the home of the 'Illuninati'. This was a secret society of freethinkers set up in the 18th century and thought, at the time, to be behind the overthrow of governments in Europe.
Before that it was home to a renown medical school in the Renaissance and was also the where Mary Shelley's Doctor Frankenstein created his monster in her 1831 novel.
There are 3 generations living in Siggi's house - him and his wife and 2 children and his 87 year old father.
On friday we had a party to celebrate my brother-in-law's 60th birthday. The venue was a room in Siggy's house with stone floors and pillars, which had once been the cattle pen.
In the evening the room was filled with about 40 people, lots of bonhomie and good food and drink.
On Saturday morning we went back to the house at 10 o'clock to clean up. Siggi's father appeared, poured himself a beer from the barrel, got himself a helping of left over trifle and sat down in the courtyard to read his paper.
Is this the secret to longevity in Bavaria ?