Tag Archives: Memories of Germany

Random Memories of Germany

21 Feb

Wiesbaden-Part 5

Italy

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I don’t remember the exact route of our trip…I just remember places where we were along the way.  Remember from last week, I mentioned that the other Americans in our B&B in Oberammergau was the pastor from a Baptist church in Kaiserslautern?

First Baptist Church-Kaiserlautern, Germany

Well, believe it or not, we ran into that same group when we were in Pisa, Italy!!  Small world, indeed.

I was fascinated by Pisa and the Leaning Tower.  I was amazed that it was still standing, especially at the angle it is leaning.  And to think that it is STILL standing in 2021!! 

Judy in front of the Leaning Tower – 1970

I realize a lot has been done to shore it up and keep it upright, but still…..  We made another trip to Italy with our girls in 1982, and our Janet climbed up to the top of the tower!  But she always was the more adventurous of all of us.

1982 – Janet in the pink jacket at the top of the Leaning Tower

I was nearly as amazed by the Baptistry near the cathedral, as I was the Leaning Tower. 

1982 – The Baptistry next to the church – Janet in the foreground

It is an amazing building.  And according to this picture we took, the Baptistry seems to be “leaning” a bit, as well!  I guess the ground in that area is not very stable!

We had been told about a shop in Pisa that had marble pieces, and we found it.  We purchased two marble lamp stands that we still have with us today. 

1982 – The Baptistry next to the church – Janet in the foreground

I found some marble “fruit” that I liked and have today as well – along with an alabaster “egg.” 

Marble fruit – quite realistic looking, I think

 And I found some “tumbling angels (or should I say cherubs)” that are made out of some kind of composition material.

The tumbling angels (cherubs) – from right to left

I have enjoyed having all of these things.  And so our trip to Pisa was a grand success!

Again, I don’t exactly remember where we traveled in Italy.  I just remember that we hit Venice,

St. Mark’s Square
The Bridge of Sighs

and Florence (my favorite!!), and Trieste.  

Michelangelo’s David

Fred and his family lived in Trieste following World War 2, and we were able to find the building where his family lived.  They lived in the “mezzanine” of this building – just under the arches of the arcade.  Here is a picture taken by Fred’s dad in 1950,

and now one we took on our trip

As a “footnote” to this story, our Karen and her husband Brian, on one of their trips to Europe, found the same building in Trieste, and Karen was able to point it out to Brian and tell her Dad’s story.  Amazing how that works, hmmm?

I remember we drove along the Appian Way – all those trees along the way.  

We also stopped see Lake Como. Beautiful.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany

14 Feb

Wiesbaden-Part 4

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy WILLS

ITALY

Last time I wrote about our trip in 1970 to the Oberammergau Passion Play.  That trip has remained in our memory with great fondness.

Here are a few more pictures of Oberammergau that we took.  We really loved that town.  This one fascinated me, because the balcony on this house had “cut-outs” of a design.  Never got close enough to really see what they were, but I liked it.  It was a bit of whimsy in my imagination.

And this is the church we saw from our B&B room.  I love those onion-top spires!

And here is the Hansl and Gretl house.  The fresco on the house tells the story.

And here is the Red Riding Hood house.

Since our Karen was only two years old, we left her in Wiesbaden with a couple from our church.  They had a small boy, and the children got along famously.  The husband of the couple was an enlisted military person, and we knew they were struggling a bit with finances.  Therefore, we paid them to care for Karen.  She would need diapers and food, if nothing else.  They initially said they wouldn’t take any money from us, but we told them we would get someone else to watch Karen if we couldn’t pay them for her care.  They finally agreed.  We sighed a big relief, because we knew she would be in good hands with them.

And so, Fred and I were released to travel and see and do things that we would not have been able to do with a small child with us.  Because of that, we had planned our trip to include the Passion Play, and then on into Italy.

One thing that I remember specifically, is that, since we were traveling by car, we had a case of soda in cans in the trunk of the car.  I don’t know whether that trunk had really good insulation or what, but those cans of soda were still COLD by the end of our trip!!  WOW!!

Photo Credit Pixabay

Since this series is about “Random Memories…” I want to tell of a memory of a trip we made to Italy, but not in 1970 (before I forget to mention it again!).  Fred and I made a trip to Italy in 1968 and while on a bus in Rome, the bus had stopped by the American Express office for those of us Americans who needed cash could get what we needed there.  The bus stopped, and our guide stepped out of the bus to handle traffic while we exited the bus ourselves and crossed the street.  Remember now…this was a VERY busy street in Rome, Italy.  All she did was look at the oncoming cars, stepped into the street and point her index finger at them…and they all just…stopped!  I was dumbstruck!  We all made it across the street safely.  WOW!

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany

7 Feb

Wiesbaden-Part 3

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

Shortly before we left Germany to return Stateside, Fred and I (without Karen who was only two years old at that time) went to Oberammergau to see the Passion Play that was being presented that year (1970).  It is only presented once every 10 years.  (Please see my post of November 12, 2012, titled Oberammergau)  We stayed in a B&B in a packaged deal – breakfast and a bed.  The other two meals of the day were in a hotel restaurant.  It wasn’t a terribly large house, and we stayed in the “attic” room – bathroom down the hall, and a balcony outside our room.  But it was comfortable.  

The B&B where we stayed – top with the balcony

We thought it was funny that we stayed in one part of the house – and there was a partition to the house that separated the “house” from the “barn.”  In other words – the cattle were on the other side of that partition!

One of the fun things that happened (we called it a God-thing), was that there were other Americans staying in the house with us.  As we gathered for breakfast that first morning, we discovered that the other Americans were the pastor of the Faith Baptist Church in Kaiserslautern (K-town) and some of his church members!! WOW!  How did THAT happen?

Faith Baptist Church – Kaiserslautern, Germany

We also had assigned seats for the Passion Play, and they were seated beside us.  As I recall, I had made some cookies to take with us on our trip (probably chocolate chip), and the final evening of our stay, we all gathered in the kitchen of the house – along with our host and his family – and shared the cookies and coffee and conversation!  So much fun!

We discovered, in that conversation, that the man of the house had played the part of Jesus in the Passion Play in 1960!  All the actors were from the town of Oberammergau and none were from outside the town.

Purchased slide – 1970 Passion Play

To read the reason for the Passion Play, please Google “Oberammergau Passion Play” and click on the site for the History of the Passion Play.  It is quite interesting.

We realized that much of Oberammergau with its stores and all were geared for all the tourists that came through, whether for the Play or just to visit, but we learned to really love that town.

One of the “famous” stores in Oberammergau, with fresco

I believe they’ve built a new theater for the Play from the one where we saw it.  If we ever get back to Germany, perhaps we can go and take a look at it.  Perhaps the new one is relatively enclosed, as the one where we attended had the stage and the first 10 rows of audience in open air…and it SNOWED during our May 22 performance!!  But not one of the actors – even the children – moved a muscle during the snowfall!  And that was during a tableau scene – so everyone was standing stone-still! 

Purchased slide – 1970 Passion Play

So we hope the new theater is enclosed!

More on that trip next time….

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany

17 Jan

BERLIN – PART 2

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

We always enjoyed our time in Berlin.  As I’ve mentioned in other posts, we never found a distasteful meal in Germany – ANYwhere in Germany!  And we found some of the best food at the Gasthauses where we stopped in small towns.  Our daughters didn’t understand that, until we told them that, in order to stay in business, they had to have good food, that the local people would enjoy and be repeat customers.  If the food was bad, the locals wouldn’t return.  And so we looked for out-of-the-way places to eat as we traveled.

As for Berlin, I don’t remember much about where and what we ate while in Berlin.  Only one instance that has stayed with me.  It was back in 1969, and Fred had a TDY (Temporary Duty) in Berlin, as the replacement for the Meteorologist at the Weather Station in Berlin, while that officer was on vacation.

Templehof Airport – Base Operations where Fred worked in the Weather Station

It was to be a two-week TDY, so Karen and I went with Fred.  Karen was just two years old at the time.  We were staying in the Columbia House hotel at Tempelhof Airport.  

I must add here our method of travel to Berlin from Wiesbaden.  We decided to take the train – which was a troop train. 

Credit Pixabay

We had heard stories of the train trip, but it wasn’t until we were actually on the train that they came to life.  We had a sleeping compartment, which was good.  However, there were about three or four stops along the way – probably going through the Russian Zone and checkpoints.  In any case, our train driver seemed to take great delight in….mmm perhaps trying to slam on the brakes at these stops!  We very nearly rolled right out of those beds each time he jerked us to a stop!  It was NOT a fun trip!  Fortunately, Karen slept right through it!

I don’t remember just what we had done that day, but for some reason, I remember that I was feeling rather ill that evening at supper time (it felt like either a cold coming on, or the flu).  There was a restaurant within the hotel, which was convenient for us, especially having a two-year-old with us at the time.  I believe all the servers, as well as the cooks in the restaurant, were German nationals.  When our server asked what I would like to eat, I informed him that I really wasn’t that hungry, and why.  His face lit up and he told me that he had “just the thing” to get me over it!   He returned with a bowl of the best-tasting lentil soup I’ve ever had! 

Credit Pixabay

It was mostly broth, with the lentils and a few shredded vegetable thrown in.  (As an aside – I’ve tried all these years since to find a recipe for lentil soup that even sounds like that soup tasted!  All with no success)  

After I finished the soup and started to head back to our room, he approached me with a tray that had a cup, some tea bags, with lemon and sweetener, and enough boiling water to make two cups.

Credit Pixabay

He told me to take it to our room and be sure I drank both cups before I went to bed that night.  Which I did.  By the next morning – I was back to normal!!  The soup and tea did the trick!  The following night, at supper, I thanked him profusely!  He went above and beyond his “duty” as server, to help me, and I was so very grateful.  I have always remembered his kindness.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany

3 Jan

The Doctor

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

When we lived in Heidelberg (1980-1983), we lived in an apartment building, furnished by the U.S. government.

Our apartment building – ours was the upper left, on the end

The dormer windows to the right were the maids rooms windows

It was a three-bedroom, one bathroom, living room/dining room combination room, and kitchen.  In our particular housing area (Mark Twain Village, or affectionately known as MTV), the buildings had “maids rooms” above one side of the stairwell – one room for each of the apartments in that stairwell – and the other side of the stairwell was open space.  We lived under the side that had the open space.  The maids room consisted of two twin beds, a desk with chair, and a wardrobe.  There was one bathroom along the hall for use by all the maids rooms.  That’s where we housed visitors that came to us.  Fortunately, I had grown up sleeping on twin beds, and had two twin bedspreads that fit nicely.  Unfortunately, that room became our “junk” room until someone came to visit, then we had to clean it out rather quickly.  But it worked.  Also, down in the basement were the washers and dryers (for the entire stairwell), and “cages” for anything we couldn’t fit in our apartment – bicycles, etc.

I don’t remember a lot of turn-over with occupants in the stairwell, while we were there.  That was a good thing.  The family living below us consisted of a military man and his wife, who was from France.  She was an excellent cook, and showed me many things that the French people cooked.  Unfortunately, none of it lasted with me!

Below this family, and on the first floor, lived a military doctor and his family.  He had grown up living in Brazil with his missionary parents, and spoke fluent Portuguese, as that is the language of that country.  He also spoke English.  His wife was Brazilian.  They attended our church.  I taught their oldest daughter the piano for a while.  She was amazing!!  His name was Dr. Lipsi.

There are two events that involved Dr. Lipsi while we were there:

1.  One day I was in our kitchen, with Janet, and was cutting some soft cheese for some snacks.

Credit Pixabay

Since it was soft cheese, and I was using a new cheese cutter (like the one in the picture), I “pushed” the cheese forward with my thumb.  Janet’s eyes grew wide and she exclaimed…”OH!!”  When I looked at my hand, I realized I had sliced quite a chunk off my thumb!  It was fairly deep, but I hadn’t even felt it!  I wrapped it in a towel, putting pressure on it, and ran down to see Dr. Lipsi.  He very generously took came of it – telling me to “keep pressure on it!”  Like I was about to let go!!

2.  Our Karen had started wearing contact lenses while we were in Heidelberg.

1980 – Judy, Janet and Karen with friends in D.C., before going to Germany

Karen in her glasses

1982 – Berchtesgaden, Bavaria, Germany, inside the Eagle’s Nest

Karen in contact lenses; Judy’s mother, Judy, Janet

One evening, as she was about to go out with friends, she came dashing back into the apartment in tears, saying that the wind had blown one of her contact lenses out of her eye, and she couldn’t find it!  She was in a panic about it, but fortunately, had a spare lense.  So she inserted it, and left with her friends.  When Dr. Lipsi heard the commotion, we told him the situation.  He took his flashlight, went outside, and FOUND THAT LENSE – in the dark evening, ON A BUSH!!  What persistence!!  We were so grateful.  We had just given up and thought it was gone for good.  WOW!

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany

6 Dec

Wiesbaden-Part 3

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

It has been said Germans are known for beer and cuckoo clocks.  The American version of that is that, after being in Germany, Americans return stateside with either a baby or a cuckoo clock!  Well, we had the baby, but she was on-the-way before we even got to Germany!!  In any case, there was a store in downtown Wiesbaden that had the world’s largest cuckoo clock as it’s store front!  Here is a picture of that store front.  I really enjoyed wandering around that store.  But I did NOT want to come home with a cuckoo clock – and I didn’t!

We thoroughly enjoyed Christmas time in Wiesbaden.  Here are some pictures of downtown at night.  These were taken in 1968, so I don’t know if or what Wiesbaden does for decoration in 2020.  We enjoyed the city streets.  But we really enjoyed the “fairy tale” kiosks set up along the main street – Wilhelmstrasse.  These are just a few of the ones we saw.

Hansel & Gretel

There were several main streets in Wiesbaden, Rheinstrasse was one of them.  Ringstrasse was another.  Here are a few pictures of those streets.

Rheinstrasse looking toward Hainerberg

Rheinstrasse looking toward Ringstrasse and the Ringkirche

You can see the Ring Kirche at the end of Rheinstrasse heading up toward Ringstrasse.

We especially enjoyed seeing the churches along the way.  Here is the Marktkirche (Market Church).

The Marktkirche – as it was when we were there

There was a spa/park near downtown called the Kurpark.  Here is the Kurhaus, which was a casino at the time we were there.

Here is the fountain within the park.

It is a beautiful park, with some “Roman” touches to it.  In researching Wiesbaden, I found that Wiesbaden was indeed, occupied by the Romans in around the 370’s A.D.  WOW!

In April of 1968, Fred and I made a trip to Holland – my first visit there!  We left Karen with some church friends, and set out to enjoy ourselves!  We took in Amsterdam and all its sights.  We enjoyed an open-air market there. 

We stopped in Leiden to see the Treslong Experimental Gardens.  So well done.

We took in Haarlem with its magnificent cathedral.

The Bell Tower of the St. Bavo Church Credit Google search and Wikipedia

The pipe organ inside there has the distinction of having been played by G.F. Händel in 1740 and 1750, and in 1766 then ten-year-old Mozart!  WOW!!  Later, when we made the trip with my Mother, someone was actually playing the organ – and I was quite enthralled!  Beautiful! 

The organ pipes in the church of St. Bavo

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany

29 Nov

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

Wiesbaden Part 2

There were so many things about Wiesbaden that we enjoyed.  We actually loved living “on the economy” and among the German people.  They are a generous and loving people.  They were kind to us. 

The German people were generally kind about our feeble attempts to speak their language, and were appreciative that we made the effort to speak German.  We heard of many funny mistakes.  For instance, the gentleman who was a Baptist missionary – and friend of ours – told of the time he went into a store, wanting to purchase some grape juice (traubensaft).  When he told the store clerk what he wanted, the clerk looked at him, and tried VERY hard not to laugh, but it finally got away from him.  Wiping his eyes, he told the missionary that he didn’t have any of that – as he had asked for pigeon juice (taubensaft)!!  The words are only one letter different.

The church where we met were “partners” with a German Baptist Church – we shared the space.  And later – just as we were leaving Germany to head stateside, the churches jointly built a new building for both congregations to meet.  The English-speaking Baptist church there held its 25th anniversary during the time we returned to Germany (1980-1983), and we were able to attend that meeting – in that “new” church building.  It was an amazing time.

The “new” church building

Herman Stout speaking – the first American pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church.

All former pastors were in attendance except for the pastor while we were there.

We enjoyed taking short day or half-day trips around the area.  One of our favorite places to drive to was Konigstein, and the area from there was the Feldberg (field mountain).  Here is a picture of the Feldberg at Easter time, 1969.

On the Feldberg

We enjoyed shopping in the German stores, and just walking in downtown Wiesbaden.  One of our favorite department stores was Hertie.  As I remember, when our church congregation decided to purchase flatware for the church kitchen, we purchased it from there.

Downtown Wiesbaden – Hertie department store – Christmas 1968

In another post, I mentioned that the American housing where we lived for the final two years we were in Wiesbaden, always had a contest to see who could decorate the best.  Here is our apartment’s contribution in Christmas 1968, and Christmas 1969.

Our apartment is top left – 1968

1969

And here is a picture of the apartment building across from ours – the entire one side of the building went together to put together this Christmas “tree” in lights.  Fun.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany- Cable Cars

25 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

Recently, Fred and I visited Disney Hollywood Studios (we like to just call it the “Studios”).  While Disney is open a bit now, there are still a lot of shows and rides that aren’t open.  Therefore, we don’t spend a lot of time at the Studios.

Credit Google Search and Walt Disney World Resort

However, there is a new “mode of transportation” at the Studios, that goes from there to EPCOT, with stops at some of the resorts along the way.  They fashion it a “gondola-lift” type of transportation, and call it the Disney Skyliner.  We rode it for the first time – and thoroughly enjoyed the ride!

Many years ago, some were asking why the Monorail only ran from The Magic Kingdom to EPCOT – why not to the other Disney parks.  The answer seemed to be that the cost was just too prohibitive.  

Be that as it may, after riding in the Skyliner, we were curious about the cost – whether it was that much less than the Monorail would have been.  That really isn’t too much of our concern – except as how it affects the price of our Annual Pass!  But as Fred says, the cable car only requires a “cable” to run the gondola along, where the Monorail requires an entire track!  So perhaps the Skyliner is, indeed, much less expensive.

All that to say that Fred and I began reminiscing about cable car transportation we have experienced in our lifetime.

The first that we remembered was when we were stationed in Wiesbaden, West Germany (1967-1970).  We were “vacationing” in Garmisch, in Bavaria, and decided to take the cable car up the Zugspitze. 

The Zugspitze – Credit Google Search and en.wikipedia.org

That mountain is the highest one in Germany.  It was a fun ride in that cable car – but the funniest thing was that we saw quite a few young people with their skies in tow – and the skiers were wearing shorts and t-shirts!  Granted it was the middle of summer, but come-on – this was nearly 10,000′ above sea level!  And it’s COLD at that altitude!!  We were highly amused!

This symbol is at the highest point on the mountain

We then remembered the time we rode the Tram from the foothills of Albuquerque up to the top of Sandia Crest (altitude 10,679′ above sea level).  The Tramway had not been built until after Fred and I married and moved away from Albuquerque (1961).  

We remember riding cable cars in Lucerne, Switzerland up the mountainside to Mount Pilatus.

Mount Pilatus, taken from Lucerne

On top of Mt. Pilatus, looking down at the cable car

Fred remembers that in 1948 when he was sent to a four-week summer camp in Switzerland, and that on one of their outings they rode in a cable (car).  Instead of an actual car, there were long poles attached to the cable.  About 10 feet below the cable, was a bicycle-type handle-bar, and just below the handle-bar was a bicycle-type seat.  During the snow season, skiers would ride, sitting on the bicycle seat with the skies dangling below in the open air.  During the ski season, there would be at least 10-12 feet of snow below the seats, making it a ski lift.  In June there was no snow, so all of us campers road with our feet dangling.  At times we were at least 40 feet above the ground above most of the trees.   Quite an thrilling experience, especially with no seat belts.

Fred – 1948

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany-The Windows

18 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

While we were in Heidelberg (1980-1983), the military decided that the windows in all U.S. government housing apartments needed to be replaced with newer, better ones.

1980 – our apartment building.  Ours is the top left, on the end.

Now, that usually isn’t a big deal, and the new ones were a great improvement over the old ones.  And those buildings (with kitchen/bathroom fixtures) were built in the 1940’s, so an upgrade should have been welcomed.

The windows in the housing in Patrick Henry Village (PHV) were a pop-out/pop-in situation.  The buildings in PHV were built much later than the ones we lived in – in Mark Twain Village (MTV).  So PHV windows were done first, then they turned to us.

Unfortunately, the window spaces built in those MTV buildings were not any kind of “standard” sizes.  The frames were just not the same size as the windows they wanted to replace.  Therefore, they had to remove all the windows in our buildings and drill out the window spaces in order for the new windows to fit!!

That might not have been much of a problem, except they wanted to do all that drilling work while we were still living in the space!!  Here are a couple of pictures of what we had to do – everything had to be moved away from the windows and stacked against the walls.  So we covered everything with sheets and plastic sheeting, to keep the dust off the furniture.  And that included every window in the apartment!

The alcove in the living room

Window at the end of the building-during the renovation.

Here are pictures of the windows in Karen’s room – one at the end of the building, and one on the side.

Here is a picture of Janet’s room – and you can see that there was a large double window there! 

Here is a picture of Janet’s room – and you can see that there was a large double window there! 

That was also the same as the windows in our master bedroom. (Sorry, no picture there)

There was one window in the bathroom,

and another triple in the kitchen. 

There were three or four windows in each of the alcoves in the living room and dining room, and another large set at the end of the building.

The window at the end of the building, before the renovation.

So that’s a lot of windows.  It took them two weeks to drill out the window space and replace the old windows with the new ones.  We lived in a hotel during that entire time.  There was just no way we could live – in October! – in that apartment with no windows.

And then, when they were done, we found that the window replacements were taller than the original ones – and, therefore, all the window “treatment” that we had, was MUCH shorter than it had been before!  Not too happy about that.  But I didn’t want to purchase anything else for the window treatments, as we would be leaving Germany in June of the next year – just eight months later.  So we just “made do” with what we had.

Yeah, it was an inconvenience, but life is like that.  It was still an experience, and one we won’t forget any time soon! 

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of German-Pianos and Such

2 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I believe I’ve mentioned in previous musings, that I had piano training from the day I started first grade until I graduated from high school.  Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean I was a prodigy.  I believe God gave me a talent for music – and the piano in particular – but I was not given the “gift” of music.  I can play, but I always must have a piece of music in front of me – I am unable to play “by ear” as so many can and do.  I am grateful for what I have, and rejoice with those who have the gift of music, and I enjoy their talents.

But that’s not what this post is about.  There has almost always been a piano in my life.  I grew up with a piano in my house.  I remember always having an old upright piano at home.

1950 – Judy at the old upright piano

Then in 1952, when I was just 11 years old, my parents purchased a new piano.  That’s the one I still have.

1952 – the new piano

1952 – Judy at the new piano

When I went away for college, there wasn’t one.  And when Fred and I married, there was no room in our little apartment for a piano, even if we could have afforded to buy one.

But following the death of my father, my mother re-married after some years, and they moved into an apartment, with no room for the piano.  So I inherited that piano – and it still sits in my living room now.  But it wasn’t until the early 1970’s that I acquired it.

2020 – at home in Orlando, Florida

When Fred and I went to Germany (Wiesbaden) in 1967, we joined a small English-speaking church there.  Soon I was asked to be the church pianist.  And so, after we moved from the economy housing to government quarters, we rented a piano from a company in town.  We were amazed to find that those who brought the piano up three flights of stairs….were two older gentlemen!  They had some sort of straps around their backs, and the end of the straps – in front of them – had a large “hook” at the bottom that fitted under each end of the piano.  We couldn’t believe our eyes when those two men – one on each end of the piano – bent, then lifted – and the piano came up!  They carried that piano those three flights of stairs like it was a walk in the park!!  And two years later, when we left Wiesbaden, they carried it down those same three flights of stairs, like they were carrying something as light as a feather!  No grunts or groans from them!  Amazing!

Ten years later, when we moved to Heidelberg, Germany,

it was during a time when the government was allowing more than 2,000 pounds of household goods to be shipped, so we, essentially, brought our entire household with us.  Well, most of it, anyway.  We knew there would be washers and driers available to us, so we left ours in storage.  However, my piano came with us!  I honestly don’t remember the trip up – once again it was three flights of stairs.

Christmas 1982 – Karen in front of the piano in our quarters

But the trip down, three years later, was something else.  No strong older gentlemen this time, but it took five hefty men with many straps around and under the piano to get it down the stairs.  If you will look at the picture below, you will see large windows at each landing.

Well, on the way down, a couple of the men simply just gave up their jobs and let the piano go to the other three.  It happened on the stairway, not the landing, and I had visions of my piano flying down the rest of the stairs and straight out that landing window – and onto the sidewalk below – smashing into a million pieces! Fortunately, the other three men were strong enough to hold the piano in place until the other two could gather their strength again, and carry the thing the rest of the way down.  Whew!

And one last tidbit about that piano.  It was made by Everett, and instead of a wooden pegboard, it had a metal pegboard.  That made the instrument VERY heavy!  As it was being off-loaded at our new house in Virginia – again with FIVE men carrying it – they

got if off the truck and had to stop and catch their breath!  Then they got it to the bottom of the stairs going into our house.  Again they had to stop.  One of the gentlemen asked: “who plays this thing?”  I replied that both my girls and I did.  He then said, “that’s a good thing, because if this was just a piece of furniture, we would leave it right here!”  Fortunately, they didn’t, and it made it into our living room.

1992 – Seaford, Virginia – Judy and Mom in front of the piano

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

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