«We carry our home in our heart»
Gabriela and Georg exchanged their apartment for a pitch at the camp site in Winterthur six years ago. There they dream of moving on.
«Gabriela and Georg cook good food», says the mother of the boss of the camping site and beams as she points the way to the red Mercedes Sprinter by the hedge. We are greeted by a sweet scent of cinnamon in the canopy: Georg and Gabriela have made an apple tart for our visit and are already busy with the preparations for the next visit.
A permanent home
Gabriela, who is 57 years old, works as a carer, memory coach and also chairs the Rosenberg district association, while 61-year old Georg is a qualified carpenter and now works as the project manager for a company in Bülach that manufactures carpentry tools. The camp site am Schützenweiher has been the couple’s permanent residence since 2011. During the cold winter months they cook and live in a confined space: The canopy serves as the living room with its table and sofa, while they sleep in the van, whose side door is directly connected to the canopy. «We are not very materialistic», explains Gabriela. There is therefore plenty of space for all their belongings in a couple of cupboards and on some shelves.
There are almost only campers with their place of residence in the neighbourhood during the winter months. «We mainly meet in the main building, where we shower, do our washing and clean the crockery. However, in the summer the doors open once again and life goes on outside and is spread over the whole site.» This is the second marriage for the couple who have now been married for nine years and have always been on the move a lot. They tied the knot in New Zealand – and promised each other they would never stay in one place for longer than four years. «However, we have broken that promise several times now», says Gabriela and smiles.
«The best thing about this life is that we can leave at any time, if we want to»
Always ready to leave
Nevertheless, it was more by chance that their lives became those of campers: «At the time we were living in Pontresina and bought a mobile home completely spontaneously, which we parked here. Eventually we liked it much better here than at home – so we simply stayed here». A decision they have never regretted.
«The best thing about this life is that we can leave at any time, if we want to», says Georg enthusiastically. It takes two hours to dismantle everything – the canopy is closed and the driving seats are turned round, the postcards and souvenirs are taken down from the side door of the van and the red living room wall is once again converted into a home on wheels. Unfortunately this only happens during their holidays, but when Georg has retired they both want to finally move on – probably to the Baltic Sea. «Then the travelling will finally start again», whispers Georg with a sparkle in his eyes.