Wow, this month has flown by in a blur of traveling and activities! As is becoming common though, most of my experiences never made it to my blog, so now I will offer an executive summary of the past month. J
- The month began with anticipation of a trip to Austria’s Lake District over the Fourth of July weekend. Unfortunately, those plans were suddenly abandoned when we learned that my Grandma Lamb had passed away on Friday, July 1st. We quickly made plans to fly back to Iowa on Monday, July 4th for the funeral on Wednesday, July 6th. The service was a beautiful celebration of her 86 years and I am so grateful that we were able to be there with the rest of my family. Living in Germany is wonderful, but this was a time when we needed to be home.
Brandon and I were blessed to be back in the U.S. when our newest niece was born on Friday, July 8th at 4:40am. We were able to meet Emma Renee Fasse at the hospital before we had to catch our plane that afternoon. My best friend from high school, Allie, also had her baby girl on the same day, but I have to wait to meet Miss Sophia Grace.
- During our brief trip in the U.S., we also managed to buy new running shoes for both of us, spend a significant amount of money at Target, and visit Brandon’s parents in Omaha.
- We arrived in Germany the morning of Saturday, July 9th and there was little time to recover from the jetlag! Brandon’s mom (Linda), his sister (Gillian), her husband (Ryan), and their one-year-old daughter (Elena) were arriving on Monday, July 11th. We had started to prepare for their visit some before we had left for the States. We borrowed a high chair and a stroller from the Lending Closet on post and had made arrangements with our friends with children to borrow a Pack ‘n Play and some toys. Funny how it takes so much more effort to prepare for a one-year-old to visit than it does for three adults! We also rented a van from Enterprise on post so we could all ride in one vehicle, but that turned out to be a bit of an ordeal. Due to the failures of other renters, our reserved van was not available and it took until Thursday to get something.
- Most importantly, our visitors arrived safe and sound to the Munich airport on Monday morning. Unfortunately, we had run into several Staus (traffic jams) outside of the city and their plane had landed early, so we weren’t there to greet them immediately. After getting their luggage to our cars, we took the train into the Altstadt for lunch and to sightsee. This strategy seems to work really well when we have visitors because it keeps them awake! They can take a little nap on the way home in the car, but then they have to wake up again for dinner. It seems that the later you can stay up that first day, the better you can cope with the jetlag.
Following are the highlights of each day while Linda, Gillian, Ryan, and Elena were in Bavaria:
- Monday, 11 JUL: Arrived in Munich. Saw some of the Altstadt and ate lunch at the Hofbräuhaus
- Tuesday, 12 JUL: Velburg castle ruins. Dinner at the Indian Restaurant in Regensburg.
Wednesday, 13 JUL: BMW Factory Tour in Munich.
- Thursday, 14 JUL: Nürnberg.
Friday, 15 JUL: Neuschwanstein & Hohenschwangau.
- Saturday, 16 JUL: Hohenfels Training Area & Laaber Chocolate Factory.
- Sunday, 17 JUL: Visited Ryan’s college roommate, Dan, and his fiancé, Ines, at her sister’s house in Ebersdorf bei Coburg.
Monday, 18 JUL: Bamberg and Basilika Vierzehnheiligen.
Tuesday, 19 JUL: Walhalla and more of Regensburg.
Wednesday, 20 JUL: Rothenburg ob der Tauber.
Thursday, 21 JUL: Schnitzel Festival at Rechbergerhof.
Friday, 22 JUL: Danube River cruise from Kelheim to Weltenberger Kloster and back. Summer Rodelbahn.
Saturday, 23 JUL: Flew back to Omaha.
- The last week of the month was spent “unbabying” the house, returning items we had borrowed, going back to work, and trying to get back into a routine.
- This past weekend, I performed for the first time with the Symphonisches Blasorchester der Stadt Regensburg. This “Kino Kino” concert was in Nittenau and featured movie music, including Star Wars, The Rock, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Forrest Gump, Out of Africa, and Chicken Run. I’ve been rehearsing with them since the end of May and I really enjoy playing with this group. The members of the clarinet section are really nice and they do their best to translate for me. Playing with a group where the primary language is English will seem much too easy when I return to the U.S.!
So, that is our July in a nutshell. I’m sure August will somehow be just as crazy, but maybe I’ll do better at blogging about it! (Do I write that at the end of every blog post??)
If you are interested, you can see lots more photos of our adventures with Linda, Ryan, Gillian & Elena, check out Ryan’s Flickr page!