page blogs the 60th birthday celebrations of that little boy shown
on the beach at Colwyn Bay.
started rather early. With Jamie teaching in Crete it
proved impractical to have the family together for my
birthday so we all met up in Bavaria during the Easter
break. We stayed at Schliersee which is a nice
little town on the edge of a lake of the same name.
The town is not as chocolate box over-pretty as
some and all the better for it. The lake is stunningly
located on the edge of the Alps with towering mountains
at the south end whilst at the north end, where the
town is situated, the hills are rapidly diminishing
to the plains that lead to Munich.
Scott is teaching in Munich, Emma flew out to meet up
with him and arrived in Schliersee a few days before
us. Jamie & Danae arrived from Crete the day
before we got there.
our first full day, Scott took Emma and Danae in search
of skiable snow- it was melting fast locally so they
headed off Mayrhofen way to the Hintertux glacier. Margaret,
Jamie and I went for a walk by the lake but it was cold
and misty, like a November day at Grasmere, so Jamie,
more in need of rest than exercise, returned to base
whilst Margaret and I completed the 7 km round lake
drive up the valley to the next lake , Spitzingsee,
was rather unproductive as it was thick mist and we
could see virtually nothing.
next morning Margaret and I caught the ancient cable car up the little
hill by Schilersee where, from the restaurant at the
top, we watched the mist starting to clear.
a strange thing. In France we always feel like
Brits abroad, no matter how hard we try to speak the
language. Here, however, we were regularly mistaken
for Germans and I found my schoolboy Deutsch flooding
back and could even answer questions and give directions
as we walked back down the hill.
from hill top restaurant
back to Schliersee from Spritzingsee road
the bottom we were picked up by Scott and Emma for a
visit to Spitzingsee, which was a totally different
proposition from the day before. Excellent visibility,
plenty of sun although still cold and stunning Alpine
scenery and a nice lunch in a find old stubl. Germany's
largest skiing area starts here but was now pretty much
night we went into Munich (Jamie & Danae had gone
in the afternoon). Rail travel, on BOB (Bayrische
Oberland Bahn), is remarkably cheap. 18 euros
buys a return ticket for five people which also covers
the underground railways and buses in Munich.
met up with J&D outside the town hall and made our
way to the Englische Gardens (nearly murdering the bongo
player who insisted on inflicting his tuneless, senseless
bashings on thousands of people seeking peace and tranquility)
as we headed for the Chinese Pagoda Beer Garden. Having
consumed the mandatory beer and delicious bagel we crossed
the park to find a most remarkable sight. There
is a river that runs through the gardens, fairly
narrow but quite fast and deep. It emerges, seemingly
from nowhere, by a bridge where it hits a weir with
such force that it produces a standing wave on which
people were queuing up to surf, despite the fact it
Surfen, still Verboten
walked back into the centre and on to one of Munich's
oldest restaurants, very atmospheric, where I had SchweinHaxe-
basically a huge knuckle of pork with the most perfect
crackling. The youngsters decided to go on to the
Bürgerbräu Keller, famous for being an ancient beer hall and infamous
for it being used by Hitler to launch his campaign.
We made an excuse and asked BOB to take us home.
It was Easter and the hotel had been singing the
praises of the Easter market at Bad Tolz so we opted
to go there for the day. However first, Margaret and
I decided to drive round Tegernsee, a nearby and rather
larger lake, the southern end of which in particular
looked very upmarket.
regrouped at Bad Tolz, a lovely medieval town where
the pedestrianised area was full of traders, stalls
for the Easter Market. The trouble was, there
were no traders; the Easter Market was closed for Easter.
Or for Good Friday at least. Lots of people
walking up and down and muttering but no shopping to
be done. So we commandeered a table in the sun
at a restaurant and had a very pleasant lunch before
everyone bar me went to the baths to enjoy the spa.
Easter Market Closed for Easter
night we started the 47DON=60 celebrations proper. Champagne
on the terrace and then a stroll down to what we had
been assured was the best hotel in town, the Hof Haus
overlooking the lake where we enjoyed a splendid meal.
was home day but not until late on so we had plenty
of time for fun on the lake.
There were some rather
fine wooden motorboats so Scott took one with Emma,
Margaret and me whilst Danae took the wheel of the other
reflecting Scott, Margaret & Don
We had an hour to complete the circuit of
the lake and only one collision en route and then back
to the Hof Haus for lunch.
Boat Wheel reflecting Scott & Emma
Church and Hof Haus
left with Scott to return to Munich, taking Danae to
its airport. Jamie was coming home with us via
Salzburgh so we had a leisurely drive including an
amble and tea at Chiemsee, a quite vast lake.
was a real treat for us to have everyone together, especially
as that would not prove possible for my birthday. We
look forward to exploring Munich and the surrounding
area more fully once Emma moves there in August.