Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Concert

The main reason that we took the trip to Germany when we did was so that Leslie and I could see a-ha together on their farewell tour "Ending On A High Note".

It was a truly wonderful experience. My pictures aren't the greatest as we were sitting up rather high, but I thought I'd share a few with you anyhow.
I was secretly a little worried that Morten Harket wouldn't sound as good live as he does on CD. I had no need to worry. He sounded great!

The concert was at the Olympic Hall in Munich. It was a nice venue with great acoustics. It would have been nice if the speakers and cords hadn't been in the way of the big screens though. Not that I'm complaining. It was my last chance to see a-ha live. No complaints from me at all.

See, even with the cords in the way Morten still looks good on the screen. Nope, not complaining at all. :o)

Most of the pictures were very dark because the lighting was low. I'm guessing that was so all the stuff they were showing the the big screens would be easier to see. But I did manage to get a couple shots with good light.

One last good-bye. They ended the show with Take On Me. But the song that got me the most was Manhattan Skyline. As an American that song hits a little different now than it did before 2001.

Friday, October 29, 2010

An Afternoon In History

We found out that in Germany most everything closes down on Sunday. However, that doesn't mean there's nothing to do. The first Sunday we were there, we spent afternoon seeing the historic city of Landshut.The historic look of the city is maintained so well do to the celebration of the Landshut Wedding every four years. In German it would be called Landshuter Hochzeit. This celebration and reenactment is to commemorate the marriage of 1475 wedding of The Duke of Landshut's son, George, to the Polish King's daughter, Hedwig Jagiellon.
From the city's center you could see Trausnitz Castle. The view was marvelous no matter what direction you turned.

All of the main section of the city is required to maintain the outer shell of the buildings so that the historic look remains. Every four years in preparation for the wedding, the buildings get a fresh coat of paint and any needed repairs.

I do not remember what this building was. There were just too many things to remember it all. It was just too beautiful not to share.

I'm sure we've all seen the cobble stone that is bricks laid in a pretty pattern. This is a much older type of cobble stone made of actual stones. It's just so beautiful. I now want all my pathways through my herb garden (the one I don't have yet) to be like this.

Now back to the castle. As I stated earlier, most everything is closed in Germany on Sunday. So when we made the trek up that steep hill to see the castle we were fully expecting to just take pictures of the outside portions. We were pleasantly surprised to find a tour available when we got to the top.

Now my husband is very tall. 6 foot 5 inches tall to be exact. The castle was built in the 13th century. The average height of a man was much shorter then than it is now. So that really makes doors short for a man of above average height today.

Here is a view of Landshut from the outer walls. The tall tower you see is St. Martin's Cathedral that I showed you in my previous post.

And here you can see the inner court yard of the castle. If my memory serves, we were told that only the Duke was allowed to ride his horse into the inner court yard.

The outer walls of a castle were usually considered a castles first and main defense. Here you can see the path way between the outer wall (on the left) and the inner wall. The inner wall provides one more layer of defense to protect the castle in case the fortifications the outer wall were breached.

Even though we weren't here for the wedding there was plenty to see and enjoy in Landshut. I'm glad that we visited on a Sunday when the shops were closed. I think if the shops had been open I would have been too distracted by them to really take in the beauty around me.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


There are two things in Germany (and probably all of Europe) that are more plentiful than beer and chocolate.....castles and cathedrals. We visited 2 cathedrals and toured 2 castles. Today we'll focus on the Cathedrals.
The first that we visited was St. Martin's church in Landshut. (More on Landshut later.) Construction on St. Martin's began in 1389 and took around 110 years to finish. St. Martin's boasts the tallest all brick tower in the world. The tower alone took 55 years to build.

The tower didn't sound like any big deal until I was standing at the base looking straight up it. That was rather dizzying.The crucifix is one of the largest and oldest in the world as well. It's completely carved from wood. It was put up in 1495, five years before the church was dedicated. The body is carved from the trunk of a lime tree.Along the outside are essentially grave stones. For a price, people can be buried in the cathedral. I didn't think to ask if there is a tomb below if there is some other place they put the bodies.

The other cathedral we visited was the Freising Cathedral. I'm sure that Leslie told me a different name for it, but I can't remember it now. The outside was not nearly as elabroate as St. Martin's, but the inside was breath taking.
I don't think any photograph could do justice to the frescoes on the ceiling. The colors and detail are amazing.
The walls are decorated just as elaborately.
Being American, I don't often think about how old the structures are in the rest of the world. To think of the age of these buildings is mind boggling. Regardless of your faith, you can't help but marvel at the art and architecture. It had to have been an amazing feat do build like this without any of the modern tools we have today.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

What a Great Trip

We finally got home yesterday morning. As great as it feels to be home, I am already missing Leslie and her family in Germany. A huge thank you goes to them for their hospitality.

We saw so much while we were there. There is way too much to share in one single blog post, so I will be putting up several over the next few days. The picture above is of my husband, Rob, in the city of Landshut. More on Landshut later. I just loved this picture and wanted to share it.

The concert, the castles, the cathedrals, the food, the much in such a short time. And there are still so many things we didn't see. We are already thinking about a return trip. But the best part still remains the time spent with good friends.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

People Watching

We are sitting at the air port right now waiting for our first flight to take off. Since I'm trying not to think about how nervous I am to fly, I have been watching the people come and go.

You can tell who is here early because they either look bored or are on their computers or otherwise engaged time consuming activities.

Then there are those who are distracted or fidgety. My best guess is that they are people like me who are trying to face their fear of flying.

My favorites are the ones waiting for someone to arrive. You see them looking here and there, checking the arrival times on the board and then looking at the gates. When the flight they are waiting for finally arrives, their faces change and they suddenly become alert staring at the gate just waiting to see whoever they are meeting.

I don't know how much time I will have to update while I'm gone, but when I return I plan to share a ton of pictures and stories with you all. Until then......Guten Tag!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

So Busy!

I haven't meant to be neglectful of my blog. It's just one more casualty of how busy I have been the last couple of weeks. For my readers, I'm very sorry. It will get better, just not right away. You see last year at this time I had lots of time to go walking and take pictures and just enjoy the fall.
This year I'm preparing to leave for Germany for 11 days. I'm quite excited about this. I'd love to be here sharing that excitement and telling you all the things I plan to do. However, I have to spend my time packing, shopping, making arrangements for the animals, and preparing our parents for the task of doing school lessons with the kids while we are gone.

So I thought I'd share a few of my favorite pictures from last fall with you.

This barn is about a mile from me and is just one of several on our road. I love old barns. Someday I may have this picture framed along with a few others I've taken.
Here we have some wild asparagus. I didn't know until last fall that it turns bright yellow like this in the fall. It's so pretty in contrast to the green field behind it.
Lastly is a seasonal road I travel often in the summer and fall. It's one of my favorite places to take fall photos. Sadly, it doesn't look like I'll be able to this year.
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