Sunday, 18 August 2013

Marburger Stricktreff and a Trip to the Country

In the morning I got up and headed to the hotel breakfast buffet for one last time. It held a fabulous array of food and was pure pleasure to partake of! The variety was astounding and the quality  magnificent. I could not resist the German bread (and even desserts even though I was supposed to be dining low carb.

Germany has fantastic cold cuts and cheeses.

And each day had something a little different as you can see.

After breakfast, it was time to head to the Dammühle for a post conference field trip and meal.

This was a genuine German beer garden country dining experience complete with beautiful setting, slow service and cranky waiters. I'll spare you the pictures of the food (which I of course have in abundance) and instead present the environs.

After the lunch it was time to eat again and meet the Marburger knitters whom I had met on Ravelry. Germany has strong privacy laws about the publication of pictures of people. If there are fewer than 6 people in the photo, one needs permission to publish it and since there were so few Marburger knitters, there was no way to take a picture that I am allowed to place on  my blog, so the only picture I can show is this one. The leader of the group treated me to the most delicious cake I think I ever had - a poppy seed cake that I still dream of. Oh my gosh it was good and I have made several efforts at recreating a low carb model since I returned and even the recreations are pretty good!

This was an exciting day, because I would meet someone I had met on line on Ravelry and go to spend  some time with her even though we had never exchanged a single word in person. What a brave person she is to take in someone she only knew from the internet and what a delightful person too. After quite an adventure in the parking garage that involved  a missing parking ticket (which was later found - but I'm not saying how much later! (wink!) and a search for a person in the automated parking garage, we got into the car and headed into the German countryside.  This is one of the things I adore about Germany - the beautiful trees and roads that lead through trees and villages.

I had never been to Hessen before and was completely enchanted by its beauty.

And it turned out I had a connection to Hessen without even realizing it. Many years ago when I worked in the library at U of H, I was responsible for exhibits in the rare book room and had done one on the immigrants to Texas sponsored by Prince Solms von Braunfels. There is a well know German town in Texas called New Braunfels and what a surprise to come around a curve and discover Old Braunfels. In my imagination it had been a bustling big German city, but it turned out to be small and extremely pretty.

Here is the gate into the Prince's burg, which the family has occupied since about 1260. The castle was destroyed in 1384 and again in 1679 and has been rebuilt and remodeled quite a bit over the years. In the picture you can see the emblem of the Solms family the rampant lion in blue and gold.

Heike was so kind and stopped at the town so I could look around a bit.

Thgis castle was stormed during the March revolution of 1848 and the rebellion was put down a month later when the prussian military retook the castle.

They also hold a Medieval Festival here called Spectaculum and this draws tourists from all around.

There is a peaceful garden that remembers the dead from wars gone by.

Here for example is the memorial to those from the area who died in the first world war.

Here is a better view of the  Tudor style building the Germans call fachwerk.

Soon it was time to leave Braunfels and continue on our way to Heike's home. On the way there were many picturesque things to look at.

Here is the Braunfels schloss as we left.

Compare it to the images from 1655!

I had a great time just looking out the window and watching the history go by.

Here is a shot of the German forest.

On our way to Heike's we encountered an enormous herd of sheep blocking the road.

And then we were there - Heike and Roland live on the mountain street and have a gorgeous yard.

Roland has spent many hours and seasons making it a perfect place to relax.

We had a delicious grilled meal and sat and enjoyed the beauty of the garden. And finally - here are my hosts! They are so kind and hospitable.

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