29 December 2005

The Last 10 Days

Just a day after I wrote my last blog post, Jeannette and I hopped in a rental car to drive "up north" to see our friends Alex & Carolin, among other things that I will get to. We decided to rent a car instead of taking the train because there were a couple stops along the way that we wanted to make.

Weihnachtsmarkt in Limburg

We had always wanted to stop in the town Limburg ever since the first time we drove by it in 2003 and said "Hey that looks nice, we should go sometime!" It is only slightly out of the way when driving to Alex's, but quite a major headache to work into the train routes (even though the trains stop in all 3 towns, there are different major routes that service them, apparently). Anyway, we finally stopped there and it is a beautiful town. While we were checking it out, the snow started falling, and the flakes were bigger that I can ever remember seeing.

Jeannette in the Snow

After a nice lunch and a quick exploration of the town, we hopped back in the car and continued driving past the town of Montabaur, which is another place I have seen many times from the window of a train or car.

Montabaur Schloß

It is quite exciting to see this huge yellow castle on top of a hill appear out of nowhere from the corner of my eye as I drive or ride along. And it is a yellow castle. There must be some significance to that, right? So, we stopped there too. I was a bit dissapointed to find out that it is a posh hotel, and not a tourable castle with stories of knights and damsels in distress locked in the tall tower. Funny how my imagination played this castle up to be something better than it actually is. But don't get me wrong, the architecture is nice, the shade of yellow is really nice, and to be honest, better up close than it is from afar.

After the quick stop in Montabaur, we continued on towards Mönchengladbach, where Alex lives. Less than an hour away from his door, I popped a piece of chewy candy in my mouth, and something didn't seem quite right. I pulled it out of my mouth to find one of my crowns stuck into it. What a way to start a vacation, with a dental emergency.

OK, not an emergency, because it really didn't hurt. In fact, we continued to Alex's house, chatted with him for a while before we even tried to find an Apotheke to get the phone number of an emergency dentist. It turns out, there wasn't one available and we went on to dinner. Alex took us to a restaurant whose incredibly awesome food more than made up for the outrageously priced beer. (€3.50 for a 0.3l beer! That's robbery!). It had the best Thai curries that Jeannette and I have ever had in Germany. Possibly even the States. And they made it spicy, not wussed out like so many ethnic foods are here.

The next morning we visited Carolin's dentist, who repaired my crown quickly and cheaply. He even complimented my German ability, which was tempered a bit shortly after when I found out he was Dutch.

The speed was a critical factor, because we were due in Köln (Cologne to the English speakers), at least an hour's drive away, mid-morning to meet our friends from Colorado, Michelle & Trevor, on their first-ever trip to Germany.

I will talk about the rest of the trip later, until then, I will leave you with a scene from the chocolate museum in Köln...

Samples from the Chocolate Museum

(Yes, you heard that right, chocolate museum. The free samples were yummy!)


At Thursday, 05 January, 2006 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

um. ok. so see, if ok when i come visit can we please please PLEASE go to the chocolate musuem?! HOLY COW!!!! - shel


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