Monday, April 07, 2008

The weeks that was...

The Grimm Brothers, hubs, Julien my cousin and me

right before the Easter Holidays, we went to Hanau, Germany to visit my aunt (from my dad's side). It was just 6 hours drive there, well supposed to be but we took about 5 hours! When we arrived, my aunt was like "how come so fast? Speeding ler!?". Yup! Hubs was going about 180 to 200 kmh on certain parts of the German highway; famed for having no speed limit. I guess hubs was in heaven - speeding heaven that is. And believe it or not, there's been actually really rare cases of accidents there, which is a bit weird since speed kills as they say. But I guess when you're going a minimum of 170 kmh, you're on your toes all the time to be distracted.

The Würzburg Residence

Any ways, we spent a week at their place. Went visiting Frankfurt, Hanau and Würzburg. Didn't do much shopping or sight seeing besides the places mentioned earlier, this time around as the weather was horrid. But still, it didn't stop me from getting some books; PS, I Love You by Cecelia Ahern, Talk to the Snail by Stephen Clarke, 501 Must Visit Cities by Bounty Books and Guess How much I Love You by Sam McBratney & Anita Jeram with CD.

The main stairway of the Residence, notice the fresco above. Original by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo.

I really love the book Guess How Much I Love You. I've been reading it to Owen almost every night!! As for Talk to the Snail, I like the way Clarke writes about the French. So funny and entertaining. I haven't been reading PS, I Love You just yet as I still haven't finish The Other Side of the Story by Marian Keyes. And plus I'm eyeing another book recommended by NNC member, Nik or was it Margaret (??), The Friday Kniting Club by Kate Jacobs. Having eyes bigger than the purse! We'll see how it goes 1st. Or may be I could ask my girl friend in London to get them for me when she comes for a visit the next time? Books in the UK are far less pricey than here in the Land of Moos. Mental note; I'll even ask her to get me Ribena!! YAY!! hehehehehehe.... I LOVE RIBENA!

One of the weird scultures along the stairway. Reminds me of the devil....

OH! Did anyone know that the Grimm Brothers was born in Hanau? Well I didn't but now I know! :D There's not much old buildings in Frankfurt or most of Germany for the fact is that most was bombed by the Alliance during WWII. Some that was left standing, was left as it is as a monuments. Perhaps as a reminder for the younger generations.

The Festung Marienbreg fortress from the pedestrian bridge

One of the many sculptures along the bridge

My aunt was like; "Ya, but did you know that due to this consistent "reminder" that the laws with regards to sexual offenders, especially towards paedophiles, are so lax?. Only less than 4 years prison and fine, that's it! As parents in Germany, I'm constantly worried about the safety of my son." Well, which parents doesn't? We worry that bad things can and will happen to our kids; on the way to and from school, while they are playing outside etc. But I do agree that laws against these people are kinda lax here in Europe. They'd say "oh, because they are sick we have to help them" OR even worst "oh, we can't harm them because they are human as well" etc etc. I mean come on!! Paedophiles are every where, even in Malaysia. But there at least we have the cane ruling, which is I am all for it! If not castrate them (which I don't think will happen anywhere at all!), cane them to remind them of what horrors they've put a child through. Locking them up and throw aways the key or trying to "cure" them will not do any good, coz tax payers money can be put into good use else where.

A very striking church, no?

Würzburg is a town full of churches! Here's one of them....

Opps.. looks like I've wandered. So back to; Hanau. Its pretty much a small town. It has however a US army base here. My uncle told us that they are soon to be relocated to the East of Germany. As for Frankfurt, its a very metropolitan city. As do all cities but it still has its charms, although it did not impress me very much. Perhaps we didn't really try to discover it.. Hmmm.... But Würzburg was really pretty, even when it drizzles and its cold out! The bridge for pedestrians over the Main river, the Würzburg Residence and the Festung Marienberg fortress was really something. The Residence was actually heavily destroyed during WWII, but it now its fully restored with minor restoration work still on going. It was owned by a prince-bishop, don't the name though. They even have a miniature Hall of Mirrors - I'm comparing with Versailles Palace of course, which is really something to see. Sorry, no pictures as photography isn't allowed inside. As for the Festung Marienberg fortress, by the time we got there it was closing time for the museum. But still we took a walk around the grounds just before heading back to Hanau. The way back was getting a little bit dark and snowy - not good for driving.

Würzburg town viewed from the fortress

Any ways, it was all good fun catching up on the latest (or old) family gossips with my aunt and uncle. The week pasts so fast and its time to go home for we'd be expecting a house guest the following week - one of hub's friend from Nice, France. And they are traveling with their 2 month old girl!! She's adorable but from what I see, but her dad seems to be complaining all the time about her crying. Hmm.... New father getting use to the idea of having a colicky baby.... We went through the same experience, so I guess its time for him to find out as well! ;)


Emily said...

Wow, so much history in all those buildings!

Very informative post!

Lody said...

love the photos you shared shanny. they're so inspiring!

reminds me of intramuros, manila in the philippines where the government kept on maintaining all those old buildings as tourist spots.