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Rheingauer Weinwoche in Wiesbaden, Part Zwei…

Bill and I had a productive morning. After I ranted in my regular blog, I decided to practice guitar and then change the strings. Changing the strings on my guitar is a major pain, mostly because of the types of gears I have on my headstock. It takes me awhile and sometimes involves some pain. However, as I just recently made a video in which I played guitar, I realized that a string change was probably long overdue… so I did that, and Bill bottled his latest homebrew.

I recently joined a couple of swell Facebook groups devoted to day trips, mostly because I have really missed seeing and writing about interesting places on the weekends, like we did in Stuttgart. It’s time we got back into the swing of doing that, so we can get more out of being in Germany, and maybe I’ll start making ad revenue again. I saw some places that interested me, but as we didn’t get to see the whole Wiesbaden wine fest on Friday, plus it was already the afternoon when we were ready to venture out, we decided to go back downtown.

We walked a bit around the much calmer fest, slowed down a bit by the bright sun and intense heat. This current heatwave probably isn’t the worst I’ve experienced, even in Germany, but it has been going on for awhile… I’m pretty tired of it. It makes me cranky. The weather channel says we will probably have some rain– finally– this week. I sure hope so. The heat is a real bummer.

I got some more photos and we decided to visit the Barth Weingut stall, because last year, we went to a wine stand in Hofheim and bought some of Barth’s wines to take home. They were, and still are, very good. I have to say, I liked them better than the wines we had on Friday night at Weingut Hamm. But then, I wasn’t the one choosing those wines. We had a pretzel and spundekäs (cheese dip), a local specialty out of Mainz.

We also had a late lunch– a hot smoked salmon sandwich for me, and pulled pork for Bill. While we were enjoying our wines from Barth, a couple sat at the table behind us and proceeded to chain smoke. I was a bit annoyed, since there were quite a few empty tables nearby where they could have sat and not fouled the air with their cigarette smoke. Then, I was dumbfounded when the female half of the couple donned a heavy duty FFP2 face mask! They were sitting there smoking for a good half hour, but then she decides she wants to be a COVID-19 warrior? Amazing! But that’s one of the mysterious things about living in Germany. Some folks are the crunchiest, most health conscious people you’ll ever meet. But they love to light up, especially while they enjoy local wines and beers.

Anyway, we stayed for about three hours, hearing the vague strains of live music as we enjoyed Rieslings by Barth. I don’t know if we’ll go back again, even though the fest is running until next weekend. I am a little tired of wine fests, and would really like to do something different, in a different town. But we can’t always go to the Wiesbaden Wine Festival, while those other activities are usually available.

Below are today’s photos… they aren’t as exciting, because today was a lot more laid back and low key. I kind of like it that way, to be perfectly honest. I am not a big fan of crowds and super busy events.

It was kind of a low key time to be visiting the fest, but that’s kind of the way I like it. Hopefully, next week, we’ll find a nice Tierpark or something. We’ll see.

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Street food in Hofheim equals presents for my ass…

I was feeling kind of lazy today, and probably could have been talked into staying home. But then I noticed Hofheim, which is a town very close to our village of Breckenheim, was having a street food fest. I have to admit that I love German street food fests. They are always an interesting mix of kid friendly activities and adult beverages. Also, there’s usually live music and good food. I don’t care that much about kid friendly activities, of course, but I am all about adult beverages, good live music, and street food… especially if it involves empanadas. So off we went in the Volvo, since I didn’t feel like messing with the Mini’s last decade sound system. I think it’s time to shop for a new car. The Mini is 13 years old and can’t keep up with technology. 😉

We parked in a different area of the Chinon Centre, which is the local shopping mall. We easily found the fest, which was/still is going on downtown. There was a nice turnout of vendors, with everything from Indonesian to Colombian food. We didn’t actually eat a lot, because much of what I saw being served was in pretty large portions. I may look like I can eat a lot, but actually, I am more of a drinker. 😉 So I ended up just having a couple of empanadas… but I did learn about a fruit that was new to me… and especially about the hilariously rude names people in the UK use for it.

Anyway, below are some photos and videos… It was a lot of fun, and a nice way to waste the afternoon. I really liked the guy who was playing guitar in the last hour or so of our visit. He seemed equally influenced by Sting, Santana, and Mark Knopfler. All are worthy, in my opinion. And his live guitar playing beat the ever loving hell out of the crappy Euro trash trance music that was playing. I do love Europe, but the pop music here often sounds like a mixture of dance music and late 80s era Mentos commercials.

As you can see, we had lots of choices for food and drink, and there was plenty for kids to do. The weather was perfect, not too hot or windy. My only complaint is that they needed another umbrella or two. Also, I wish there had been smaller portions at some of the food trucks. But really, those were minor complaints. It was a really nice afternoon. Hofheim rocks!

Medlar fruit, AKA Mispelfrucht in German, is interesting. Apparently, in Britain, some people give it vulgar names because of how it looks. Seems about right for my peeps. They call it “monkey’s arse” or “open arse” or whatever. It is, however, considered to be a very tasty fruit. Today was the first time I have ever encountered it in my lifetime.

I would have liked to have tried other stuff, but it was quite hot, sunny, and bright outside, and Bill was worried about the dogs. So we came home. We had a good time, though, even if we were near an American lady who was very loudly letting everyone know where she’s from. I guess eight years of life in Germany has made me sensitive to loud talking.

I did get a few videos of Bill, which also captured the guitar player. He was pretty good.

Don’t mind our silly banter. I have the best husband ever.

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Germany

Street food fest in Tübingen

We had absolutely beautiful weather today, as well as a range of things we could do to spend our time.  The Cannstatter Volksfest has just started, as well as the historic fest in the Schlossplatz in downtown Stuttgart.  I wasn’t in the mood to put on a dirndl and face the crowds, though, so we decided to go to the Street Food Fest in Tübingen.

Before we left the house, Bill went to the store to pick up some essentials.  He came back about an hour later and I noticed he was standing outside.  I opened the door to ask him what he was doing.  He looked very amused as he told me our elderly German neighbor had just driven up in her car while blaring 70s era Van Halen.  She sat in her car and listened to the whole song before finally exiting her vehicle.  I must admit, even though I didn’t want to share walls with anyone, it’s been a pleasure living next to this lady and her husband.  I’m going to miss them.

This Street Food fest, which started at noon today and runs until 10:00pm tonight, will have the same hours tomorrow.  It’s being held at the fairgrounds in Tübingen.  Last time we went there was for Afrika Fest 2016.  Having now attended a few Street Food fests and Afrika Fests, I think I like those grounds the best.  There’s plenty of free parking and it’s nice and open, so there’s room for tables and crowds are less of a problem.  Below are some pictures from our visit today.  We managed to enjoy some really great food in a nice environment.

We parked next to this classic Fiat.  I had to get a picture for all the car buffs.

 

The line to go in.  It costs two euros per person.  The toilets are outside of the gates, so if you need to use them while you’re enjoying the food trucks, get your hand stamped.  A security guy checked my purse to make sure I wasn’t packing heat.

 

I got a kick out of the art on the portalet truck.

 

We took a stroll around the grounds to see what was being offered.  I saw a lot of burgers and barbecue sandwiches, but I also saw some more exotic stuff.  There was a food truck offering Ecuadorean food, for instance, as well as one selling ostrich sandwiches.  There were also quite a few trucks offering sweets.  One truck was specializing in cocktails, too.

Cocktails anyone?

This was where I got my “sanduche”– basically a delicious pork sandwich with either spicy or peanut sauce.  Bill and I both agreed it was better than his “smoky bird” ostrich sandwich.

 

My delicious “sanduche”… This was a real hit!  They were also selling ceviche.

 

Ostrich is actually pretty tasty…

Laf Laf, the awesome Middle Eastern restaurant we tried a few weeks ago, also had a truck and was offering chicken shwarma, which we split.

 

This guy was selling “deer burgers”…

And he was roasting the deer carcass there for everyone to see.  I don’t eat deer meat, but I think Bill would have liked it.

 

Lots of people brought their dogs.  I couldn’t help but notice this adorable little girl who looked like a fox.  I looked her up online and I think she might be a Finnish Spitz.  She was so cute and well-behaved!

I told Bill I wanted to try a chocolate pretzel.  He brought it back and told me to be prepared for a mess.  I looked in the bag and said, “Holy shit…” a little louder than I meant to.  A German guy sitting nearby overheard me and started cracking up as I looked at this messy treat.  I must admit, it tasted delicious!  But they didn’t even give us napkins.  I heard a German woman say, “So lecker!”  I turned to see her and a friend struggling to eat one of these things.  It was worth the mess.

 

They did have other flavors, too.  We brought the rest of it home for later.

 

For once, I decided to have a non alcoholic beverage.  This was a cola, lemonade, and orange drink.  It was surprisingly good.

 

Donut truck!  We picked up six for tomorrow morning.

After a couple of hours, we decided to head home.  Our route took us near where we used to live when we came to Germany the first time.  Below are a few pictures of the Wurmlinger Chapel, which I used to be able to see from my backyard.

You can walk to the top of the hill and look in the chapel.  We never did that when we lived near the chapel, but we did go up there a few years ago.  The view is lovely.  

If you like street food from food trucks, I would definitely recommend visiting the festival in Tübingen today or tomorrow.  It’s worth the trip!

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Pockets of charm and a street food fest in Reutlingen…

I was inspired to visit the city of Reutlingen today after someone in one of the local Facebook groups asked about cute towns near Stuttgart to take guests.  A couple of months ago, I wrote a blog post about “cute towns near Stuttgart” and mentioned Reutlingen, although it was not one of the towns I’ve spent a lot of time visiting.  Today, I decided I wanted to walk around Reutlingen a bit more, at least so I could use my own photos of the downtown area in my previous post about “cute towns”.

It so happens that there’s a street food fest going on at the Festplatz in Reutlingen this weekend, so Bill and I decided to stop there first for a little lunch.  The street food fest consists of lots of food trucks offering a wide variety of foods– everything from vegan cuisine to beef barbecue.  Below are some photos I got of the festival.  It will continue tomorrow and runs tonight until 10:00pm.

Black Forest cupcakes!

A bouncy house for the kids!

Bill got a chili chocolate brownie at the above truck.  He says it’s probably the hottest thing he’s ever eaten in Germany.

The bathrooms were clean and free of charge to use.  Parking was also free.

We got some killer beef barbecue at this truck.

Portuguese pastries!

We didn’t have any wine… but we could have had some if we wanted it.

We finally decided on barbacoa, which was prepared by someone actually from Mexico.  She was impressed when Bill spoke Spanish to her.  These tacos were spicy and delicious!  They were definitely not German style Mexican!

That killer beef barbecue with spicy and mild sauces, a little kraut, and some carrots…

Obligatory shot of Bill.  After the barbecue, we were ready for sweets…

So Bill got me a Black Forest cupcake.  It was chocolate with whipped cream topping and cherry filling…  It made me smile!

And this was Bill’s super spicy brownie.

 

After we’d eaten our fill, we decided to drive into Reutlingen and walk around.  The city was pretty crowded today and there was a lot of traffic.

Here we are at a light.  I wanted to get a shot of that awesome church in the background, but kind of failed.

I got these shots of a skate park we passed.  Nice weather for recreation!

We parked the car and walked around Reutlingen.  So many people were out and about, enjoying the sunny weather and doing a little Saturday shopping.  Someone was also getting married at the church pictured below.

 

I thought this fountain was interesting.

I didn’t realize Vinum was also in Reutlingen.  We didn’t go in there today.  Maybe we should have looked for some more wines.

Reutlingen has “pockets” of charm.  

They were cleaning up after the Saturday market.  

A nice little “Tor” at the edge of town.

A “Lux Baer”…

 

We probably should have spent a little more time walking around Reutlingen.  It’s a nice town with a lot of interesting stores and restaurants, even if it’s not quite as exciting as neighboring Tuebingen is.  I’d say Reutlingen is a nice place to stop on your way to areas like Lichtenstein Castle or Bad Urach.  I’m glad we went to Reutlingen, if only to satisfy my curiosity and enjoy some really good street food!

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