Sunday, July 13, 2008

Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Wow. What a difference a day makes!

Well, slightly more than a day. We left Austin, Texas on Friday. It was a scorching 100 degrees. Saturday morning, we landed in Frankfurt, Germany, where it was a beautiful and breezy 72 degrees and overcast.

Today we spent the afternoon in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, the oldest fully-preserved midieval city in Germany (circa 1400). Its city wall and towers are all intact and we ate lunch in a lovely little place dating back to 1576.

All the little towns along what's called "The Romantic Road" are filled with window boxes overflowing with bright flowers and the countryside is dotted with beautiful green gardens and lush farms full of wheat and barley and corn. It's a patchwork of farms that drape across the hilly countryside.


Tonight (we're 7 hours ahead of Central time) we've just eaten dinner and are getting ready for an early night to bed. (Last night we all went to bed at 5:30 pm and slept until 5:30 am - getting over that jetlag!)

We're in Fuessen, at the foothills of the Austrian Alps, and tomorrow we will trek up the mountain to see the magnificent Neuschwanstein castle built by King Ludwig II in 1886. Unfortunately, it's going to be 50 degrees with an 80 percent chance of rain. Not ideal for mountain climbing in my book, but we've got jackets and umbrellas. It is the real-life castle after which the Disney princess castle was modeled and our daughter - 5-1/2 - is enthralled with anything to do with castles and royalty. I planned this especially for her.

Then it will be on Salzburg, Austria for 3 days, where I hope to be able to blog again some. There are some gardens on my list for our sightseeing there that I want to share with you.

Tschuss! (That's "bye" in German)

Oh - P.S. We're also here visiting all my family on my mother's side, who is first generation German and moved to the States with my father and I when I was just a baby. This is our daughter's third trip -- we brought her over for the first time when she was 6 months old, so she's a seasoned world traveler.