Sharp at 03:30 pm I turn off my computer and leave the office. I can work longer from Monday to Thursday but Friday is the beginning of the weekend! The day after tomorrow is the first Sunday of Advent. In this special time we decided to visit one or even two Christmas Markets called “Weihnachtsmarkt” every weekend.
Lauterbach is a small town in the eastern Hessia. We went there not because of its tourist attractions, but because of – let’s call it – cultural values. Our friend celebrated his birthday and organized a party with traditional German sausage, meat called Leberkäse, potato salad and hectoliters of beer. Apart from the food the highlight of the party was the outfit. The hosts and many guests were dressed in dirndl – Bavarian-Austrian folk costume. We could not compete with them. In my wardrobe I found only one shirt a little bit similar to the dirndl.
Today is a beautiful autumn day. We pack our bags and go to the town Braunlage in the Harz Mountains. Here we meet with a friend and start a long trail to the highest peak called Brocken (1,142 meters above sea level). It is hot like in summer. On the blue sky we don’t see any single cloud. We definitely do not need so many clothes. No wonder that on such sunny day many people hike… The path is very crowded.
This time it’s not Easter blessing of food, but blessing of our four-legged friends. Catholic priest squeezes between the benches, peering into each box, patting rabbits, hamsters, dogs and cats.
- Woof, woof, meow, meow – you can hear around. Suddenly we also hear the noises of two horses!
The Statue of Hercules towers over Kassel since 1717 and is the hallmark of the city now. In July 2013 it has even been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List (No. 38 in Germany). Kassel once ugly and industrial urban center is transforming into the cultural capital of northern Hessia and attracts thousands of tourists from Germany and abroad.
The cooper sculpture of the Greek demigod stays on a hill in the park called Wilhelmshöhe. Besides the beautiful view from the top the major attractions in summer are illuminated cascades and fountains.
In the Czech Republic, just a few kilometers behind Głuchołazy, the small Polish town on the border where I was born, there is the tiny village Rejviz situated at an altitude of 792 m above sea level. It is famous mainly for winter sports. Besides the numerous cross-country ski routes and ski lifts there are many hiking trails suitable all year round which start here. On one of the last sunny days of autumn we pick a hiking trail to the Cross Peak.
Route: Wülmersen – Trendelburg – Wülmersen (14 km)
Once upon a time there was acouple. The husband wanted to meet the needs of his pregnant wife and stole vegetables for a salad from the garden of a witch. Unfortunately she caught him. In exchange for his life she demanded his future child. The witch took the new born girl and at the age of 12 she imprisoned her in a tower. But the adolescent young lady found a way to keep in contact with the world. She let down her long hair from the window to the ground and the prince climbed secretly up to see her etc….
At 10:30 I’m boarding the small cruise ship sailing the river Weser from Bad Karlshafen to Corvey. On the lower deck I park my bike and start talking to a couple:
- Good morning! How are you? I see you are also travelling by bike?
- Yes! We spend one week holiday in this way. After a short distance on board we will continue our bike trip and discover the area along the Weser river. Every night we sleep in a different place.
I’m jealous. I only have one day off that’s why I want to take the maximum advantage of that.
While hiking the trail “Weserberglandweg” all we saw of Hannoversch Münden was the memorial stone with a rhyming poem at the confluence of the rivers Fulda and Werra, where the river Weser starts towards the North Sea.
“Where Werra and Fulda kiss each other/ they must let go of their names/, and there through this kiss / originates German up to the sea the Weser River.”
Alexander von Humboldt once said that Hann. Münden (the short name) is one of the seven most beautifully situated cities in the world. To explore the old town we didn’t have enough time on our hiking trip, though. Because of that I use the possibility to take a day off today and to explore the city myself.
Bad Karlshafen is a little baroque town with a long history. It was founded in 1699 by Landgrave Charles of Hessia for Huguenots escaped from France. When the king of France cancelled the Edict of Nantes in the seventeenth century, which guaranteed equal rights for Protestants and Catholics, many Huguenots refused to convert to Catholicism and moved to Karlshafen. Here the religious freedom and the preservation of the language were guaranteed. Today you can discover this chapter of the history in an interesting museum in the center.