Friday, August 12, 2011

A Bad, A Waterfall, and a Castle

On Saturday we awoke to a house of peeping and muttering children. We had our brand new car and we wanted to make the most of a free Saturday, but the kids did not want to go. After throwing some ideas around, we decided to explore the Swabian Alb or Jura. We also decided to let Maddie stay at home by herself, which was the fondest wish of her heart. We drove off to Bad Urlach, which would be about like visiting Lindon (UT) or Richmond (CA). Except that its downtown is all half-timbered.
They were having their Saturday market and we bought some strawberries and apples and munched them happily.
Rob had also seen the church tower and we went on a quest to find it. The guidebook just talked about the main square, but we loved the Amanduskirche.

We also found a general store where we bought a playmobil figurine and we should have bought three.
The lion and the snake. Are those two Hogwarts houses?
We found a water wheel. It was in use until 1958 when the mill became the city museum. It was mesmerizing.
And so was the stream that fed it. We found several trout hanging around in it.
The Residenzschloss with the church tower behind. From the town, we drove out to a hike we'd heard about to the Urlacher waterfall.
The temperature was great and the hike was just right for the boys.
We spent 3/4 of our time walking alongside the stream as it came down. It was so clear!
I could have jumped in.

It was so green and gorgeous!
We made it to the top!

On the way back we gave in and let the boys get into the water.
OK, I did too, and it was cold! We dried off and walked back to the car where we ate our lunch by this strange little tiled pool. It was a place to cool off your muscles after hiking, and about a dozen or so Germans and our boys went walking around it. Once we dried off again, we got into the car and drove to Schloss Lichtenstein.
Once we arrived we found a playground
which is always an obligatory stop.
After a few more minutes of slides, swings, ziplines and seesaws, we made our way to the castle.
I was blown away.
We went on a half hour tour in German. Our guide was funny and her stories were funny but my German can't quite reach humor yet and I had to wait for some help. There were no photos allowed, but if you can't stand it, you can look at the inside in the schloss gallery on the website. It was also late in the day and so we reluctantly plugged Joss into the earphones and the iPad. The guide noticed it and told Rob she thought it was great "Oh, yes, it quieted him right down". Some other tourist said it was the best thing he'd seen that day.
There were some great rooms and a big armor collection that the boys loved. There was a small chapel at one end, and a drinking room at the other with a pulpit in it. One could tell hunting stories from the pulpit which, while they did not have to be true, did have to be entertaining.
Antlers and lobelia -- never would have put those two together myself, but they look great, don't they?
Joss was all about finding hidey holes and there were plenty for him.
And Rob and MA got in one more day of sightseeing with a reluctant brood. YAY! And that night Maddie said "I probably should have come with you . . ." True, but there's no way to know that until you stay home once.


Julie said...

I am constantly amazed at all you have seen and done. Your kids will have some fantastic memories. I LOVE that castle!

Dieter said...

We also found a general store where we bought a playmobil ...