Monday, September 17, 2007

Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Rothenburg 159

We are in Rothenburg now.  We are here for 4 nights.  As I type it is the 2nd night, just after 10 pm (although to post this may take awhile to type...).

What a beautiful city.  Rothenburg is an old medieval town surrounded by a castle wall.  We decided to spend a few extra days here to just relax.  It can be a pain to pack the bags every other day to go off to a new town, and basically waste some of your day traveling, and we would rather just enjoy the stay awhile.

The hotel we are staying at, the Kosterstuble, is beyond words.  Just take a look. 

Rothenburg 007

We finally found some WiFi.  It's at the hotel, free and not great but better than paying 8 Euro for 1 hour.  Everytime I tried an upload a batch of photo's to flickr they bounce so I'm left to only loading up a few at a time for the blog posts.  I'll have to wait to get home to upload them all.

We went on this very fun Night Watchman's Tour the first night where we learned all about the town from a unique perspective.  The guy giving the tour has been doing it for 15 years or something.  He dressed the part, dressed in a cloaked robe with halberd in one hand and candlelit lantern in the other.  He gave the tour in English, albeit German accent, and interspersed it with some very funny commentary.  He even has a DVD if your interested, including some clips on the web if your interested in hearing his voice, maybe we'll pick up a copy while we are here.

The food at our hotel is good and we had a nice dinner the first night here outside.  Afterwards we went to this cool, Lord of the Rings, Hobbit-like place for drinks.  I'm enjoying this drink called Radler.  It's a mixture of beer and lemonade.

Today we did more exploring.  Up to the top of the 200 foot tower in the center of town.  We did the full 1.5 mile hike around the town on the castle wall, which is where I took the photo at the top of the post.  Also toured the Town Vaults and saw some dungeons, armor, etc.  Went through a couple of old churches and looked at things that were built, made or constructed bake in the 1400-1500s.  This stuff is old and it gives you an appreciation for what people were able to achieve so long ago.

I have to say that even though the Euro is stronger than the dollar, some things seem substantially cheaper here.  4 drinks at the bar and our bill is only 12-14 Euro.  I can get two scoops of ice cream in a sugar cone for 1 Euro.  And that's what we've been doing alot of.  Stopping at a small cafe.  Heidi has coffee and I have hot chocolate or tea along with a baked good (and there's so many baked goods here). 

We've had beautiful weather since we've been here.  Tonight was the first time it has rained and it only did so for about an hour after dinner.  We retired early tonight to just do some reading and more relaxing.

Tomorrow we need to do some laundry.  Then Heidi's going to get a manicure.  I on the other hand am going to see the best museum in the world of torture devices.  It's called the Medieval Crime Museum or Kriminalmuseum.  Also take a look at a craftsman museum by going through a house built in 1270.  That's old.

I'll leave you with this photo of the fountain in Market Platz. 

Rothenburg 009

In medieval times the fountain provided water to the populace.  Notice the the pipes coming from the mouths of the faces on all four sides.  You'd move the metal rail you see so that the water would go into your bucket.  Also if you look at the yellow building on the right, you'll see what looks like a board sticking out almost at the top.  It's the old pulley used to haul grain, salt, etc, to the top of the building.  Every building here has these relics.  They stored about a years worth of dried goods here to keep it out of the rain, the roads used to be muddy and filthy (yes both animal and human waste) and for use in times of defense when the castle was under siege.

Danke schon!

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