Saturday, April 6, 2013

Traveling hither and yon, part 3

The second week of my spring break, D and I made a four-day trip to Bavaria. We chose Munich as our home base and made a day trips to the cities of Augsburg and Triberg to get the complete Black Forest/Southern Germany experience. Also, because a friend was born in Augsburg and wanted some pictures.

Happy to oblige.

Odeonsplatz, Munich
There's a Jesuit church just to the right of this photo, and we stumbled upon a service inside. Naturally, we joined in and received a blessing (non-Catholics, both of us, so no Eucharist) from a very on-the-ball priest. Often when I attend Mass and go up for a blessing, the priests seem confused. I think mostly if you're not Catholic you don't go to Mass. I like to think I'm adding a little spark of interest to their days.

In this same Jesuit church we saw the schedule of which priests were available when for pre-Easter confession. Along with each priest's schedule was the languages he understood. Some were "just" German and English, but a number had four or five languages listed. Very impressive.

Schloss Nymphenburg, the palace of the kings of Bavaria

Inside the palace, very...frenetic.
Just one of the coronation carriages.
Baroque/rococo has never been my favorite architectural style. I find it very busy and rather overwhelming. The artists, architects, and rulers of Bavaria clearly disagreed with me based on the way they decorated their palaces and conveyances. It does make for a splendid museum, if a visually exhausting one.

The Munich Rathaus, or town hall/elector's palace
The clock tower here has a little tableau that plays at 11am every day. Regrettably, since the figures are protected from nesting pigeons by a net, it can be kind of difficult to see. But look, a pretty old German building!

A view from on high
The Chinese Tower, in the English Garden.
The permanent wave in the English Garden. Very dedicated surfers.
The English Garden is especially popular in the summer when all is warm, green, and sunny, but it was also pretty in the quasi-winter of our visit. Rather cold - I wouldn't have wanted to spend hours wandering around - but lovely nevertheless.

Augsburg's Golden Hall
We made a day trip to Augsburg, the third-oldest city in Germany and the site of the Treaty of Augsburg, which ended the Thirty Years' War. The Thirty Years' War was fought between Catholics and Protestants in Germany for (you guessed it) thirty years and was very destructive to both humans and buildings. Between that war and World War II, it can be difficult to find original buildings in a number of cities and Germany isn't known for it's towering old churches or palaces the way that France or Italy is because many were destroyed at least once, if not twice.

Triberg Waterfall
We ended our Bavarian trip in the town of Triberg (which isn't actually in Bavaria, but ssssh!), a quintessential Black Forest establishment that is home to Germany's highest waterfall and the original Black Forest Cake. We ate the cake (Schwarzwaldkirschtorte) at the cafe that claims to have come up with it. Yummy! Cake drenched in cherry schnapps was just the way to finish everything off.

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