Saturday, October 09, 2010

TRIP FLASHBACK: Thursday, September 30

Here is the view from our room. We are staying at the Hotel Haus Lipmann in the town of Belstein on the Moselle River. This property entered the Lipmann family in 1795 and has been with them for eight generations! Remarkable. As Rick Steves writes in his guidebook (which we borrowed from Nick) "Upstream from Cochem, along the Mosel River, is one of Germany's quaintest towns: Beilstein (BILE-shtine), a tranquil Cinderella-land with narrow lanes, an ancient wine cellar, territorial swans, and a ruined castle. ... Beilstein is so well-preserved because it was essentially inaccessible by road until about 1900." There are only about 300 residents of this town which survives on grapes and guest houses. Before Hitler's Rampage, 25% of inhabitants were Jewish. Today, there are none.

Here is a look out of another one of our windows at this delightful little B & B / hotel. So classically German! Each morning we have breakfast HERE. Our table is the one on the far right in the middle. They have two high chair / stools ready for the boys and everything. Breakfast is typically a hard boiled egg and a variety of fruits and meats. There is also some cereal available for out little guys. Yum!

The courtyard outside of our hotel.

Elijah dressed in our winter wear for the week. We haven't needed the heavy coats we brought for them (on loan from Dan and Angelica and their three-year-old Noah who just came from Alaska.) But coats and pants have been in order. We are loving this cold weather. (I can't believe I am saying that.)

An attempt at a picture with both boys.

I have had trouble on numerous occasions, finding a place to throw a dirty diaper. They have these recycled bins everywhere. But no regular garbage cans. After coming from Turkey where there is no recycling (and very often no garbage cans), I am completely lost with the German language written everywhere and the choices of garbage cans. I guessed that this meant brown glass and opted to keep looking for an appropriate receptacle. But who knows?! I really don't wan to focus too much on the German language since I am trying so hard to learn Turkish. Adding extra words can't be helpful to my tiny brain.

Waving to the swans and ducks on the Moselle River across the street from our hotel.

It was very foggy but you can still see the beauty of the hills beyond us.

Another snapshot of the luxurious hills. Apparently, the steep slopes are the perfect environment for growing grapes. They are growing all over the slopes.

Right in front of the car on the main road driving is an archway. That tunnel leads to our hotel.

Isaac showing the height of one of their many legendary floods.

Daddy and Isaac reaching for flood levels.

We took a walking tour of the town. All of the roads were just like you see here, some much narrower. Yes, that's me straight ahead pushing the stroller while the boys walk.

JB said, "Look at the camera for a picture boys." This is what he got. Isaac insisted on wearing that hat for most of the day. And gloves sometime too.

This little horsey at one of the restaurants surrounding the hotel has been a favorite of the boys.

In the morning we went to the bordering town of Cochem via our rental car. We found a very nice market were we are able to get -- BERRIES! Raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries. We were in heaven. (There are currently no berries available to us in Turkey and we miss them greatly.) Each morning we have been here, we have eaten breakfast at the hotel, then eaten lunch out by getting fruit and crackers and cheeses or yogurts. And then for dinner, we've returned to our B & B. This picture was taken on a boat that we took from our hotel to Cochem and back again after returning from our driving tour. It was about 45 minutes each way. We met some wonderful people. Some we could talk to. Some we could not. Many younger Germans speak English but most people travelling right now are older individuals from Belgium, Holland, or England. Only the latter can we have a conversation with.

On the boat, we ordered this sandwich! Scrumptious! I've been told that this is pretty Germany-wide in fact ... the places where in America you'd get cruddy food (amusement parks, tourist things etc.) can produce very delicious food. This was awesome!

Each evening we have dinner at the hotel as well. While not included in our stay, they have amazing food cooked by the grandmother. Here is a picture of our view. Because it is off-season, there are very few people there, and the boys can run around and play while we eat. It's delightful.

Take a look at all the grapevines lining the ceiling of the restaurant.

Here is Isaac saying: "Mommy, hood please. Stop taking my picture!"

Here are a couple of videos of the boys in our B & B:


Grama Di said...

O Wendi!!! How beautiful! I am so happy you guys got that family time. Man! What beautiful country!

Joy Z said...

I gotta tell you how happy I was seeing a video of you Wendi! Most are of the boys only so this was a nice treat. Makes me miss you. Glad you had such a wonderful time in Germany. It looks absolutely beautiful!