Germany Ho!

28 07 2008

I am excited to say that my next adventure will lead me to Germany! I will be spending about 3 weeks visiting my sister and brother-in-law who live in Stuttgart. Charles will be joining me for about half of this trip and we have some exciting trips planned.

Source: U.S. State Department

We will mostly be touring southern Germany, specifically Baden Wurttemburg (Black Forest) and Bavaria. We are planning to visit Freiburg, Stuttgart, and Munchen (Munich). Then we will meander down the Romantic Road, stopping in Wurzburg, Rothenburg, and Fussen. Charles and I will head to Paris for a few days as well.

We are most excited to visit Rothenburg, a preserved medieval city with walls, and Fussen, the town nearest Mad King Ludwig’s fabulous Neuschwanstein Castle. Charles is also looking forward to going to the Hofbrauhaus in Munchen.

Pictured above is Neuschwanstein Castle. Image released under a Wikimedia Commons license.

Best of all, we will be spending time with family and hanging out at outdoor German beer gardens! I will have to brush up on my high school German though. Meine Deustch ist nicht gut!


Historic Frederick, Maryland

8 07 2008

There is no better way to spend America’s Independence Day than with family in a place like Frederick, Maryland. Frederick, founded in 1745, has a wonderfully interesting historic district. The historic district is a 50-block town within a large city and features 18th and 19th century architecture, dozens of historic sites, and a very walkable downtown area with lots of cute boutiques and cafes. The city is part of the Historic National Road, and was significant in the Civil War as well as the Revolutionary War. Frederick is approximately an hour west of Baltimore, Maryland, and about 30 minutes from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

My in-laws live in the historic district, and we had a lovely stroll in the area during July 4th weekend.

Below you can see former carriage houses and slave quarters viewed from Second Street.

Close-up of the carriage houses:

The carriage houses have been converted into apartments.

Here is the front of the “big house” that was served by the carriage hosues. It is in the same square as town hall.

A beautiful historic house at the corner on Second Street.

There are remnants of the last two centuries all over the historic district.

The Town Hall

Historic homes in the square surrounding town hall:

Everything is so clean and tidy!

Down another street, we see more historic buildings. They are everywhere.

Original windows that are at least 100 years old.

The sidewalks are lined with brick.

A converted old firehouse is given new life.

We also walked down Patrick Street, the main downtown area that is full of specialty shops, boutiques, and restaurants. Yum, I spy a candy/chocolate store!

Alas, even historic Frederick has a Starbucks.

I love all the eclectic shops here – they are perfect for browsing. The street looks so tidy it looks like a movie set.

This used to be Frederick’s Opera Hall before it was converted into a modern day brewery.

A very cool looking building.

This must be one of the cutest shoe repair shops I have ever seen.

Olde Towne Tavern

Does adding “e” to the end of words make it sound more olde tyme?

Here’s an interesting store

The General Store

Another beautiful historic home

Turning off Patrick Street, we stroll down a residential side street and find quaint stoops and houses.

You can see from bricks on the side of this building that an addition was built right over the old house.

What a handsome street of houses!

We passed by this old church built in a nouveau medieval style. Picture: United Methodist Church

The local rec center is shaped like a castle, but I’m not sure if this is historic.

Can you spot the new addition?

While I don’t know much about historical American architecture, it was still fun to walk around looking at all the historic buildings in the area. Fortunately, I had an architectural historican with me on the walk who could point out all the interesting buildings.

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