Sunday, April 15, 2012

AWOL in Regensburg

My brother and sister-in-law came to visit over Easter, during which time my laptop was re-assigned as the general entertainment centre. Now that the Irish whirlwind has swept back up to the Emerald Isle, I have time to post some pictures of our adventures over Easter.

First of all, I would like to mention Murphy's Law of Visitors and Weather. Before the Easter holidays, the weather was passable. Crisp and sunny, with evenings of weak sunlight and interesting skies:

This was a nobleman's residence, built next door to the archduke's castle (a clear case of brown-nosing if ever there was one.) Now it's used by the university and, as a former student there, I can confirm that one feels ever so much more erudite when one battles with the vagaries of German grammar in such an environment.
"Darling, the façade looks ever so dull. Columns are so last year."
"You're right, my angel. Let's throw up a few classical statues for kicks and laughs."
"Bravo, my sweet, bravo."
Now that I am With Child, I have taken to scoping out the local playgrounds and taking note of the level of danger the facilities pose. Swings, slides and monkey bars have never looked so threatening before - bear in mind, that this child will be the product of two extraordinarily clumsy and accident-prone people. I expect to get to know my paediatrician very well.  

As soon as my visitors arrived, the weather became cold, dark and wet. As it does. Not that we had planned to do very much with them, but it is nonetheless quite annoying when even the simplest outing turns into an extreme sport. This was the case when we visited Mr Gingerbread's hometown, Regensburg.

We were well-prepared: the plan was to have Easter brunch with the in-laws, so I baked lemon muffins, decorated eggs and knit a bunny hat for my two-month-old niece (because, frankly, why have children if not to dress them up in ridiculous festive outfits and take photos of them that will be later pulled out when new boy/girlfriends come to  visit). But the after-breakfast tour became a battle with the elements: I was cold. Coooooold. And Regensburg lies on the River Danube, so it's not the usual cold, it's the freezing, soggy, damp cold that seeps through layers of clothing and settles in your bones.

The Danube is a very scary river: it always looks angry, even in the middle of summer when the water level is low. I don't know how Strauss was inspired to write the Blue Danube waltz - this is not a civilised, gently-swaying body of water. It needs an Eminem song as its signature tune, or a piece of Death Metal:


So we sought refuge in various churches, like the Baroque St. Emmeram's Abbey. Now, I don't really like Baroque - I find it quite tacky. Gilded cherubs do not feature prominently in my décor. However, the Abbey has lots of interesting statues, like an almost-hidden wall panel of Queen Hemma (left) and several imposing panels featuring stout bishops or abbots (right).

Weirdest of all - for our modern eyes - were the relics of long-dead saints, laid out in saucily insouciant poses. I'm sure they were highly-treasured in their day, but nowadays they simply look quite creepy.

 And that's where we're going to stop for this evening, readers. Blogger is groaning under the weight of all these photos, so I'll post some more tomorrow, along with - yes, finally - some crafty projects.

P.S. Thank you to Tecrin for the blogging award! This deserves a post of its own - I'll have to put on my thinking cap, as it requires my doing some homework ...


Gracey is not my name.... said...

I've been behind on my reading and just caught up...CONGRATULATIONS! You are the third person "from Germany" (the others are military wives) in the past year or so that I know who have become pregnant! Yeah!

And that bone freezing cold...not fun! And those relics are pretty creepy!!!!!

Emma (GirlAnachronismE) said...

It looks like a beautiful trip, though you're right, that saint is a bit creepy!

Katie K said...

Great pictures! I especially like the statue of the queen and the comment about the columns.

Karen said...

your pictures are always so fascinating and become amusing when reading the comments! thank you for sharing... looking forward to the next batch!


Tecrin said...

Heh, you're welcome! ;)

Oh, that last picture is terrifying! It reminds me of my trip to Rome 7 years ago, there was a recently deceased priest propped up in a glass coffin similar to that one in the church next-door to where we were staying. I don't know what's more scary though, the wax-like figure in Rome or this one...