See My Work with Patty Lakinsmith for the ISGB/Bead and Button Convergence Exhibit

Sunday, October 28, 2012

German Graffiti

I would be remiss in recounting our adventure in Germany if I didn't show you some of the wonderful Graffiti I shot! Those of you who know me, know I'm a collector! So this post shows some of the interesting art I found during our vacation. I am often inspired to create something from the wall art, in metal.  So when I do, I'll post it here like I did last time.

And now on with the show... I showed this one in my first post about Germany, but I want to show it again, since this was the first piece of Graffiti I shot from the train.

Taken on our bike ride!

Ha ha! I leave Florida for Europe and find "oceans" of Graffiti!

Not sure, but I think this is a statement about  technology!

This was one of my favorites! I think the flowering vine really adds to the overall affect.

Love this one too!

My next post will be a continuation of the trip and I'll share more Graffiti down the road, so to speak!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Bike Ride

Continuing on my story of our German vacation...

One of the things Karren and I discussed, in planning the trip to Germany, was the idea of renting bikes and really getting to see the countryside up front and personal. Since bicycles are a major form of transportation throughout Europe, I felt pretty safe in agreeing to the adventure, not worrying about people not having "bike manners" like where I live. Here, I think they must give points for running over the bicyclist...or at least getting far closer than is really safe and there are very few bike lanes, if any.  Anyway, dear hubby and I ride our bikes several times a week, so I thought I was in pretty good shape.

Karren planned the route, including along the way, a couple of small breweries where we could get a taste of the local beer.  (Let me insert here that Karen estimated it was about 10 miles round trip. I mention this, because I'm going to come back to her ability to determine distance a little later on!)

So off we go to get our bikes. The scenery along the way was gorgeous and the shop was near the river.

It took a couple of tries and a return trip to exchange bikes to find one small enough for me to comfortably ride. I took a lot of teasing, because it looked like a child's bike. So ok, I'm with it! Anyway, we set off on our adventure (and the 10 mile round trip...). The country side was beautiful and the roads were perfect for us to meander around, building up our thirst.

Dear hubby and me!

Karren and James

We stopped at a cute little brewery with a small restaurant that had outside tables. It was fitting to sit in the sun and enjoy the gorgeous view and weather....Mother Nature really favored us with a beautiful morning. This little tavern was apparently a local hang out as several people were sitting outside, drinking beer and playing cards.

Cheers! (or is that Prost!?)

After a delicious lunch and a lot of "beverages" we set off again. Now I have to tell you, we were headed, eventually, for  another small town outside of Bamberg where Karren lives called Bischberg.  The trip seemed to be getting pretty long and we teased Karren a lot about the true distance of this excursion. Toward the end, the weather turned cold and rainy, and we were still peddling our behinds off.  Karren's theory was that because the headwinds were so strong, it got harder and harder and felt like it was longer (and longer!). That's probably true....but the debate about how long our trip actually was went on for a couple of days. ( I say it was closer to 20 miles!) In fact, it was still going on after we arrived home in New Port Richey. I got an email from Karren saying she tracked it on google maps (or a similar program) and it turns out it was actually around 13 miles.  Yeah right! I have to see that to believe it!. I think we were out between 7 or 8 hours, including the stop for lunch.

Truth be told, it doesn't matter how far we actually went. (I just know it was more than 13 miles, Karren!!! lol!) It was a blast and I think we all enjoyed it so much, we want to do it again - next time! 

But ....I am going to buy Karren a pedometer!

Monday, October 22, 2012

An Evening in Bamburg

When I last posted, we had just arrived in Bamburg and checked into the hotel. By now it's evening and we're woefully sleep deprived, but too excited to call it a day! And we were hungry......

So off we went to see the sights and find an outdoor cafe for food and drink. Bamburg is so quaint and pretty, with tons of cafes and restaurants so we let Karren lead us to one of her favorite spots. The town is a big tourist attraction, and once seated outside the restaurant, we watched tours walk by, led by a costumed tour guide who looked like something out of a movie, carrying a lantern or a large staff.

View from our table. You can see the back of a tour guide in the middle, dressed in black.
Karren introduced us to a German specialty wine called Federweisser. It's yeasty white wine, low in alcohol content, that has been pulled off during the fermenting process. It is only available in Sept and October because as it continues to ferment, it will become regular wine. It can't be stored long, either.  In fact, once bottled, it has to remain upright and vented due to the process and carbonation. Anyway, it was very may be low in alcohol, but if you drink enough of it, you'll feel it! Of course, I would NEVER do that!
Can't see dear hubby too well, but here's what the wine looks like!

As darkness fell, the town took on a fairytale look, and since we'd been up for a couple of days, we decided to call it a night. Sleep awaited.....

Isn't this pretty?
View on the walk back to the hotel. The river at night.

That's all for now. Stay tuned for the next day's adventure - on a bike!


Friday, October 19, 2012

On to Bamburg!

So...yesterday I described the fun in the train station. Now we're on the train, headed to Bamburg, where we will stay for a few days. I was anxious to see the town that so captivated my friend Karren, so much so, that she left New Port Richey to pursue her dreams there!

Karren had made the reservations, so we were treated to seats around a table and a great window view. Not a bad way to take a two hour train ride!

The countryside was gorgeous and lush. I was intrigued by the village-like scenes that flashed by, all looking like they came out of a story book. But you know me, I'm going to find some odd ball things along the way....and so I did!

Found outside the train station.
They are not shy about using that four letter word!

And of course, I found graffiti along the way! 

Did I mention the Germans aren't shy? (or prudish)

The trip was pleasant and uneventful, which was a good thing since we'd been awake for almost 24 hours by that time.  But when we arrived in Bamburg, I was fully awake!!! Such beauty! I felt like I'd stepped into a fairy tale. So we walked to our hotel and checked in, anxious to explore if our energy held out!

View from our floor

View of the area behind the hotel from our floor

Flap Alert!

So....we're off to explore. Let's not forget that we're still looking for Flaps, though we probably won't find many in Bamburg. I didn't realize that though Oktoberfest is a German celebration, the main festivities are held in Munich, not so much in the surrounding towns. But we will not be put off by that little factoid! Stay tuned for the continuing saga of the flap!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Germany, continued -the Flap Alert!

So, to continue my story of our adventures in Germany.....I left you yesterday as we were leaving Munich for Bamburg. The train ride was about two hours long, but the views of German countryside were great entertainment. However, the train station was even more entertaining!

Because it was during Oktoberfest, the folks in Munich were dressed in Dirndls and Liederhausen, traditional German clothing. Karren and I were fascinated with all the different types and variations of the outfits, and I have to say I was surprised to see mostly young people dressed so traditionally. Karren and I can find humor in just about anything, and this time the Liederhausen provided fodder for much joking and speculation. For one thing...there's a big flap in the front, and they are all sizes and decorated differently. So.....we went on Flap Alert....and everytime a flap went by, one of us would call it! Now I have to tell you, most of the outfits were pretty cool looking, but every now and then we'd spy an odd one or two. Like this one:

Tall man with VERY short Liederhausen~

Dirndl and Liederhausen for sale at the train station.
You can see the rather ornate flap I mentioned!

Leiderhausen with suit jacket.

Um..Flap alert!
Really -Flap Alert!
Last refreshment before boarding the train.

So...we're off on the train...the fun has only just begun. Stay tuned...

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Well, I haven't written in a while because, frankly, I couldn't think of anything really interesting to say. How sad is that? My life just seems to hum along nicely, with few surprises but always a lot of fun!

A couple of weeks ago we went to Germany to catch up with my friend Karren and her hubby, James. Karren is a writer and English teacher in Bamburg - you can catch up with her on her blog - She's also a fantastic photographer!  Anyway, I digress....

On arriving in Munich, we went to Marianplatz to have a traditional German breakfast and watch the Glockenspiel. A traditional breakfast is apparently white sausage, large pretzel and beer! (At least during Oktoberfest!)

Karren greeting us when we arrived!

Traditional Breakfast
And of course, the beer!

James and more beer!

After our traditional breakfast we took a walk around Munich and visited a large open market. I don't think I've ever seen markets like this one!

These are hops, hanging in the market.
Would you believe these are Artichoke flowers???

After our walk, we headed to the train station for our trip to Bamburg...but that's another story!

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