landscape, photography, travel, world

washing away

600_1033-e_wOn our way down from Castle Neuschwanstein we took another way: through the Pöllat gulch.

The name comes from the creek flowing through the gulch. Even we were there in fall, there was much water in the creek and the waterfalls were very loud.

At first we passed a viewpoint, where we were able to see the landing pot of the creek right below the Marienbrücke.

While the first part of our path down consists of stairs, it soon became a usual tracking path. But we wondered about parents walking uphill and downhill with very small kids and even a couple with a push chair.

Later the path consists of open mesh flooring mounted directly above the creek on the side of the rock. What a strange feeling. This part of the path had metal doors on both sides to close the path during winter and / or the melting season in spring, when it is too dangerous to walk that part of the path.

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art, culture, world

out of the stollen

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this is a play on words in German.

A Stollen is the word for a tunnel in mining and also the name of this kind of cake.

The complete name is “Dresdner Christstollen”, because it’s origin is the city of Dresden in the eastern part of Germany. Nowadays this kind of fruit loaf is known in whole Germany, but not everyone likes it.

The cake is very sweet and very satiably.

You can eat it with butter at tea / coffee time in the afternoon (or whenever you want it 🙂 ). You have to eat it within a few days and keep the cut face from drying-out. So, you better save both ends and take slices from the middle for eating.

As you can see, there is a lot of sugar in it as well as butter, rosins and candied lemon and orange peel. 

Every now and then, I like one or two slices, but not too regularly.

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culture, General, history, world

December 21st

You might ask, what is so important to donate a dedicated post to that date.

Now, when December 21st is over in all of our timezones we find, the earth still exists. All the problems, mankind, animals and beauty of the nature are still in place. Nothing is gone.

When still wondering, why I write this post, I’ll tell you now, why this is that important.

The Maya were people living where we find Mexico now. They were well-known for their astronomical knowledge and their ability to build a certain type of pyramid, crowned with a temple donated their main god, the sun.

Because of their astronomical skills they were able to correctly calculate many star paths, eclipses and so on many centuries in advance. They also created calendars and picked them into stone. For an unknown reason, they disapeared someday in the 15th century (following the Gregorian calendar as used by the western countries) before the arrival of the Spanish conquestadores.

Scientists were able to find and decode the mayan calendar wondering, why this calendar ends on December 21st, 2012 (again following the Gregorian calendar). One possible reason, founded on their astronomical skills, assumed, this world might become destroyed (i.e. by a meteor) or so, so that there was no reason to continue the calendar.

But, we’re here and December 21st ist over. So, maybe, the calendar isn’t finished, because the chiseler got ill or the priest, responsible for calculation the next steps, got ill. Who knows.

So, “Good morning, world!”

art, culture, landscape, photography, travel, world

And … another lock bridge

600_1002-s_wYou know, I already posted photos taken on several bridges in different countries, where I found bridges decorated with locks. These locks are mounted by couples in love to have a proof of their love combined with the hope, their love will last forever or at least, as long as nobody is able to open the lock with the key. You know, they usually throw the keys in the river below the bridge.

I already found such bridges in Prague, Paris and several other cities (but without taking a photo).

Most of the other bridged were decorated with hundreds of lock, while there were only a few of them at this bridge. I guess, that’s because of the location of the bridge up in the hills spanning over a canyon 90m above the ground.

architecture, history, landscape, photography, travel

A view from a bridge

 600_1004-e_wCastle Neuschwanstein was built on a hill growing out of the plain. A very hard foundation. Hard for the builder, but a dream place for the owner. A castle with a wonderful view.

As I mentioned in my last post we were unlucky and had heavy fog that day. So, I’m unable to show you photos of that view.

There is a valley right next to the castle, where a wild creek goes its way down to the valley. A bridge was built to connect both sides of the valley. The bridge is called Marienbrücke (bridge of Mary) and is build from iron with wooden planks to walk on. The bridge is located 90m above the valley. Because of the fog we were not only unable to enjoy the view, but also unable to notice how high above the ground the bridge was built. Even the waterfall was hard to seen, as you can see in my photo.

Right beside the end of the bridge on the castles side sat two artists: a musician and a painter. The musician was playing a medieval instrument and the painter tried to sell his watercolor, ink or crayon paintings of the castle.

I don’t mention all the other things you can buy in one of the gift shops.

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art, culture, photo-of-the-day, world

Waiting for Christmas

600_3060_wIn Germany we have a tradition of putting up an Advent calendar for the kids (and even the grown ups).
When I was a child I got a calendar made of cardboard with 24 little doors to open and a big picture related to Christmas. The picture showed i.e. a decorated Christmas tree, a sledge with colorful wrapped parcels, apples, oranges and nuts, a Christmas crib or something like that.  Behind each little door was also a symbol related to Christmas printed on transparent paper. That’s because the calendar was supposed to be erected on a table or the windows board and maybe a candle put behind to illuminate the calendar. Unfortunately, I’m unable to show such a calendar to you, because they are uncommon now.

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Later, the Advent calendars were made of a cardboard box with 24 little pieces of chocolate inside, one for each day in December until Christmas. Christmas starts on Dec. 24th, here, and the kid get their gift on the evening of December 24th.

Some families create their own calendars, such as the one on the photo.

The other photo shows a piece of our Christmas decoration. The funny figurines are hanging on a knitted band from our kitchen ceiling.

landscape, photography, world

Through the winterly forest

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Thursday evening the weather forecast proposed a snow rotor coming eastwarts from the British channel over middle Europe, and it came. Until Friday morning the temperature dropped to – 10 degrees centigrade and we got much snow. The lowlands beside the river Rhine got about 20 cm, and here, about 60 – 70 km east, we got about 10 cm. That’s not that much, but enough to make some problem in the streets.
Here, where I live, we usually have more snow, than the people in the lowlands, ’cause we live at about 200 m over the sea, while the lowlands are onyl at about 20 m over the sea level. Surprisingly I found yesterday evening while coming back from a friends birthday party, that about 10 km east from here no snow was on the ground. Amazing.
Yesterday came no more snow, but the sun was shining very well. Even it was about -10 degrees centigrade we made a walk through the forest.
Enjoy the photos.
Today, the temperature climbed to +3 degrees centigrade and it was raining all the day. Most of the snow is gone now, but we are in danger of ice on the streets. That are very good conditions for making much problems during the night and tomorrow morning, when all the people have to go to work again.

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landscape, photo-of-the-day, photography, technic, world

What a surprise

oppressed landscape / geschundene LandschaftToday I got a registered mail containing a 64 GB SanDisk USB-Stroage. But why? The letter said, I’m one of the winners at SanDisk’s photo competition during Photokina, back in September.

I wasn’t able to remember to that competition, because it’s about 3 month  ago. Good luck, I have a wonderful email archive. so I was able not only to find the competitions subject, but also my contribution.

The subject was: extreme landscape

My contibutions title: oppressed landscape

This photo was taken in Grevenbroich, Germany by using my fish eye lens. It shows the enormous hole remaining after digging for brown coal in daylight mining.

history, landscape, travel, world

Visiting King Ludwig II

Castle Hohenschwangau
Castle Hohenschwangau

OK, not literally, but, when in Bavaria you should definitely think about visiting his castles of dreams.
Ludwig was born in 1845 and grew up in castle Hohenschwangau. Even he was a child of the 19th century and he took advantage of the technical development at his time, he dreamed of being an absolute king like the french king Luis IVX or one of the medieval kings.

He planned and build several chateaus and castles in Bavaria, but the best known is Castle Neuschwanstein, located in Schwangau, a few minutes away from the castle he grew up.

I guess, you already have seen photos of this castle. It is so wellknown, that Walt Disney chose it as the blueprint for his own Cinderella castle and the Buena Vista logo, the movie company in his business empire.

Our holiday home was about 70 km away from Schwangau, so we went one day for a visit. Even the weather forecast proposed the best weather for that day during our visit, we were quite unlucky. The castle was covered by fog.

But, have a look.

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culture, world

Let it snow!

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arrrgggg – December 1st and it started to snow (in the evening).

Who ordered the snow. The people, who ordered the snow, have to come over to remove it.

Today is also the first Advent. The four sundays before Christmas are called Advent. Usually an Advent wreath is set up and each Sunday an additional candle is enlighted. Thus, on the 4th of Advent, all 4 candles are burning.

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The (usually) red candles, the green pine or fir braches are an important part of the home decorations for christmas. There are also certain kinds of cookies during the pre-Christmas time: the Advent.