|Short Trip to Salzburg|
December 31, 2009
December 29, 2009
December 28, 2009
The little Gremlin and his library Lonely Planet--it came in very useful!
Our last couple days with Safta were more relaxed. On Tuesday, we spent the morning doing some long-neglected chores and grocery shopping. Later, we went into town to the Residenz museum, but only had time to see the treasury. That in itself was comprehensive and well-worth seeing. We walked over to the Fairy Tale Christkindlmarkt in the Residenz courtyard and ate Greg's first roasted chestnuts (the verdict: "they're okay, but a little dry"-GG). Safta wanted a big beer and sausage so we went to the Augustiner beerhall (see picture at the end).
Left to right: The cow udder ketchup and mustard containers at the sausage stand; the crown jewels in the Residenz treasury.
Safta enjoying the big beer (it was really Greg's). Her sausage platter came later.Those were our last days of Safta's visit. In a few days, I'll be able to tell you all about our adventures in Salzburg. Happy New Year's!
December 24, 2009
The next day we actually were able to get in and see some of the church as well as another larger church, Theatinerkirche, in Odeonsplatz. Along the way, we stopped by a gallery showing amazing black and white photos from New York in the 1940's and 50's (think Breakfast at Tiffany's). We also stopped by the Alte Pinakothek, which houses the older paintings and is one of the three Pinakotheks in the area.
(and doesn't Safta kind of look like Julie Andrews here, right?)
The next day we went to Chiemsee to see Ludwig II's Versailles-wannabe Herrenchiemsee palace. Let me tell you this: they do not heat the palace in the winter and you could feel it. But the grounds were beautiful, covered with fresh powdery snow, and the inside was extravagant and a homage to the French kind, Louis XIV. Greg especially enjoyed the mammoth-size hot tub and table that could be lowered through the floor. That night we dined with Nami and Gil (aunt and uncle on the other side of the family) at an Italian restaurant.
As this post is getting quite long, I will stop here and write another post tomorrow about what we've done from Tuesday until today. Merry Christmas to those that celebrate!
December 13, 2009
They are easy to make and fairly quick, too. So if you're in need of some Christmas cookies, let me know and I'll send you the recipe. A certain German co-worker asked for it once she saw the picture. Kudos Priscilla!
Tollwood encompasses an outdoor food area packed with groups enjoying their gluehwein and other alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks; ethnic food tent with food from Thailand, India, Africa and the Middle East; indoor bazaar filled with handmade and non-handmade gifts; and a music tent. We unfortunately decided to go when it was super-crowded, a Saturday night, so the lines were long. But we eventually enjoyed some falafel and couscous, lychee juice, crepes with cinnamon and sugar, fragrant gluehwein and swing music. We even have a commemorative cup that made its way home with us. ;-)
Apparently, there is a regulatory office that authorizes the street musicians and performers in the tourist areas to do their work. They only give out something like 20 permits a day and every day a performer wants to perform, they have to go to this government office for the permit. They play for a government official and if they're deemed good enough and there are still permits left for that day, they are allowed to play. But just for that day. The next day, they have to apply again. If they do get a permit, they are supposed to display it for all to see.
In any case, I love walking down the tunnel lined with bikes (even now!) with music enveloping you, welcoming you into the shelter of the station's entryway.
This is my favorite shot because the berries look cartoon-drawn eyes and nose, and the snow top looks just like a beehive hair-do!
December 10, 2009
I've only ever seen teens and young hipsters do it. Greg and I jaywalk on a regular basis though. And we don't even have to hold hands to cross either! It's not that we don't respect the rule--we understand the purpose for those who have trouble seeing the cars or can't walk across the street quickly enough. But we're young, healthy, spry things who can make it across the street fine without a little green man showing us the way.
However, sometimes the peer pressure from the crowd is so great that I do wait at the light. That's why I think this social more isn't going away any time soon.
December 6, 2009
Here he is next to the Santas.
December 3, 2009
Today, as I watched a guy walking along the subway platform with a shrink-wrapped Christmas tree (?!?!), I had an epiphany of sorts. First, I was so glad that someone was taking something weird on the subway (but that's really another post all together). And second, lately images have stuck out in mind as though they're reminding me of daily things I should be telling the people back at home about. However, I don't think even if I was at home, I would try to describe these images out loud.
But in any case, here are my mental images of this week that I've collected for you.
- Yesterday evening, I waited for Greg at the metro station near my aunt's house and was looking at the almost full moon through the trees. Then as I looked away, I noticed a fog had thrown itself around everyone and everything near me. Cars blurred in the distance and people bundled in their coats faded in the mist. The fog by itself turned everything into a sort of fairy tale land, magical in its own way.
- I had an evil-sounding subway car driver today. It was like he was imitating the Count on Sesame Street (whatever they call it here-- I'm guessing Sesamstrasse). Eins....ha ha ha...Zwei....ha ha ha....Drei....ha ha ha. You get the picture, except with subway stop and "keep away from the door"-type comments. Wouldn't it be nice if he was some broke, has-been actor who became a subway driver and lives now for the sole enjoyment of scaring small children and yippy dogs?
- This evening, Greg had Scoots curled up in the crook of his arm, just chilling on the sofa, reading his e-mails. Scoots hasn't done that since we moved to Munich, but he used to do it at home in Aurora, CO. It's also sweet when I look over and Scoots is headbutting and giving glasses kisses to Greg (leaving his smudges on Greg's glasses like a granny leaves lipstick stains on her grandchild's cheeks) while purring nonstop.