About Rika

You will find that I am a rather traditional girl. For example, at about the age when the picture to the left was taken I got a pendant from a dear friend of my mum which I still have and occasionally wear.

Probably that is why I have this obsession with shoes?!

I just love old stuff and I love to know how people did things in the old days. I have quite a lot of interests so that my early stages of adulthood didn't go as straight as my parents would have hoped, for the simple reason that I couldn't really decide what to do with my life.

So I took a few U-turns and got stuck from time to time, but looking back I wouldn't want to miss a thing. Every situation I got myself into taught me another lesson which I'm thriving on today. If everything would have gone absolutely straight as every parent would hope for their children, I only would have half the skills I call my own today, and I wouldn't be the person I am.

When I was in my early twenties and very depressed because I felt that I wasn't good enough to finish anything, my father in law, one of the most brilliant people I've ever known in my life, told me:

There are two types of people in the world. One are the nerds. They know one thing very very well, but the rest of life is fading into obliviousness for them. They shine because they do intelligent stuff, write papers, win academic prices and so on, they make their parents happy because they always will have a job and they don't have to worry anymore. But nerds always need a support system of people taking care of their social life and making sure that they find something to eat in the fridge.

And there are the dilettantes. They only know a little bit of everything, but nothing very well. They don't shine because they are never good enough in one thing to win a price. Nevertheless, they are holding society together. Usually you don't have to be brilliant to get something done, half the skill is good enough. So these people are flexible and they can improvise. The wide range of interests helps them bring things together and enables them to learn something new very quickly.

And then he officially declared me a 'Dilettante'.

Although this might be a bit strange way of looking at it - I loved this idea. And I still proudly admit to being a dilettante. Actually it turned out that coupling the combination nerd-dilettante is a quite promising one. His nerdy son and I had our silver anniversary in 2009 and we compliment each other in the best of ways. He can have his head in the clouds as long as he wants. As long as I keep the feet on the ground we own the world together!

And some more things about me

Little Rika
Oh, my childhood was so blessed!
I grew up in a tiny village - just 250 people - in the middle of former West Germany. A village with two churches and two pubs one of which we owned, and a village shop which we owned as well. Read more...

Birds, Bees and Flowers
I knew from rather early on where the babies are coming from. My mom was super-cool about this while my dad vanished into the background. From him I only got one piece of education in all my life. When I, age 16, wanted to go to a fun fair with my then boy friend who was a farmer’s son, I asked my mum if I could go. She probably thought: That is an easy enough thing, let’s get dad involved! Read more...

Family Life
So, I grew up in this tiny hamlet, in a huge house that was the village shop and pub. And this is the environments that shaped the lives of my parents, and hence mine. This is the story of my family life which gives the one or the other insight into how I still see certain things today. Read more...

University Years
Oh well, we are actually talking about the next 18 years or so. Told you I'm rather a failure in that respect. I took up Chemistry. Not because I wanted to be a chemist - I wasn't entirely sure what these people actually do - no, it was my best subject and I didn't know what else to do. My marks were good enough to get into it, I guess the pride to be accepted played a roll as well. Bad, bad choice - I ended the fiasco after 3 semesters. Read more...

If it didn't happen earlier - this is the moment where most people call me crazy. I just adore my animals. Read more...