Friday, March 26, 2010

Zugspitze, the "roof" of Germany

Okay, I promised photos from the top of Zugspitze, so here they are:

This first one is just a shade to the right (east) from the next one. Basically just the gold cross is not in the photo. I think you are looking across Germany into Austria, but I'm not positive on that one.

There's actually a ladder so folks can go stand by this cross. Mercifully closed in the winter. One slip and you'd slide fall a very long way.

I hope all is well out there with everyone. Things here are exciting - we move next week. We'll start to take some stuff over tomorrow. Just some light stuff - I'll let the movers do the heavy lifting.



Monday, March 22, 2010

Andechs Kloster, Garmisch, and the Bavarian Alps

Sorry it's been awhile everybody. Things have been a bit hectic around here. We had a Chaplain's Retreat this past weekend, combined with an upcoming move to Thallichtenberg, AND work stuff (hiring, getting new staff acquainted with Army stuff, etc.). So pretty busy.

This weekend, as I said, was a much deserved bit of rest with a Chaplain's Retreat. They put us up in Edelweiss - an American style lodge in the Bavarian Alps (Garmisch-Partenkirchen if you must know). Since we'd already been to the Alps once before, and passed through a place called Andechs Kloster on that time through, we decided to head back through there for lunch. We were not disappointed! It is an old monastery where they still raise their own livestock (hogs) and brew their own beer (delicious!!!!) - since 1455. We got there about 1 in the afternoon, and the place was packed! We thought we were going to have to fight some Germans for a place to sit down. Really not too far of an exaggeration, except Germans are generally too nice for that sort of nonsense. We all got our seats right next to each other.

This shot is of Ian and Catherine. It's hard to appreciate the crowd, but I'm guessing they can easily fit 300 people on this outdoor terrace. No real idea on how many can fit inside. The quality of food and beer certainly justifies the amount of seating, but it really is almost inadequate.

And of course Leah wanted her chance to sit with Catherine. You can't see here, but folks still wear the traditional lederhosen and dirndls in this part of Germany. Pretty much like the Scots still wearing their kilts.

From Andechs, we drove south into the Bavarian Alps to the Edelweiss Lodge. It's an actual garrison, and I'm wondering how one gets stationed there. Since we got there before everyone else, we decided to walk around and explore a little bit. Her you can see the Alps in the immediate background. The statue is of General Marshall (if I remember correctly). Leah had a good time "directing" the poses.

Last shot for now is of Ian and Leah from the top of Germany . . . Zugspitze! Just shy of 3000 meters, practically straight up. There isn't much but air between the kids and the other side of that fence/rail. Long drop too!

I'll try to post some other shots from the top of Zugsptize coming up. It was a pretty cool train ride up to a glacier, then a short cable-car (gondola) up to the top. It was fun to look out one side to Germany, then turn around and look down the other side into Austria.

I hope everyone out there is doing well. Cheers!


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The view from here

Catherine was enjoying the sunset tonight, while I was oblivious. Thankfully she told me to go look out the window. Which I promptly did, and I ran to grab my camera to snap some photos.

I took this one here, as well as some of some birds in a tree - very Alfred Hitchcock-ish in a "The Birds" sort of way.

Have a wonderful day everybody!


Sunday, March 7, 2010

Quick photos of Ian and Leah

Not much news from Germany. We did get out in the snow, we couldn't let it keep us indoors again. I think we're all a little cabin-feverish since the majority of our snows have been in time for the weekends!

Before we took off, I grabbed some photos of Leah . . .

and Ian . . .

I hope all is well out there with everyone. Cheers!


Friday, March 5, 2010

Nothing better to do

Well, we were going to get out today and do some shopping but Mother Nature had other plans. Snow : (

It started last night and is only now showing signs of letting up. Very disappointing since we've had so much sunshine and warmer weather lately. Strangest part was I woke up to the sound of thunder. Saw some lightning and more thunder, so I got up to have a look and it was snowing hard!

The plows have been through, and like I said it is starting to slow down so maybe we'll get out. In the meantime, I've been playing around with the camera and flash again lately. I was working on this concept with Ian where with one flash I'm trying to light both him and get a shiny reflection in the background as a halo. I like what I've got with Ian, but not the highlight. We'll do some more with this one this weekend.

I tried to get Leah to help too, but directing her on where to sit and where to look is a challenge. So I'll just settle for nice photos of her : )

Finally, the kids brought Catherine in and we all had fun with this one.

The Skinner clan in Germany is doing well - though I for one can't wait for the warmer weather! Best wishes for everyone out there. Cheers!