Wednesday, July 8

A 4th of July in Bavaria

My patriotic pyro husband MUST have 4th of July fireworks. We headed down to the base and resort at Garmisch for their show and to see the quaint towns below the Alps without feet of snow.

On our way down, we stopped at Linderhof Palace which is like a petite Versailles mixed with a bit of the Orient built by crazy King Ludwig II in the late 1800s. This guy built the Cinderella castle Neuschwanstein and a few others, but was a loner and died young. You just shake your head at all this ornateness sometimes!

Our camera has been acting up and stopped taking pictures for the rest of the weekend. It was actually quite liberating! Ryan just asked if I was finally posting the rest of our Paris trip. I said, “Nope. Garmisch. Less pictures.” [Also an apt sample of my communication skills post-dinner.]

On Friday, after a yummy breakfast buffet where my boys ate their hearts out, we braved a rainy day determined to be undeterred. Back to the buffet though, my boys typically don’t actually eat much when we’re out. But there they were, starting off with a bowl of cereal while Ryan and I gathered the other buffet items. They’d do pancakes, bacon, watermelon, a hard boiled egg, and orange juice. It was fascinating to me! They were so happy and content it was actually not a nightmare to be eating in public! And I got my omelette made to order, Yum!

Alright, Friday we headed to Eibsee Lake to go out on a boat but we had to wait for the rain to subside as Ryan insisted it would. I don’t know why I haven’t taken this weather seriously yet and outfitted us all with proper rain gear. I’m still a doubting desert girl deep down. The rain stopped just long enough for us to do a motor boat ride and then it was back to rain.

We headed into Oberammergau, famous for it’s Passion Play held every ten years for almost 400 years now. We were there to browse wood carving shops which are just amazing! We scoped out favorite nativity characters and backdrops but the children ruled out any real concentrated effort which must have really annoyed the shop keepers. I’m the idiot that picked up one piece despite “Don’t Touch” signs posted everywhere. Just about gave the proprietor a heart attack and my cheeks were flushed with embarrassment for at least a half hour! Tired of dodging the rain with our troups, we succumbed to their pleas to go swimming at the hotel.

On Saturday we were in search of adventure! We took the Eckbauer cable cars and hiked down the mountain in an effort to do something until the “sommerrodelbahn” opened at 10. We like rodelbahns , or alpine slides or summer tobogans!!! I loved hearing Ryan hoopin’ and hollerin’ all the way down the mountain! And the boys all grinning from ear to ear with wind parted hair was pretty cute too! We found another rodelbahn and zipline in Oberammergau with goats looking on. We also ate some “fire cheese” at a cheese factory in Ettal, saw a wedding in their famous cathedral, and watched a wood carver and some other artisans in Oberammergau.

The boys got a bit of swimming in before the 4th of July festivities began. The hotel had “carnival” games for the kids, but the real fun was the magician and Bavarian culture program. The boys have been doing “magic” tricks since then with any types of ropes they find. We got a kick out of the Bavarian costumes, long horns’ music, dancing, and yodeling but were anxious for FIREWORKS!!!

Luckily, our room faced the show so we watched from our balcony. We’d gotten little party horns earlier at the carnival, but Ryan’s horn made this forlorn honk that had us all in fits of laughter. Morgan was in awe and a scared stiff by the fireworks while the boys loved and laughed through the whole thing. Happy Birthday, United States of America!!!