Saturday, December 27, 2008

imaginary honey vanilla chamomile. [Weihnachten week]

My mother has a unacceptably non-existent tea stash in her house, a far cry from my own full to the brim tea drawer back in Montreat. I've bought some tea bags, but nothing can compare to my habitual honey vanilla chamomile in the evening before bed, so I am writing without my tea, devastatingly.
This week has been pretty wonderful. We traveled back to Regensberg on Tuesday afternoon and stayed through the evening, enjoying the numerous Christmas Markets whilst we wandered the cobble-stoned streets of the Altstadt of the city. We breathed in, then sipped on a few different cups of Glühwein, a wonderful mulled wine made in a variety of flavors, my preference being the Apfel Glühwein. We also dined on metre-long sausages, crêpes, so delicious. We milled around the main Christmas market in Regensberg for a good amount of time before we set off in search of a local Irish pub called Murphy's Law, which we had only be told of, not seen ourselves. My mother bravely asked numerous people in German where we might be able to find the pub, and only after asking about 5 different people did we get solid directions. We finally made it, and rewarded ourselves with pints o and nutella-bananaf our favorite drinks, mine being a Black Velvet, a wonderful combination of Guinness and Strongbow Hard Cider. We spent a couple hours there, talking, eating, drinking, and just generally reveling in the good company of each other before we set off to the parking garage to make our way home. It was a wonderful evening. Christmas in Germany is something everyone should experience--it's magical.
Christmas Eve was a relatively lazy day until I was forced to make dinner for everyone. Juuust kidding, I jest, I volunteered to make my homemade macaroni and cheese with kielbasa sausage and granny smith apples, because I have decided that it will be my traditional Christmas Eve dinner for my own family. It turned out well, and there were appreciative grunts of tastiness heard round the table. We didn't end up really doing anything but watching random Christmas movies on TV, but it was great being with family none the less. Christmas morning was highlighted with my mother's wonderful traditional Christmas breakfast casserole and strawberry butter, and of course our respective gifts to one another were all fantastic as well. We ended up playing a family game of Trivial Pursuit Christmas evening, which I won for the first time in my life. My mother usually reads the cards in her spare time, and that paired with her already trivia and knowledge packed brain is always a tough contender. Though my mother claims she hasn't read the cards in years, it was still a tough game. We enjoyed white wine Glühwein while we played. After quiting early due to my father's heavy eyelids, I was in the lead, and was consequently declared the winner--though I think my mom probably would have ended up winning in the end.
The past few days we more lazy days, though yesterday my mother made her wonderful Christmas dinner for us--which she can get away with doing on December 26 in Germany because they celebrate it as Second Christmas Day, like Boxing Day in the UK. We also began watching the spectacular documentary, Planet Earth, produced by BBC, which is absolutely amazing. We watched one disk yesterday, and another today--neither ceased to amazing me with almost every frame.
Today my mom had to work, but my dad took Jeremy and I to a few local wonders. First we took the backroads for about 45 minutes to Kallmünz to see the burg, or castle, up on the hill above the city. After an near-embarrassing trek up the steep, sometimes not so there, stairs up the hill, we made it to the ruins. They were amazing. The masonry, though crumbled, has lasted for more than 500 years. Just running your hand along the aged stone makes you wonder what these stones would tell if they could, what have they seen--battles, love affairs, treachery, peaceful family feasts, weddings, who knows what else those walls have seen in their antiquated years? It was great fun exploring and frolicking among the ruins and in the fields in the courtyard. Jeremy and I love experiencing these sorts of things together, him for the stone masonry, me for the imaginary stories, and both for the history. It was wonderful.
We also went to a very old, very large, very cold church attached to a monastery which was also very humbling and amazing to behold. We walked somberly around inside the great sanctuary of the church, investigating more interestingly old things, as well as pretending to confess in an beautifully carven confessional--no worries, we did nothing heretical (in our theology, at least). We finished off the lovely, yet chilly, day with a small meal in the restaurant attached to the monastery, which was delicious as usual.
I'm not completely sure what our schedule looks like for the next week or so, but I do know that my Dutch sister, Fabienne, is coming for a visit which I am very excited about, we are planning day trips to Rothenberg and Prague which I am also very excited about, and also Jeremy and I will be spending afew days with Meghan, my sister-in-law, in Heidelberg which, you guessed, I am very excited about.
I'll catch up sometime next week if time allows.



Laura Rebecca said...

Man, that second picture made me miss you both an awful lot. And I wish wish wish I could go to German castles. (I also demand to hear about the near-embarrassing incident. In due time.)

I also like the fact that you guys have the tradition of Trivial Pursuit. I am glad, though I miss you much, that you can spend this time with your family.


Amethyst said...

You did nothing heretical (theologically, at least).

That makes me think you made out in the church. FOR SHAME.

I miss you guys so badly. Jeremy looks very epic in all his photos, and you look, finally, relaxed and peaceful. That makes me happy.

Kristi said...

I had some tea today and thought of you, though I'm probably one of those blasphemers who needs milk in her tea.

I haven't had a tea yet that I can do without adding milk or some form of sweetener.

bookishme said...

I am so glad you are having a good time. I know we are not always the most exciting company, but we love having you both here. Love you muchly!
Very descriptive writing, BTW. It's as if I were there! ;)