Wednesday, January 23, 2013

2nd Day In Germany

Our second day after a nice breakfast we started driving east towards Munich. It was the first weekend of Oktoberfest and luckily about two months prior I had booked a room in a town called Altomunster. Even two months prior it was the last room they had and Altomunster is all the way on the end of one of the S-Bahn lines. It took us about 2 ½ hours of driving time to get there.

It was around Lunch time when we got to the Brauereigasthof Maierbrau so we ate there. The food was great and the beer also as good since they brew some of the beer right next door in the attached Brewery building. After lunch we checked in and were told our room was on the second floor. One thing about that I want to mention is that it seems in Germany if you're told you have a first floor room they don't count the floor you entered on, so the first floor room is actually up a flight of stairs. That put our second floor room up two flights. The room was large and nice. My wife decided she was ready for a nap so I started exploring on my own.

I found the S-Bahn just two blocks away so it was very convenient for our trip to Munich the next day. I did get back into the car to find a church we could go to later that day. When I got back from the drive my wife was awake and I had to reproduce my drive and show her the church that I had found. We stopped at the Bahnhof on the way back to see what the cost would be and to get our tickets for the next day. We had trouble figuring out the ticket machine so I saw about 4 train workers over by the rail and ask if any spoke English. Luckily one did and he was very nice and came over to help us. We found out that two one day round trip tickets would actually cost more than a one day family pass. The family pass is good for up to 3 adults and 2 children (perfect for 2 to 3 adults and/or 2 children). We then parked the car back at the Gasthof and started a leisurely walk around the village stopping for a pizza for dinner. After we got back to the Gasthof we had our desert. 
We had a goodnights sleep but at 6am the church right across the square started ringing its very loud bell. I was greatly relieved when I heard the sixth ring and though I could go back to sleep, but no nothing goes as planned because as the big bell stopped a smaller bell started in for the next 5 minutes.
At Breakfast I asked the waitress what the purpose of the second bell was for and she said that there are some people that stay at the church and it was to wake them up. Did they ever hear of someone walking down the hall and yelling "WAKE UP", besides if the big bell didn't wake them what was the little bell going to do.
Well enough of day two.

Our First Day in Germany

The first day in Germany we left from London and arrived in Frankfurt around 9:30 am. By the time we got our luggage and found the car rental it was probably 11:30. The first day we had planned on going and visiting my cousin that I haven’t seen since I was 13.
We drove to a little village in south Germany called Claw which is SE of Stuttgart and got there a little late due to construction on almost every motorway we went on. My cousin had lunch for us and the table was all decorated and had tons of food on it. If they had come to our house the food probably would have been on the stove top and self-serve. We had great food and my second cousin was there to translate for us. I know I’m German and should speak the language but my German is very bad.

About an hour and a half later she said she had a light snack for us. By light she meant a pie and two cakes. A thousand calories a slice type cakes. Then another hour went by and she asked if we would be ready for dinner at 5. It’s a good thing we were only there that one day. We excused ourselves to go check into a small Gasthaus for the night and returned at 6 for a meal of salad, sandwiches and more deserts.
They showed us some pictures of different things around there and one was a picture of a large roasted pig. I asked where they found a place to roast something that large and was told that almost every village had an outdoor oven that was available for anyone in the town to use. While at the Gasthaus I looked out back and seen two outdoor ovens that must have been for that purpose.
The next morning we had breakfast which is included at almost every Gasthaus consisting of boiled eggs, meats, breads, fruit and cereals. All in all it was a pleasant visit and got to meet some relatives I haven’t seen for 50 years. We got some rest that night and traveled to a town NW of Munchen called Altomunster to go to Oktoberfest the next day.