December 28, 2009

Last Days of Safta's Visit

Sorry for the delay, but Greg and I were having planning issues. Finally, we decided to spend the next two days in Salzburg, then return to Munich for New Year's Eve, and from there, go to Verona (ITALY!!!) for a couple days. No more travel procrastination for us!

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.

On Wednesday, we took a daytrip to Regensburg with our Irish friend, Treasa, her daughters and mother-in-law. It was a mad house on the trains as people left Munich to go to their hometowns across Germany (it was the day before Christmas Eve). But we had gotten seats early so we didn't need to stand up for the whole train ride like others did.
Views of Regensburg: Cathedral and looking back on the town from the bridge
Regensburg has wonderful medieval architecture, a large cathedral and a cool bridge spanning the river... perfect for my grandmother. We spent much of our day walking around town, halfway over the bridge, walking through the cathedral and grabbing lunch at an Italian place set in a former 17th century chapel. We came home exhausted.
On Christmas Eve, we relaxed in the morning as the only thing we had to do was go to a concert at 4 pm. It was not a typical Christmas-y type concert with its three musicians: a tenor, a organist and a trumpeter. But it was a lovely nonetheless. Greg and I especially liked when the organist turned evil and took the organ to full capacity. They ended the concert with two American classics, too.

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!

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