Friday, December 20, 2013

The First Day

I know some of you purists out there that feel the need to think in a systematic, organized way are wondering why I am posting "Day ONE" when I already posted a post named Day Two. [Day Two link] Well...because it's my blog and I  can play fast and loose with the timeline...but in reality that post was referring to the day, I posted it...not what we did on day two.  The REAL Day Two post will be coming soon. bring you up to speed,....when I first got into Germany, I landed in Frankfort at 11:45 AM  German time...but, of course, that is 4:45 AM Kansas City time.  I know some people struggle with jet lag but that has never been the case for me.  As  a regular member of Club Insomnia, being awake at 4:45 wouldn't be out of  the norm anyway. 

The Guest House where Hubby  was residing is  79 miles down the autobahn (or 127 Km if you prefer the metric system) away so we first had to get back to his place.  I might point out to those of you that haven't been to Germany before, you might want to brace yourself for a really fast commute.  While there are speed limits, no one ever uses them.  Hubby was going over 110  and people were passing us like we were sitting still.  I am fairly confident that some of them were calling us "pussies" but as I don't speak I am not entirely certain of that. 

After dropping off my bags in his room, I was anxious to go see some Germany. Weissenthurm is a small little town with a couple of notable historical sights but on that first day, we went 6 miles to Andernach where hubby has been  working the last three months. 

I have been to quite a few German towns but Andernach  is one of the most interesting, quaint and charming towns along the Rhein in my opinion.  It is, also, one of the oldest towns in Germany having celebrated a "Bimillenary feast" in 1988.

A few other little facts....  First of all, the pronunciation isn't "Ander-nak".  It's something akin to "On-der-nuukk"...with the nuk part sounding like you are trying to clear your throat. 

Andernach is a town of about 30,000 people.  It sits on the left bank of the Rhein River and the people there have there own German dialect. The dialect is considered Low German.  One of the local residents that had a working knowledge of English told me that they can't understand the German (High German) spoken in other parts of Germany.  I was tempted to say "Welcome to my world...I can't understand any of you"  but I thought that might not make the best impression.    Their dialect, by the way is called Annenach.

Andernach was settled in 12 BC by the Romans.  The town is surrounded by the medieval remnants of the fortifications that surrounded the town.   There are also, the remains of a castle, a toll bastion, and a geyser. Yes, you read that correctly...there is the world's highest cold water geyser is in Andernach, Germany.

But back to our tour...One of our first stops was the Round Tower. 

The Round Tower is one of the original 5 towers, two gates and wall that acted as a fortress for the city. Construction of the tower began in 1440 and completed in 1443.  The French troops of Ludwig XIV tried to blow it up in 1689 but all he managed to do was knock a bit of a dent into it. Currently it is a museum open on weekends allowing visitors to walk up to the top.

Ludwig XIV dented it but didn't destroy it

climbing, climbing, climbing

view from the tippy-top of the tower

After leaving the tower we walked through a historic church and then toward the  the downtown area where there was a small Christmas Market and a pageant taking place.

Going through one of the old fortress gates toward the town square

Getting closer
Nearly There

Let's Eat,  Drink and Be Merry

This was a tiny little market compared to the ones we went to later in the week. At this point it's time to head back to Weissenthurm but we return to Andernach to see the castle, bastion and geyser.  Crabby Pant's Tour bus  will pick up where we left off on the next post...

To Be Continued...


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Your last illustration is brilliant, LOL! And it seems very unlike those meticulous Germans not to have repaired the dent in that tower.

Cheryl P. said...

I noticed at least three different signs talking about how the French tried to destroy the tower, so if they would have repaired would be hard to keep dogging them about it.

Wendy said...

You walked ALL the way to the top? Well, Well, I understand why Crabby Pants wanted to just wait for you. But, weren't you concerned someone would decide to take her home, thinking her an unusual part the tower's history? Hum, and one would want a cold geyser because...? Love the feel in the pictures of the market, hope to see more. Is there an aura of 'real' festivity and fun? I know, you make your own fun wherever you go, Cheryl!

Chubby Chatterbox said...

Maybe the little guy in the red hat is looking for Phil and the Amazing Race mat.

Cheryl P. said...

Yes, Hubby and I can't resist climbing up to the top of things. There was a climb later in the week that made that tower look like child's play.

HMMM...I never tend to worry about Crabby Pants' safety. Who really wants another snotty person in their lives?

I didn't realize that geysers could be cold-water. I thought that the heat is at least in part, what made them irrupt. It turns out that in this one there is natural carbon dioxide that causes it to blow.

Yes, it is true that we find a lot of fun in our meanderings. It is really a shame that neither writing nor reading these synopses can equal the "feel" of any of the places we visited. Without the smells, sounds, even the mood of the various locales, none of these posts can convey how much fun it really was.

Cheryl P. said...

You could be right. Who wouldn't want to hang out with Phil? There is a guy that knows his way around the globe.

Nicky said...

Hey, you can always blame the backwards days on an abundance of German beers. Nobody needs to know you don't drink. I won't tell a soul, promise :-)

My mom speaks High German, but a couple of her friends speak Low German and you can really tell the difference when you listen to them in discussion together.
Anderach looks like a lovely place, glad you enjoyed the tour!

Cheryl P. said...

I trust you explicitly with any and all of my secrets. The fact that I have so few is disturbing, though.
Interesting... your mom can converse with people speaking Low German? The person that I was talking to said she struggles understanding their slang. I know you speak French and you also, speak German???
Yes, Andernach is great fun. For those of us that live in U.S. suburbia (which is totally devoid of charm) it's great fun to be in cute little towns with buildings older than 20 years.

lisleman said...

I never thought of insomnia as helping jet lag. My approach to jet lag was willpower to stay up until the local bedtime.
Thanks for the tour. Did you see the geyser squirt?

Cheryl P. said...

If your job keeps moving you into multiple time zones you would have to be somewhat adaptable as far as time goes.

Thanks, Kelly. Happy Holidays to you and your family, as well.

Chickens Consigliere said...

I would have picked up the gnome, too. They might know a leprechaun and leprechauns are privy to all the best local joints, not to mention pots of gold. Not that you shouldn't love the gnome for him/herself. Just sayin'. The gnome has friends. The friends are useful, thus the gnome...who am I? The Gnomefather? I'm going now.

Cheryl P. said...

I think I am very adaptable to irregular sleep patterns which does help to not feel jet lag.

We didn't see the geyser in action. I would of liked to have seen it but it is only accessible by boat and the boat was leaving the dock just as we arrived.

Cheryl P. said...

Plus they are kind of cute...don't you think? Maybe there are particular gnomes that could finagle some deep discounted travel fares, as well. Besides, Crabby Pants and I figured we could kick his little gnome ass if he turned out to be a freak. The tote I travel with weighs more than a gnome.

Dawn McBride said...

I'm SO jealous. I've always wanted to visit Germany. This trip looks amazing. Love all the pictures you're posting. One of these days I'll manage to make it out of North America.

Annie (Lady M) x said...

Wow! fab post Cheryl. I LOVE the German autobahns - no speed limit, and you can really rag the car ;-) That picture of the dent in the tower is awesome ..... so much history. Can't wait for the next installment!

Cheryl P. said...

Hi Dawn! I hope you get the chance at some point. Germany is such an interesting place. While I am famous for saying there are still plenty of places for me to see in the North America, every time we get a chance to go abroad, I find it to be a unique and amazing adventure. you have a blog? If so let me know.

Cheryl P. said...

What's the speed limit in the UK? Do English drivers drive at maniacal speeds?
I know some people find history boring but I am fascinated by things that last hundreds and sometimes thousands of years. I know from your perspective a building that is a couple of hundred years old is nothin' but here in Kansas, a house is old at 20 or 30 years old..especially in suburbia.

Cheryl P. said...

I was finding it fascinating in a terrified sort of way, as to how people drive there. It's not only the fact people are driving 130+ MPH, but they come up on the ass end of your car and zip around you without seemingly leaving any space.

Thanks, I took a gazillion photos and am struggling to figure out what thinks might be of interest to people...or not as the case may be.

There is a lot of walking and climbing but I was thankful for it. They eat of lot of heavy caloric food over there. I am going to talk about all the meat and cheese that makes up their diet in one of the upcoming posts.

BTW...I read Facebook (even though I rarely participate) Congrats to Justin.... Rutgers... OMG...that is so cool.

meleahrebeccah said...

Awww! Thanks, Cheryl!

And also ­ meat & cheese are about ALL I can eat ­ so I can't wait to hear about that!

Agent 54 said...

Nice pics. I'd love to wisit Germany some day and look up my ancestors. I love old architecture and fortifications and history. Nice Travel log so far.

Riot Kitty said...

Awesome! Thanks so much for the tour. I have German ancestry, along with a bunch of other places...I've never been good at learning languages where it sounds like you have to clear your throat, though ;)

Cheryl P. said...

I, also, love old architecture and find those old fortresses so interesting. Not everyone does, so I love to hear that someone else does. Later in the week or possibly next week, I'll post of lot more pictures of those fortresses and castle remains.

Hope you and your family have a great holiday.

Cheryl P. said...

As there is absolutely no hope of me ever, EVER learning German, I can say without hesitation that 'throat clearing" sound is out of my capability.

Have a great holiday, RK. Be sure to check on the nice list I am posting tomorrow. I have it on good authority, you are indeed on the NICE list this year.