germany_sm02We have traveled in Germany numerous times during our adventure motorcycle travels on our BMW motorcycles. We each had been to Germany at differing times prior to meeting each other. We have toured with Verna’s parents and Jim live near Frankfut am Main as a child.

Our first trip to Germany took us to the Nurburg Ring for three days of “Besser Farharn mit BMW” in June 1999. This was a three day course put on by BMW which taught the participants how to drive the Ring. It was interesting and we had a lot of fun but we were a bit disappointed because we expected to receive some instruction about riding and this information was not forthcoming.

 The following year we attended the BMW enduro school at the BMW Enduro Park in Hechlingen. We had ridden on some unimproved roads in the past but neither of us had had any experience with off road motorcycle riding. It did not take long for us to learn that the opening remarks from the instructor were very true when he told the group that the one thing we could count on during our three days of instruction was that we would fall from our motorcycles.

In June of 2001 we returned to the Nurburg area to explore it further. This area is known as the Eifel. We returned in July of 2001 and explored the Taunus area (north of Frankfurt). In August 2001 we ventured into the Rhine-Westphalia area (includes Düsseldorf and Cologne). In May 2002 we entered from northwest Austria and explored the western portion of the Castle Road (Rothenburg to Mannheim).

spargel und erdbeerEven though we speak no German, we love staying in this country. Perhaps it is because the closest to American values, infrastructure, and lifestyle. The roads and countryside are beautiful, making it a haven for motorcycling. Then there is the food, the beer and the wine - what more needs to be said. Our favorite time is in the spring when the weather is warm but not yet hot. In the springtime is also when the spargel (asparagus) is harvested and all the restaurants feature fantastic dishes with spargel as the highlight. Of course, the huge, white spargel is the most prized as it is tender and light in flavor. Our personal favorite is a hearty and rich bowl of spargelcremesuppe (a very creamy asparagus soup). In all the markets as well as in roadside stands, you will find lots of fresh spargel. As the photo at left shows, springtime is the time for fresh strawberries as well as spargel. The price shown was 4.50 Euro (about $.91US at the time) for a kilo (2.24 lb.) of the biggest, fattest spears.

Octoberfest Trivia: Did you know that the word Octoberfest is better known worldwide than any other German word? According to worldwide research, it is (followed by Autobahn and Bratwurst). Octoberfest always starts in September and its timing is dictated by the ironclad rule the it must last 16 days and end on the first Sunday in October. We haven’t attended an Octoberfest yet, but there is still time...

renovation coverRenovation German Style: Another interesting phenomenon we found in Germany is concerning construction sites. All over Europe, it is commonplace for buildings under construction or renovation to be covered in a mesh supported by the scaffolding (we assume this is to keep building materials inside the construction site). But several places in Germany we have seen special mesh which has a picture of the finished building on it, as shown in the picture to the right (the portion showing the arched windows in front is the mesh panel). This appears to be much more attractive while still serving the original purpose. What a great idea!


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