Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Germany: The First Two Days

Well, the first day is always the toughest.  Getting to Germany from America is a long day.

We left Nashville at 3pm on Monday and arrived in Frankfurt at noon on Tuesday, June 10.  Not only was the trip long, but it had it's other challenges. Alex was battling pink eye (and still is).  Annie didn't want to sleep on the plane.  I think she was too excited.  And, Kaden wanted to watch every movie on the plane.  Each of us had our own movies to watch and activities to do.

Once we arrived, we got our luggage, went through customs and waited for Amo & Apo to pick us up. We went straight to our Landhaus Diedert in Wiesbaden, where we changed, showered and got cleaned up.  Some of us took naps, others were too excited and headed down to the restaurant to have a little something to eat.

Later that evening, my Aunt Barbel came with my Omi.  We spent some time with each other - just catching up and giving lots of hugs and kisses.  Annie was especially sweet with Omi, which I know Omi treasured very much.  A little bit later Katja and Patric showed up with their two children - my second cousins/nephews I guess - Sophia and Laurenz (Larry, as we called him).  Sophia and Annie quickly bonded and connected and started to play together at the swing set.

We had a good evening of talking, laughing and telling stories.  We were all pretty tired.  I was amazed at how much energy Annie had though.  She was a trooper.  Never once took a nap until it was time for bed.

At around 10pm we all went to bed and slept relatively well.  We all were up around 2am for a while, but then fell back asleep until a storm woke us up.  We had all the windows open, but it was kind of nice to hear the rain and thunder outside as we continued to sleep until 9.

On Wednesday morning, we originally had made plans to go to the Fasanerie Tier Park (local zoo), but the kids were still sleeping.  We postponed it for tomorrow.  In the meantime, Alex and I were up and he couldn't wait to have a good German breakfast with Broetchen and meats.   He seemed to like it.  His eyes are looking better, but he's been wearing my sunglasses a lot, which helps him.

Later after everyone had some breakfast, Amo, Krissy, the kids and I went for a walk around the neighborhood - through the woods and to the zoo and back.  It was a good hour - and so nice to be walking through the many trails in this area.  It's one of the things I love the most about Germany - taking hikes on all of the trails in the hills and woods.  It feels like they are hundreds of years old.

Then, after Apo got back from the dentist, I drove the stick shift van to Eltville, where we were going to ride bikes along the Rhein river.  Before we got our bikes, Annie wasn't paying attention and almost got hit by a car.  It scared us all half to death.  She was running after Apo and didn't know she was on a street - it was cobblestone.  Anyway, thankfully the lady driving the other car was cautious and slowed down enough not to hit Annie.  I can't think about what could have happened too much or it makes me sick.

Annie rode on the bike with me and I rode along the Rhein with her.  I got some good video of her and I riding with the GoPro. It was fun. All of us had our own bikes.  We rode through a few small towns along the Rhein: Oestrich, Mittelheim and then rode back - stopping often along the way.

We had lunch at a nice restaurant along the Rhein.  The waiter reminded Krissy of Paul Buono - my producer.  Looked just like him and similar mannerisms.  We ate Bratwurst, Kartoffelsalat and Spaetzle.  Plus lots of good drinks and of course, a good cherry kuchen - which we noticed cherries are in season here.

Later that night on the way to dinner, we passed by a local cherry and strawberry stand and got some.  They were delicious.  We ate at a restaurant at the top of the Neroberg - Hof am Neroberg.  Beautiful view and lots of fun memories were made.  Krissy got to share essential oils in depth with Omi and Barbel.  And Annie got to have some precious time with Omi.  By the end, Annie and Kaden were playing on the nearby playground and Alex was in the corner sleeping after another Schnitzel meal!

I drove us all home and enjoyed the fresh cool breeze and beautiful view from our balcony.  The weather has been absolutely beautiful.  I'm very thankful for this nice place we have here to stay at Landhaus Diedert just outside of Wiesbaden in Klarenthal.

That's it for today.  Tomorrow more time with Katja, Patric, Omi and Barbel.  Guten nacht!

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