I’m not sure how it’s possible that we haven’t been back to the Allgäu for hiking since this trip. That may need to be remedied as soon as possible if I spend much more time looking at this picture…
BV and I returned from our Norwegian adventure last week Friday, and I’m still riding high (apart from that whole “work” thing) from it. This was an absolutely incredible trip, and luckily I’ve got about 4,000 photos to flip through whenever I want to relive a piece of it. In the interest of preserving my memory, and friends/family just being able to scroll through a post rather than listen to either of us wax poetic about it for several hours, I do want to get a few posts organized on here, but no promises on when that might happen.*
In order to get my thought process flowing, and *perhaps* to whet the appetite of the lovely readers of this blog, I thought I’d start off with listing just a few of the things that made me go all heart-eyes-emoji for two straight weeks. To the list!
1. Friendly locals
Say hi to (not sure how this was spelled, but I’ll go with) Miku! This sweet pup lived at one of the places we stayed, and in between checking in on the cows and sheep, would wander past our terrace for a pet or two. Anyone who knows me knows that I lose my mind at the sight of most dogs, so nothing makes me happier than a furry friend coming around to join me for my morning coffee. But this wasn’t the only friendly local we met. Click away for the one with the best view in town…
Since one of last month’s photo post included the festival carb option, I thought today we’d look at one of the more popular protein choices. Now, who wants to split a chicken?
When visiting European castles, one doesn’t necessarily expect to see the king’s underthings hanging out to dry.
Unless of course, the castle includes an area that is set up as a stage for theatrical productions… in which case, all bets are off.
I’m not normally one for posting pictures with people in them which makes this one an exception. Normally I shy away from portrait work, but I needed exercise in getting out of my comfort zone. This was the last shot I took on a lovely summer day, in which an equally lovely friend let me take a ridiculous amount of pictures of her as we wandered through our city center. Artsy lady days are fun days. 🙂
Considering that we just got through the Pentecost holidays, I’m guessing I’ve heard about Lake Garda somewhere between one and 10,000 times in the last month. It’s an extremely popular destination for Bavarians since you can get there in less than five hours. While I would’ve loved to get there again this year, I’m consoling myself with the thought that we leave for our summer vacation in a few days…
Yesterday marked my 6-year anniversary of living in Germany. I spent the majority of the day teaching in company Zap, which was rather fitting as that was the company that I was originally hired to teach at here. Tuesdays at company Zap are full days, and usually by the time I get home I’m completely bushed. Unfortunately yesterday the workday wasn’t over, as we had a few stops to make on the way home, and when we arrived I had to get on the phone for two quick phone lessons that I’m doing as part of a multi-facet business course.
But, let’s be honest, none of that is all that exciting for such a momentous occasion as surviving yet another year among the madness of the Deutsch.
Instead, allow me to present some pictures of what’s been going on in just this last week. As I mentioned back in May, June has been pretty jam-packed. I have missed writing more often, honestly, but there’s been so much going on that I haven’t managed to settle myself down at the computer to do anything about it.
So what have I been up to? Well let’s dive into last weekend…
On Friday after I finished work, I met BV at home where he was lounging and enjoying yet another ‘bridge day.’ Since it was beautiful weather and not ungodly hot, we decided to take a long walk to the lovely biergarten on the river about eight kilometers away. While on the way there we spotted this restaurant in a small village, and thought its terrace looked rather inviting. After the biergarten and a salty pretzel or two, we got back to this village and decided our thirst needed another drink to quench it. So we stopped, had a drink, watched the birds swooping in and out of the barn across the street, and I admired the window boxes. Lush window boxes are delightful.
Then we wandered our way back home, and juuuuust so happened to come across the entrance to our village’s Kirchweih, which had just begun. And you bet your ass we stopped off to get some roasted nuts and yes, another beer. It wasn’t the plan, but we managed to turn our nice walk into an impromptu beer hike. Whoops.
The next day we slept later than planned (wonder why), frantically packed our bags, made ourselves presentable and headed off to the chapel…
My very lovely Sprachduo friend E. was marrying her fella of 12 years, and it was quite the occasion. Previously I’ve attended two German weddings, both from friends/colleagues of BV, and they were lovely. But this couple were both village mice, and the events of the day reflected that. For starters, they’re both involved in music groups, so there were several performances by various bands scattered throughout the day. His soccer and Kerwa clubs showed up during the ceremony, and sneakily erected a tiny Kerwabaum* while we were all in the church. Naturally they also brought and tapped a pony keg for the occasion.
Then everyone was off to the reception location, minus us, as we had to make a short detour to the nearest town with a store (any store) that sold shirts because guess who managed to bring two pairs of shorts for Sunday but not a shirt? That would be me. Again, whoops.
Shirt acquired, we joined everyone else at the reception location where everyone was already deep into the Sekt and another couple of kegs. Dishes of appetizers were passed around while everyone mingled and photos were done. Eventually the cake made an appearance, and after everyone snagged a slice or ten (so many cakes at German weddings!), all the men scampered off to another hotel bar up the road. This is fairly common. Sometimes the bride also gets kidnapped but not this time. They just got a little more sauced up while all the ladies organized themselves for more pictures. BV declined the additional sauce, so he even got to play photographer. Good man.
I’m currently in a phase where I actually don’t hate photos of myself, and I wanted to show off my grandma’s ring, which I can finally, somewhat miraculously, now wear. I always planned to get it resized but turns out? My fingers were just chubby.
As is typical with German weddings, we made ze all-night party, yah. When the band finally started to break down the equipment, I checked my watch and was shocked to see the time… damn near 3am. We packed it in but rumor has it that the party continued until nearly 7. I don’t know how the couple managed to appear functional at breakfast but they are troopers.
Since the wedding was in the very lovely area close to the Franconian Switzerland, we planned to do a bit of hiking on Sunday. And hike we did, picking a round tour through the area. It promised a stop on top of a nearby hill at a Hütte, which was lovely but closed. The Franconian Switzerland strikes again!
We soldiered on, around a few more villages, admiring the overflowing gardens, and hunting for anyplace that could serve us something liquid. Preferably a yeast-based beverage. Mostly, it was just Fachwerk and flowers though. It’s okay. I do love Fachwerk, regardless of how thirsty I am.
We ended up right back where we started which was good since 1) it was supposed to be a round tour and 2) that’s where the car was. Even better, there were a few restaurants open and they had cold drinks. Sunday was the day when the temperature really started to creep up and we almost knocked over the waitress in our attempts to ensure they were still serving.
The day’s tour over, it was time to head home again and prep for the week ahead. Class papers to sort, grills to be lit, all of that good stuff.
Which brings us back to Tuesday. Six years in. I can’t say that I have any wise words or deep thoughts on what it’s like to have been here for so long. There have been ups, there have been downs. That’s life. But lately, it’s been a lot more ups and I can’t say that I regret anything that has happened along the way.
I love living here. I love the life that BV and I have created for ourselves in our little Franconian nook. I love the friends that I have made here. And I love that I’m still surprised and amused by the oddities of ze Germany. Boredom kills brain cells and I need those little guys. So Prost to that.
*See Kirchweih link above for clarification on that one.
My first trip to Berlin was so hectic, so stressful, and so overwhelming, I don’t think there was any way I could have possibly imagined moving to Germany on a permanent basis. But eight years in Europe later, and just shy of six in Germany (more on that later), here we are.
If it’s hot today as it was on this day, then I am supremely jealous of my past self. Nothing feels quite like some Wisconsin lake spray on your face when the humidity is through the roof. Most Wisconsinites would probably live directly on a lake in summer, given half the chance.
On the other hand, taking a tour on the Original Wisconsin Ducks is hardly an every day occurrence. But when taking your German boyfriend to visit the tourist trap capital of the state, it’s a must. Everything is a little cheesy (WI pun intended), but it’s pretty fun either way.
What’s that? You thought that once you’ve had one pretzel, you’ve pretty much had them all?
Think again my friends, think again.
Get yourselves to the nearest fest (they’re everywhere this time of year), and bring your appetite. After all, you’ll need something to soak up all those Maß.