June 4, 2010
We’re back! Knitting Daughter and I had a great time visiting Claudia and her family in Germany. What a treat! It is taking me a bit of time to get my head out of the jetlag clouds and back into work, so I figured I had better write this post this morning while it might still make sense.
We left on Tuesday and arrived on Wednesday morning. Claudia picked us up at the airport and took us home to catch breakfast and a few hours of sleep, before heading out to explore. Germany is GREEN all over the place. It is absolutely beautiful. Lots of rain and cool weather while we were there (which you know I like). We saw lots of fields of hops growing in Claudia’s town. Hops are used in the making of beer and you don’t see hops around here. They grow up the lines attached to the poles, and are harvested later in the summer. It’s a good industry for their town. The other thing that we saw growing all over was Spargle – which translates to Asparagus. Did you know that when the asparagus turns green, it is over-ripe and bitter? I’ve always liked asparagus, but the white asparagus that you get in Germany (before it turns over-ripe green) is so much better.
We spent the week being shuttled to and fro through the beautiful countryside by Claudia and/or Andreas. They are awesome hosts. We went to Munich a couple of days, to tour the famous Neuschwanstein Castle another day (see the photo? And to think the King lived in that castle for less than 150 days before his death). We also spent an afternoon tracking down my roots in a small village a few hours away. (Zipped down the Autobahn to get there. Not sure I’m a big fan of those fast speeds and crazy highways, but we had good drivers in Claudia and Andreas, and we lived to tell about it!) My grandparents came to the U.S. from Germany when they were in their 20′s, and it was fun to be in their town of Schnaitheim (near Heidenheim), see their old stomping grounds, and have coffee in a shop around the corner from their neighborhood. This is the photo of the schoolhouse that they attended. We found my grandpa’s house – or rather, land. The original house has been torn down and a four-family flat built in its place. It’s always sad to see that happen.
Now for the Mini Contest – where do your grandparents come from? I have a set of grandparents from Germany and a set of grandparents from here in the U.S. How about you? Leave a comment and I’ll randomly draw one winner in a week. (That’s what makes it a mini contest – just one winner. You know we usually draw a prize for every 250 or so comments in our regular monthly blog contests, but this time I have just one big skein of Wollmeise Lace to give as a prize!)
On Monday I’ll share photos of our time at the Wollmeise brick and mortar shop, as well as a photo of Claudia’s beautiful garden-filled backyard. It almost made me want to garden! (But not quite. I kept thinking of the heat and humidity that always arrives in St. Louis in July and August….)