Local Heart, Global Soul

July 25, 2016

The Wasps Drive Us Inside To Interesting Discoveries…

Filed under: Uncategorized — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Following our yesterday’s post, we have gone volcano hunting in Germany.

Ok, an extinct volcano crater is more exacting but I fear not exciting enough for some.

When we get there Himself walks down a small path to find a map, the actual crater is another five to ten minutes walk more than I can manage.

Little Mr and Kiwi Daughter complain of being starving hungry, our little guest and Himself are the only ones keen to explore the crater that is out there somewhere.

Having passed a village a kilometre or two back, I suggest that the unwilling and unable get dropped off for lunch, then the energetic can get on with their walk without hassle.

We go into the small village of  Steffein, and find a restaurant called “Gastwirtschaft Sünnen”. The kids race to claim tables outside, and kids being kids, they claim a table each. That expanded into each trying to get me to sit with them so that the other will have “lost” and would have to shift, but when wasps appeared, both quickly disengaged the competition and we ended up sitting in side. At first glance the restaurant looks a lot like the many cafes and restaurants we have visited over the years, but once we take a better look we discover that this place is a lot more interesting… There are tables for diners and a bar for patrons who are just here to drink, and given that the place is a decent size I thought that that was it. A little later whilst I was going to the toilet, I discovered that there is also a massive reception hall complete with small stage. But of course that alone is not enough…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Gastwirtschaft Sünnen
Karl-Heinz & Brigitte Sünnen
Brunnenstr. 3
54597 Steffeln
Telefon: 06593 8510
Telefax: 06593 998424
E-Mail: info@gastwirtschaft-suennen.de
Gastwirtschaft Sünnen /Steffeln / DE.

July 24, 2016

A Crater So Flat It’s Almost Impossible To Find…

Filed under: GERMANY,PHOTOGRAPHY,Stadtkyll,Stadtkyll: Vulkangarten — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Although we thought that we must surely be some thousands of kilometres away from any distinguishing feature to do with tectonic plates, last summer in Germany, Himself informs me that he has read that there is an extinct volcano somewhere close by to our holiday park near Stadtkyll.

This is obviously not an old volcanic rim like I’m used to seeing in New Zealand, with a  Mount Taranaki looking like the twin sister of Japan’s Mount Fiji.

It’s also nothing like the steep, sharply jagged volcanic rims of the ancient volcanoes that make up Christchurch, New Zealand’s Port Hills and flooded Lyttelton and Akaroa volcanoes harbours.

This is apparently a small undulating series of tiny hills, or even less than that, that make up a crater that it’s possible to completely drive past unawares unless there was signage to tell you otherwise.

Of course this is Family Kiwidutch and even with Our Lady Of The Tom Tom “helping” out, we were quite able to get thoroughly lost. At one point I thought I saw a fleeting sign on a road heading left and told Himself that maybe we had better turn around and check it out. He told me that both an earlier road sign and the Tom Tom agreed that it had to be somewhere ahead of us to the right, and that with a car full of restless kids did we really want to go to the hassle?

He wasn’t keen. So we drove on and ended up with signage that basically took us around in a complete circle, literally back to that exact one I had seen earlier. That alone could have saved us another three-quarters of an hour and even grumpier kids. Oh well. One thing is for certain, this is a blink and you’d miss it geographical feature so Himself’s mission to find it had better have been worth it. We have found the sign, at least that’s a start!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

A Round-a-bout with large metal cattle sculptures in the centre…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Suddenly approximately forty motorcycle riders pass by, clearly a club, many with matching hi-vis jackets… (I missed the first riders, too slow with the camera).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It’s here somewhere

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 23, 2016

The Daring Continues…

This is my last post about the tree climbing adventure orienteering course our kids and their guest did last summer in our German Landal Wirfttal holiday park.  Rens, our Dutch instructor who we already knew from doing archery and pistol shooting earlier in the week, let us keep our options open because he said we really needed to see the tree climbing course first before adding Little Mr and his guest to our final activity bill for the day (they were still fully kitted out with all the safety equipment from abseiling).

As it turned out both of them stayed firmly on the ground for most of the time we were here, they were simply not tall enough to get past the bigger gaps between obstacles, which is exactly the problem that Rens predicted. They did however plead and beg to be allowed to do the flying fox (zip wire) and so after a little needed help to get up to the required platform, they whistled down the incline into the waiting hands of one of the other helping parents below.

As usual some of my photographs have been edited for family (and guest) privacy reasons. These activities made their day, all three kids have overcome fears to do something new and we are really proud of them.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 22, 2016

Getting Into The Thick Of The Forest…

Following yesterday’s posts, last summer our kids had two opportunities to do for want of  better description: “a tree climbing obstacle course”. This time my vantage point on higher ground allowed me to get some interesting close-ups of the course whilst the  group were running through some safety rules and instructions in the bottom of the gulley below. As per the Luxemburg set-up, the trees are protected from the tight wires of the course by the inclusion of additional wooden stakes. This course has many additional features: tires, ropes that have to be crawled under before you can get onto a platform, and more rope walking and sitting sections, all of which later produced buckets of squeals and laughter. Here I get to zoom in on the intricacies of the course…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 21, 2016

Overcoming Obstacles A Second Time Around…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We didn’t realise it earlier during our stay last summer, but there is also a tree climbing obstacle course at the German Landal Wirfttal holiday park, where we were staying.

We would not have been able to use it though because rain forced the cancellation of almost all of the outdoor activities.

Now that the outdoor centre was open again for business, we signed up the kids for both the abseiling activity and the tree climbing / obstacle course.

The participating group walked to the course, it’s a short distance as the crow flies from the spot that they abseiled off earlier in the day.

Himself and I however needed to take a car ride down the road away from the park and then loop back  off a larger track to end up on yet another back track behind them.

My spot next to the car is on a track in the middle of a large hill, looking down on the obstacle course in a steep gully between us and Reception. Good parts of the course in the trees are almost level with where I am standing and zooming in gets me to the more distant parts of the course, and down to the floor of the gulley.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

One of the families we saw earlier at the archery course is also here: their offspring are both older and more daring than ours so one of their boys leads the way and shows the group how it is done.

The Luxemburg experience has given Kiwi Daughter a lot of confidence,  she did this twice round.

Her verdict was that although this course was far shorter than the Luxemburg one,  many of the obstacles were either more interesting in design or harder, so in the end she wasn’t sure which course she enjoyed more.
There are several dramatic end points to the courses that the group did today, the tamer of the two is the flying fox that Little Mr and his guest enjoyed, the scarier option is a being attached to a sort of rope swing contraption and lowered down after one or two gigantic swings.

Once Kiwi Daughter saw the lads of the other family tackle the big rope swing, she determined that she would give it a go too, letting out a seriously decent scream on the first leg of the descent just for the heck of it. After the session ended with a group de-briefing, they took a side track short-cut back to the Reception building, Himself and I retraced the track and road back in the car and met up with some tired kids. We were as proud as they were that both obstacles and fears had been overcome today.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

tree2 climb 6a (Small)

 

July 20, 2016

When Courage Is On Display On The Rock Face…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Spending some family holiday time in Germany last summer was an excellent idea that did not always go according to plan.

The main problem was the weather, more specifically rain and lots of it, but near the end of the first week things improved and the kids were bursting to let off steam.

For outdoor activities we didn’t have to look too far, the Landal Wirfttal holiday park offers a few on-site, so we sign up all three of the kids for abseiling.

The session starts with a run-down of safety procedures and instruction on how to handle the equipment and then the group disappears up the trail that takes them to the top of a small bluff directly behind the park’s Reception building.

I took a lot of close up photos of the kids as they made their way down the face of the hill, and a short video of the first boy (a very confident kid by the look of things) but am having troubles logging into my YouTube account for a few weeks now so will add it later when I sort that out.

Little Mr and his guest were the smallest of the group and shorter legs made for a few interesting manoeuvres as they each came down, Little Mr was by far the more confident of these two, his steps being decisive even when he approached areas of difficulty. His guest had never abseiled before and was willing but very apprehensive.

Her descent was more of a centimetre by centimetre approach and slipped over at the point where the kids had to lean as far back as they could to negotiate a large rock that had a large gap beneath it was where her confidence crumbled.

Of course the instructor stopped her from falling immediately but she was shaken and so Himself donned a safety helmet and scrambled as high as he could to help her the last part of the way.

All kudos to her, she doggedly continued albeit very slowly until she reached Himself, a true accomplishment if you know that this little girl is as far from tomboyish as it is possible to get, and is seriously shy by nature.

Every kid gained a hearty round of applause from the waiting parents below, but she got an additional cheer because it was plain to see that this was a really big deal and that she showed a lot of courage in daring to do this at all. I heard that she was close to tears when she replied to me that she was ok, but bit her lip and determined to see things through. Little Mr didn’t say anything and acted like nothing was amiss but immediately was extra reassuring and generally worked hard to make her feel ok about the slip, and soon she was shyly smiling again. Both of our children show a lot of compassion for others, but even at a very early age Little Mr has shown us that he is unusually attuned to the feelings of others.

He can rough-house with boys no problem but gets on fabulously well with girls too, and this friend, a serious “girly-girl” who dresses primarily in pink, loves creative hobbies over anything dirty or strenuous seems like a rather odd play-fellow but they seem to never ever get on one another nerves and none of the parents have ever heard them fight or have a cross word. They seem to accept each others differences no problem and get on fine playing in her garden, with walkie-talkies on the street, building things from carton or paper, playing Lego or Minecraft. Little Mr preferred to stay with his friend than to take a second go on the course so we all watched whilst a few of the others and Kiwi Daughter saw if they would do even better a second time around.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

 

July 19, 2016

WiFi & Other Disappointments: But A Cute Dog Helps Return Smiles…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The main peeve that we had about the Landal Wirfttal holiday park in Germany, was the lack of advertised internet or phone signal at our accommodation.

We discovered that a very weak phone signal could be picked up by walking several minutes around the road, but even then a single attempted telephone conversation was interrupted by three or four complete cut-outs and redials.

A media free fortnight would have been an excellent idea had we planned for it and had the weather been better, but with me intending to sit quietly and write a blog post or two, Himself needing to keep in touch with several clients so that he could advise on amendments they thought they would be needing to make (before we left), and all of us needing to be in contact with the rest of the family due to the frailty of my then ninety-three year old mother-in-law, it was more than just a hassle.

The kids of course thought that their world had ended when Netflix, Spotify, Facebook, Minecraft, FaceTime and the like were all suddenly cut off. Kiwi Daughter, who’s invited guest friend failed to materialise due to cross-planning and double booking with guest’s family holiday, took the entire situation especially hard, grumpily declaring anything and everything here a complete and utter disaster (except the tree climbing adventure of the previous day).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We heard many teenage girls her own age speaking Dutch around the park but she refused to try and pick up a conversation and make friends for the holiday with them, I even heard one family with teenage girls speaking English, actually lamenting that they had no one else who spoke English to hang out with.

I spoke to their mother (who was with them) and they were keen to meet Kiwi Daughter. Sadly she also vetoed this because the oldest girl was one year younger than her “and they were soooo young”. Not cool thus.

Of course all of the Dutch girls around the park would have already started English lessons but my experience over and over again in the Netherlands, even with nephews and nieces who know me well, is that they are afraid to speak in front of a native speaker because they are afraid of how many mistakes they make.

I have always encouraged them that it doesn’t matter, I make mistakes in Dutch all the time but I speak to them in Dutch anyway. They willingly acknowledge that but are still painfully shy about speaking English with native speakers. It appears to be a national trait.

With Wifi only available at Reception we therefore went to one of the few seats in a tiny corner there to try and log on for a little while. There are enough plugs due to an extension board provided, but the problem is usually space… and that Reception opens at 09:00 and closes at 17:30.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

There are a few picnic tables outside where you can sit and catch the internet signal out-of-hours, but I think I’ve mentioned the problem of excessive rain enough in recent posts for you to guess that that was no easy option either.  It’s frustrating if you need internet in the evening and it’s raining.

The car was our next option but of course there was no power point for the laptop there so I had to do some serious time management (not easy with pain drugs and close to zero concentration skills.)  I made the mistake of sitting in the early morning in the car, listening to music on the radio as I typed.

You can guess what happened then… Himself came to retrieve me, turned the key and of course the battery was flat. We had excellent luck that the park manager came by just at that moment and rescued us.

Himself and immediately made a quick run into Stadtkyll to charge the battery a little and returned with fresh croissants which placated the kids back at the house who we couldn’t phone to let them know that we could not get back right to them as soon as planned. Needless to say I learned my lesson and typed in silence from then on.

Another occasion on a fine day, I visited Reception to check my email and the lady next to me had a sweet little dog. I’m not a dog lover (another story) but this one was on a lead and behaved itself. It also drew my attention because of it’s photogenic qualities so I asked the owner if I might please take photos for my artistic reference files.

The reply was an enthusiastic “Yes”, and not having animals of our own I probably overloaded on the opportunity. Ergo, one hundred and one (or just seems like it) doggie poses for your viewing pleasure…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 18, 2016

We Are Being Mooned At!!!

Filed under: GERMANY,Landal Wirfttal,PHOTOGRAPHY,Stadtkyll — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Last summer after a day out in nearby Luxemburg, we arrive back at our holiday base of the Landal Wirfttal holiday park in Germany.

As per my posts of the past two days, we ate out in the village of Stadtkyll near by the park and everyone remarked that at least the rain of recent days had finally stopped.

Before bed we were treated to a lovely sunset which I failed to capture very well with the camera, night photography for me is a really hit and miss affair and is more good luck than good management.

I can only let you know now that the actual colours in the sky were far deeper than what turned out here, the reds were redder, blues bluer and generally all the colours were more intense in real life.

The moon was out and after taking at least thirty photographs I managed to include a few that were not just grey fuzzy messes, and I spied a moth on the window ledge that also had a great many colours in it than eventually turned out in my photographs.

The other thing about the moth that was unusual was it’s size, it being easily the biggest moth I had ever seen.

At a guess I would say that it was about five or six centimetres long (approx. two inches) and I would have grabbed something to put next to it for scale except that I was too busy trying to told the camera still enough and take photographs in the near darkness and I assumed that any delay would mean that it would have already flown off. A spot of luck meant that several of the first shots I took were sharp, and my assumptions were correct, no sooner had the first half dozen clicks passed the shutter when it took off into the night.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 17, 2016

Taking Getting Stuffed To A Whole New Level…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Following yesterday’s post where we were eating dinner at the Balkanland restaurant in Stadtkyll, I mentioned that there was something in the room that grabbed everyone’s attention.

Our little group had been put into a separate room which we had all to ourselves, well… sort of all to ourselves.

This region, like many rural European ones, have a long history of hunting wild boar, deer, pheasant, rabbits, geese and the like so a few antlers on the walls are nothing out of place.

It appears though that someone here has a taxidermy hobby so all manner of smaller animals and birds adorn the walls.

It feels like we are not alone… there are little glass eyes everywhere.

I have no clue if there were once cherished family pets or recycled roadkill (the squirrel doesn’t look like it’s taking a very natural position) or if these are little dear departed donated by friends for the hobbyists practice efforts.

I did find the duckling especially weird I have to admit. I’m not sure that the taxidermists skills are of the highest level, that said I have never had even the slightest inclination to take a newly deceased creature and turn it into a stuffed living room ornament. The other objects in the room were far less creepy: historical photographs of this building of previous centuries and a framed technical drawing of a carriage were less intrusive and more my style.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 16, 2016

An Obstacle Course Of A Meal After A Heavy Day…

Filed under: FOOD,German Cuisine,GERMANY,PHOTOGRAPHY,Stadtkyll — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Last Summer Family Kiwidutch plus a little guest, holidayed in Germany, in a Landal Holiday Park close to the small town of Stadtkyll.

Several days of bad weather drove us a short drive south to Luxemburg, where in drier conditions the three kids went on what I can only explain as a “tree climbing obstacle orienteering course” tethered by harnesses to cables as the negotiated the multi levelled courses through the trees.

After a busy day of tree adventures we returned to Stadtkyll close to half past eight in the evening, too late to get back to the park and eat.

We had driven by the Balkanland Restaurant quite a few times already since it was on our main route into town, and seeing a car park full of vehicles, decide to ask if we are not too late to eat because the kids are ravenous.

We are welcomed inside and get a table in a side room all to ourselves. There is a salad bar and a long menu but we hope to have chosen some kid friendly options. I order fish, Kiwi Daughter and Little Guest share a schnitzel and fries, Himself a mixed grill, Little Mr something as close to a grilled cheese sandwich as possible.

With tables of guests finishing their meals and leaving, and the restaurant generally emptying out, the salad bar selection is getting thin, but we manage to find plenty to suit our taste, Himself opting for a heap of pickled veggies and myself for a more traditional salad with tomato etc.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Little Mr got rather a shock when his “toasted sandwich” was a meat heavy offering of ham smothered in enough melted cheese to isolate an overheating nuclear reactor: everyone laughingly had a taste and helped out a little but even then, hungry as we were, hardly a dent was made.

We joked half seriously that it was so filling that divided it up it could have served a dozen hungry kids or fed Little Mr for the entire duration of our holiday.

Caught off guard by the unfamiliar appearance of his meal, a tired Little Mr at first complained but once he tasted it all protests ceased, his parting comment of the night being a request to come here again please.

For our mega-picky eater this is a sign of high praise so a thumbs up for this point alone.

The rest of the meals were fine, there was plenty of it, in fact too much for us to manage but I suppose better too much than too little. The fish, schnitzel and grill: not the best we have ever eaten but on the other hand were very far from the worst, so all in all we agreed that this would be a restaurant we would come back to but not one to make it to our all time favourites list.

Basically family pleasing fare that fills a gap no matter how hungry you might be after a day walking in the forest, cycling, or other activity.

The staff were friendly, our one fractionally negative note was that although we mentioned that the kids were very tired and hungry when we arrived, it took ages for them to even come and take our order, and when we asked for the children’s meals to come as quickly as possible, that also took an inordinate amount of time, which made me wonder if we had been forgotten about in the side room to some extent.

This invariably accounted for Little Mr’s grumpiness at the beginning of the meal. That said, the staff were friendliness itself once the food arrived so… “C’ est la vie” I suppose. There was one thing about the room we were in that grabbed everyone’s attention though…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Next Page »

The Rubric Theme. Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 947 other followers