Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Springtime in Germany

We spent 2 wonderful weeks in May on a fabulous Bus Tour of Austria, Slovinia, Czech Repulic and Germany. The trip was organized by Gisela Lewis of Special Event Consultant, LLC and Peter Matthai, who is the leader of the Sandler. Peter's band performs any many German events along the East coast, Florida, Canada and Milwaukee's German Fest.

I have put some of my favorite pictures of the trip that include great scenery and having fun with our new friends in the slide show below. However, I will have a separate posting of just pictures of the entertainers we saw during those 2 weeks. After all it was a Reise mit Musik!

The trip started in Austria with stay at the beautiful Hotel Donauschlinge on the shores of the Danube. The view from our room was breathtaking. The food was so delicious at EVERY meal. It was really fun when we decided that for lunch we would go to a Konteterei and just eat Tortes. And we had our first Salzburger Nockerln, it was fantastic. We will definitely be having that again.

We visited such well know places in Austria such as Vienna, Grinzing (sampling the Heurigen) , and Linz. We had a day in Passau and a ride through the Bavarian forest with a stop at the Joskas Crystal world. The trip also went into Slovenia with a visit to the Slavko Avsenik museum & fest hall where we listened to Oberkrainer music, drank Slibowitz and enjoyed watching a tour group of almost all ladies who came from Russia.

But most of all it was a great group of people that we spent those two weeks with. We immediately found that we shared a love of German music and just plain having fun. If you get the New Yorker Staats-Zeitung then you have already read the articles published about this trip. Our friends, Otto & Sieglinde, wrote that detailed account of this trip. I loved reading their articles because it was almost like reliving it all over again and they had details that I had already forgotten. We met this talented couple several years ago on one of Ted Hierl's German Radio Cruises. We are all looking forward to the next one in May 2010.

Gisela & Peter are already getting plans together for next year's trip. So if you see either one of them at German Fest ask them about what destinations are in the works for next year. As soon as I get some details I will be making a post here and letting you know how to sign up.

We went on 3 boat trips, one on the Danube River, the Worthersee, and the Wachau. The trip on the Danube was private and only with our group while 2 musicians accompanied us on the whole trip. We toured the Schoenbrunn castle in Vienna, famous Melk, and saw breathtaking vistas upon the top of the Grossglockner (Austria's highest mountain).

We had music every day. If we were not at a fest enjoying a fine blaskappelle, we were being entertained after dinner at our hotel or enjoying country music Czech style. On the last day of our tour we went to the 125th Stiftungs fest of the Musikkapelle Neubeuern just minutes from our hotel. We were amazed at how many people showed up at this little Bavarian town's celebration. It was a week night and there were about 2,000 people in the large tent. I would estimate that at least 80% of the people were dressed in tracht; including this adorable little guy featured on the right. The slide show has several pictures of when the keg was tapped and of course a hardy "PROST" rang out after that!

It was truly a reise Mit Musik !!!