Tag Archives: Memories of Germany

Random Memories of Germany-Crystal

12 Dec

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I am re-blogging this post, as it brings back so many wonderful memories of our time in Germany…

I want to share some precious items we found in Germany.  We had not heard of Swarovski crystal until we returned to Germany for our second tour of duty there (1980-1983).  We were enthralled with the beauty of it!  And while each piece was relatively inexpensive at our U.S. base exchange, we found them to be almost half price at the Canadian exchange in Baden Solingen.  We happened to be there once with Fred’s parents, and our daughters, and I had to borrow some Deutchmarks from my Father-in-law in order to purchase the ones I wanted.  And I did pay him back!

I actually purchased some for myself, as well as duplicates for our girls, so they each have a set of their own.  I suppose they can distribute ours to our grandchildren, when the time comes.

I found some lotus blossom candle holders that I really like, but I can’t use U.S. candles in them.  They are made for European candles, which are thinner-based.  So they sit on a shelf and look pretty.  That’s okay with me.

When we were in Germany, we traveled quite a bit.  One of the places we went, was Innsbruck, Austria.  The Swarovski factory is there, and we thought to pick up some “seconds.”  However, when we asked about “seconds,” the saleslady informed us that they had NO “seconds.”  If there is a flaw in the product, they just re-fire it and make something new.  Well, shucks!  That really put a damper on our outing!

Fred’s parents came to visit us in Germany each year we were there.  During our first tour, Fred’s Dad was involved with the gathering of Baptists in Bertchgaden, in Bavaria, and we joined them there, including my Mother, who was visiting at the time.  We all stayed in the General Walker Hotel at the top of a small mountain at the end of a steep drive.  The large facility was delightful (formerly used by the Nazi’s – named the Platterhof).  There were restaurants and shops within the main building. 

1969-At the General Walker-Left-to right
Judy, Kitty Wills, Karen, Agnes Lites, Charles Wills

Fred’s mother found this beautiful crystal three-sided obelisk.  Each side has a different Christian symbol carved on it.  Here they are:

Of course, I was taken with the obelisk as well, and purchased one for myself.  When Fred’s mother died, I inherited her obelisk, which I have given to one of our daughters.  When I die, the other daughter will get mine.  I think it’s beautiful.

God has been so gracious to us allowing us to live in that wonderful country for a total of six years.  It was a terrific experience, and one I never dreamed I would have.  God is good.

For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected

if it is received with thanksgiving,

1 Timothy 4:4 

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.

West Berlin

5 Dec

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I am re-blogging this post, as it brings back so many wonderful memories of Germany…

We had some amazing experiences during our times in West Germany.  We saw so many wonderful sights while there.  So much history, as well.

One of our favorite cities to visit was West Berlin.  At the time we were there, The Wall (Der Maur) was still in place.  And, unfortunately, the Brandenberg Gate was in the Russian Zone, or East Berlin.  We were unable to get close to it. [1967-1970]

I later spoke to a German national who said she just couldn’t imagine living in such an “enclosed” place as West Berlin.  I tried to assure her that it didn’t FEEL enclosed.  The American Zone was quite open and free.  I don’t think I was very convincing.  She just had to experience it for herself.

As we walked around the city, we came upon a fascinating piece of old Germany – a very old hand-watering pump.  Apparently, anyone who knew about it, could bring their car/wagon/etc. there and get free water to wash whatever they had – as long as they were willing to hand-pump the water.  Not something you see around the U.S.

My Mother had come to Germany to visit us that year (May 1969) and we delighted in taking her places that I know she only dreamed of ever seeing.  We happened to be in West Berlin during the celebration of the 20thanniversary of the Berlin Airlift.    The German people had erected a monument to that occasion, and the celebration took place in front of the hotel where we stayed.  The monument is three-pronged, representing the American, British, and French efforts to keep the free German people from starving and out of Russian/Communist hands.  It was a tremendous success.  

Another site that impacted me greatly was in the heart of downtown West Berlin, along the Kurfurstendam, affectionately known by the locals as the Kudam, which is the main shopping street in downtown West Berlin.  After the colossal disaster of World War 2, the German people decided to leave a reminder to themselves of the cost of pride and war.  They left standing the bombed-out shell tower of the Kaiser Wilhelm church.  And built right next to it a beautiful and modern new church and church tower.  While the new structure is impressive, it cannot be fully appreciated until one is inside.  The all-glass bricks are a cobalt blue, and with the sun shining through those bricks – well, all I can say is, it’s breath-taking.  And peaceful. And amazing.  And I’ve run out of adjectives already.  

~~~~~~~~~~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-Wood Inlay

21 Nov

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I am re-blogging this piece, as it is a wonderful memory we have of Germany.

…I’ve never thought I would be particularly interested in wood, types of wood, or just about anything related to wood.  I guess the first time I really became interested was when I was graduating from high school and a local furniture store gave a Hope Chest to every graduating girl in my class.  Now, I must say that the chests were VERY MINIATURE!!  More like a keepsake box.  But they were made of cedar, as a real hope chest would be, and finished beautifully.  After all these 50+ years since that time, my miniature hope chest still smells wonderfully fragrant.  That’s probably why I love the fresh smell of cedar so much.

Inside with all my treasures – including the gavel I used as Worthy Advisor in Rainbow Girls

Lane Cedar Chests from American Furniture Company gave the boxes

When we were stationed in Germany in the late 1960’s, we came across some wood inlay pictures that really caught our eye.  The intricate “jigsaw puzzle” work of the artist…and the different color of the woods used…were fascinating.  We purchased just one picture, thinking that was all we could afford.  And while we cherished that picture, we couldn’t help but wish we had purchased more.

Marienplatz – Garmisch/Partinkirken

Back to Germany we went in the early 1980’s – and we began our search for more of those wood inlay pictures, and especially by the same artist.  And we found them!  We snapped up two more.  All of the scenes are of places in Germany that were important to us and our memories.  We treasure them.  And we learned that this particular artist had cut enough puzzle pieces for his apprentices to make pictures for up to five years after his death!  Amazing. 

Neuschwanstein Castle
Konigsee

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 Wood Carver

14 Nov

MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I am re-blogging this piece, as it is a wonderful memory we have of Germany.

….Someone told us about a Master Woodcarver in Oberammergau, and insisted that we visit his house/workshop.  Fred was chosen to attend a NATO school in Oberammergau.  So we hired a single friend to stay with the girls in Heidelberg, and I went with Fred to the school.  Again, we stayed in a B&B, and I was able to explore the town while he was in classes at the school.

As I explored, I found the house of the Master Woodcarver.  His wife seemed pleased to have me invite myself to their house, and took me to his workshop, where he was working on one of his creations.  To say I was entralled would be an understatement, for sure!  He could carry on a complete conversation and continue to carve at the same time – without missing a beat or a stroke!

They showed me samples of his work – different sizes and different themes.  They told me that the tourist shops in town had offered him exhorbatant commissions, if he would just allow them to sell his craft/product in their stores.  He rejected them all.  The only time he allowed his product to be in their stores was when he was carving a very large (sometimes life-sized) piece, and needed their large machine to work a particular piece.  Their bargaining chip was – “you can use our equipment, but we get to sell (blank) number of your works in the store.”

I was in love.  I purchased two pieces of his art, and have enjoyed them all these years since.  In later years, when my Mother came for a visit, we took her to Oberammergau, and to the carver’s house.  She purchased another one – a “happy” monk with a beer stein in his hand.  They told us that, the larger the size of the monk, the “happier” he appeared!  I was given that piece when she passed away.

We had dinner in the NATO Club several evenings while on that trip.  While looking around the shop within the Club, I found a wood carving of an eagle – one of my favorite creatures.  And guess who the artisan was!!  That’s right – my favorite Master Woodcarver!  It is now hanging on my wall above the door.

When my best friend came to visit from Panama City, Florida, we took her to Oberammergau, and – of course! – to the woodcarvers house.  The lady of the house told us that he had been commissioned to do two life-sized pieces for a Catholic Church in Panama City!  The next time I visited her, we went to that church to see the statues.  They were magnificent!

So many items we were able to purchase while in Europe, to remind us of our times there, and the places we visited.  But these wood carvings are some of our most favorite pieces and memories.

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-Part 8

24 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Willsili

Fred and I both enjoyed our two tours-of-duty to Germany immensely.  While we might not have partaken of a lot of German-American activities, we did some.  We were highly involved with our church activities, and our daughters activities, as well.  But that didn’t mean we didn’t enjoy the culture, food, etc. of Germany.

And we were extremely grateful to be living in a land so far from our home country.  One of the best benefits, was to look at the U.S. from the outside.  That was an amazing perspective!

I took German lessons before and after we arrived in Germany, to better be able to communicate with the German people.  I was some-what successful in that effort.  We had been told that the German people were most appreciative of any effort Americans made to speak the language – not just expect the Germans to learn and understand our English.

When we lived in Wiesbaden,

Photo by Judy

I found an Austrian lady who was married to a German man and was willing to tutor me in German.  I thoroughly enjoyed my lessons, and tried very hard to learn the language.  Our Karen was under three-years-old at that time, and since my tutor had a young son, I took her with me to my lessons and the children played while we mothers worked on German lessons.  My final lesson was more of a “tea party” than a lesson.  She served me some Austrian pastry, and coffee with whipped cream in it!  Yummmmmm!

When we arrived in Heidelberg, 

Photo by Philip Jahn on Unsplash

I took lessons with a group, from those offered on the military base we lived near.  Not nearly so much fun as my Austrian tutor, but efficient, just the same.  Our final test was to pair up with another person, go to the hauptstrasse (main street) of downtown Heidelberg with a set of questions.  We were to stop someone on the street, ask our question in German, and record their answer, in German.  We were rather nervous about this procedure, but we did it.  Those we stopped looked rather stern when we stopped them, but then gave us our answer in the most polite and friendly way possible.  It was an amazing experience!

And so, when Fred would come home from his work (both in Wiesbaden as well as Heidelberg), and tell me of the complaints that came from his co-workers, it rather set me off!  They would complain that “there’s nothing to do here, except go to the club and drink!”  I was rather furious at that comment!  I told Fred – “they are here at government expense!  There is all of Europe to explore!  What is the MATTER with them??”

I have no idea whether or not Fred was able to pass that sentiment along to those guys. And I have to admit that most of them were single airmen (enlisted personnel), who were mostly away from home for the very first time.  And as a matter of fact, we tried all we could to help them.  Occasionally I would fix a traditional American meal (perhaps Thanksgiving turkey with all the trimmings), and have a large meal with some of the guys to share the meal with us.

Credit Church Art

We did all we could to help them get past the loneliness and enjoy the beauty of Europe.

We were told of one young man who determined to enjoy his experience in Germany.  He refused the base housing, and lived in a German apartment.  He got to know his landlords and shared experiences with them.  He participated in the local activities.  He learned to read and speak German.  He joined a local “little theater” (as we would call it here) and participated in some of their productions.  In other words, he immersed himself in the local culture.  He was sad to leave Germany, and those he had come to know, were sad to see him go.

As you might had gleaned from some of my posts about “Random Memories of Germany” – we did everything we could to immerse ourselves – and our daughters – in Germany and Europe.  It was a wonderful experience, and our memories are precious to us.

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-Let’s Eat!

3 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I had never really eaten any type of “international” food as I was growing up, just what was around Albuquerque.  You know – pizza, Mexican food, Chinese.  But I don’t remember there being a German restaurant in Albuquerque – at least one I knew about.

So I didn’t really have any kind of frame of reference for what to expect in the way of food when we got to Germany in 1967.  I am most happy to report that my experience with German food was off the charts!  It was wonderful – or as I used to compliment the server – “Ausgezeichnet” (outstanding!!).  That always got a chuckle from the server – whether it was my pronunciation or what the word means, I’m not sure.  But I like to think it left a good impression.

And let me make this statement right now:   we NEVER had a bad meal in any German restaurant – no matter where it was.  It could have been in the town where we were living at the time – or it could have been along the roadside where we would stop as we were traveling.  It was ALL good!

Our first experience was in the hotel where we were to stay for about a week when we first arrived in Wiesbaden – the American Arms Hotel.  We ate many of our meals there and were pleased.  Our military sponsors took us out to eat that first evening, and it was at the zum Keller in Wiesbaden.  I had my first taste of schnitzel there, as well as the wonderful salad they make (you know – cucumbers and onions in a vinegar sauce on butter lettuce…yummm!), and the French fries (pomme frites).  Wow…my mouth is watering just remembering!

Credit Google search

Credit Pixabay

In later years, when we returned for Fred’s second tour of duty in Germany, we found a wonderful restaurant, called Grimmingers, that was just down the street from our apartment.  They had the most wonderful schnitzel there – and we each had our favorite.  Fred always wanted the Jägerschnitzel (hunter’s schnitzel). 

Credit Google search and Quick German Recipes

Our daughters both loved the Rahmschnitzel (topped with a cream sauce). 

Credit Google search and German Culture

Unfortunately, I can’t remember the exact name of my favorite schnitzel, and it’s possible that it was a house speciality.  It was the usual schnitzel with a couple of stalks of Spargle (white asparagus) on top, and covered with a cream sauce.  Delicious!  Also unfortunately, our daughter, Karen, told us following a visit to Heidelberg in recent years, that the restaurant is no longer there – it is now a bank!  Shucks!

In a previous musing, I mentioned that we had a favorite Gasthause, the Schwartzeradler (Black Eagle) where we always stopped on our way to Rothenburg.

Credit Google Search and swartzer_adler_rothenberg.com

It was in a very small village, right on the road we drove on.  I believe we always got their schnitzel there, rather than trying to eat somewhere within the walled city of Rothenburg.  Our girls didn’t understand that, until we told them that the “local” restaurant had to have good food, or it wouldn’t survive, while the restaurants within cities that attracted tourists didn’t – the tourists probably wouldn’t return, so it didn’t really matter how good the food was.  It was an eatery that was well attended by the local population.  If the locals didn’t like the food, they wouldn’t return – and this one was well-established.

I have nothing but good memories of food in Germany.  It’s one of the things I miss the most about living there.  We are grateful God allowed us that time in our lives – and the memories that accompany it.

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-Trips to Italy Part 1

1 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I must start this particular series of stories with a disclaimer:  we absolutely LOVED living in Germany – both times!  Perhaps it’s because we both have Germany in our ancestry, or perhaps we just like living in Europe.  But Germany holds a special place in our hearts.  I know Germany’s history in the World Wars is awful, but I believe that was the fault of the political people in power – not the German people as a whole.  We found them to be gracious and lovely.

And so, on to this series.  In this particular series, I would like to describe the trips we made to Italy.  Living in Germany allowed us to travel to many other spots in Europe without too much difficulty.  I had never been to Italy, but Fred lived with his family in several places in Italy following World War 2.  Please see Fred’s previous posts: (all are titled Fred Remembers…) September 9, 2018, September 16, 2018, September 23, 2018, and October 21, 2018, for Fred’s remembrances of living in Italy.

We were stationed in Wiesbaden, West Germany from June 1967 through June 1970.  Our first trip to Italy was in October 1968.  We had some good friends in our church in Wiesbaden, and were able to leave Karen with them, while we traveled.  We didn’t think we would be able to enjoy our traveling with a new baby – or a new baby would enjoy being carted around every here and there.  So Fred and I set off on our journey.

As I look back on the pictures we took in 1968 and 1970 and then at the ones we took with our girls during Thanksgiving 1982, the differences we saw were amazing!  I don’t remember exactly the order we visited in our 1968 trip, but I know we spent at least one full day at Pompeii.  Fascinating!

But Fred had read up on the Vesuvius eruption, and so wanted to see Ercolano (Herculaneum).  I believe it was actually closer to the eruption itself, and was covered with more lava than ash, as Pompeii was.  The remaining colors on the walls are more brilliant and more well preserved than even that of Pompeii.  Amazing!  We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Ercolano.

Ercolano – Judy standing in a courtyard

We spent a bit of time in Amalfi – a beautiful coastal town in Italy.

Amalfi

Cathedral in Amalfi

We saw the “smallest fishing village in Italy” along our bus tour.  (Don’t ask me where – I have totally forgotten that!)

The smallest fishing village in Ital

We spent several days in Naples, staying at a B&B there.  We were fascinated with the Solfotaro, still bubbling with hot mud, with its connection still to Vesuvius – all those miles away. Fred reminded me that it is similar to Yellowstone National Park, and its volcanic activity (Old Faithful).  As with Yellowstone, there is a fence to keep the spectators away from the bubbling lava.

The Bay of Naples is gorgeous.  

Solfotaro in Naples – it smells of sulfur

The bay of Naples at evening time

All pictures are by Fred Wills

~~~~~~~~~~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-A Visit to Greece

18 Jul

SUNDAY MEMORIES

We so loved living in Germany – the housing, the stores, the antiquities, being close to so many other countries of Europe – the food…just about anything and everything we could think of….is a great memory for us.

One of those memories is the time we were able to visit Greece.  WOW!  What an experience that was!  I never, in any imagination, did I think I would ever be able to visit that beautiful country!

It was in March of 1969 that Fred and I made the trip.  We left two-year-old Karen with some good church friends, and we left for a two-week trip to Greece.  I guess the main place we wanted to visit was Athens, and we did just that.  I’m not too sure just how much wandering around the town on our own we did.

We did do some of that wandering, because we came upon the Panatheniac Stadium for the “new” Olympics (the first modern Olympic Games, 1896, the only stadium built completely out of marble), and the plaque with the Olympic symbols.

We found a Greek War Memorial.  According to Google Search and Alamy photos, it is: dh Old town South NICOSIA CYPRUS Eleftheria Freedom monument liberty Lefkosia Podocataro

We found the St. Luke’s Byzantine Monastery.

We found the ruins of the Temple of Jupiter.

We found Hadrian’s Arch – and here is a picture of the Acropolis through the arch.

I know we did ramble through a lot of the ruins and the acropolis in Athens.  I believe we stayed most of one entire day on the acropolis, just being amazed that we were standing on those wonderful ruins that had been in existence for thousands of years.  I remember Fred sitting on a broken pillar, and stating “I never thought I would get here!”  Here is a picture of me inside the Parthenon and other pictures.  

I was fascinated by the ruins of Dionysus Amphitheater along one side of the Acropolis.

And here’s a picture of Fred sitting on one of the priest’s seats in that amphitheater.  Those marble seats must have been really hard for long-term sitting through the Greek plays performed there!

For some reason, I was especially taken with the Erectheoin.  Something about all those Greek women carved into the pillars just fascinated me. 

There is a legend about the olive tree planted alongside the Erectheoin.  From Google search and Culture Trip:

Legend has it that when it came to determining which god would be the patron deity of Athens, both Athena and Poseidon responded as wanting the position. The contest took place in the Acropolis, where both gods were asked to present their gifts to the city. Poseidon went first and raised his trident, smashing it on a rock of the Acropolis, thus, producing salt water. Athena went second and offered an olive tree, a gift the citizens of Athens deemed useful and beautiful; therefore, she became the patron of the city, which was named after her.

Credit Google search and Erick Drost/Flickr

And here’s a picture of that olive tree in 1969 – with Judy in the red dress.

I think I enjoyed the countryside of Greece as much as anything.  With the olive trees and the landscape – the countryside reminded me a lot of New Mexico.  Thoughts of “home” came to mind seeing that.

We did made one side-trip up to Delphi.  It was a bus trip that allowed us to see a lot of the Greek countryside along the way.  I especially wanted to get to Delphi, as I had read in one of my favorite books, that there is a stadium at the top of the amphitheater.  So Fred and I began the climb from Apollo’s Temple, up to the top of the amphitheater.  

Apollo’s Temple and amphitheater from top of the amphitheater

When we stopped to catch our breath, we saw the bus tour group heading down from the Temple back to the bus.  So we made a hurried trip down – never quite reaching the very top to see the stadium.  Shucks! 

But we were able to walk along the Sacred Way, and saw one remnant of an Oracle.  It was still a wonderful trip, and we are so glad we were able to make it.

Along the Sacred Way
The Oracle-along the Sacred Way

NOTE:  All pictures were by Fred and Judy Wills, except the one noted.

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-Heidelberg

27 Jun

SUNDAY MEMORIES
Judy Wills

I was looking at the photograph over our bed recently, and it reminded me of when and where we purchased it.

When we arrived in Heidelberg (1980-1983 tour of duty), we stayed in temporary quarters until we could move into our “permanent” quarters. It was, essentially, a hotel, but maintained by the government. We were able to find and purchase a car relatively quickly, but Fred used it to go to and from work. That left me and the girls with riding the bus wherever we wanted to go.

That wasn’t too bad, fortunately. One day, I remember being by myself at the BX/Commissary complex, and found the “Thrift Shop.” It was a good place to look around and see if those leaving the area had put anything up for sale, that they didn’t need since they were returning to the States.

One thing I found that we really needed was a transformer.

Credit Google Search and Amazon.com

Germany uses 220v electricity, while the U.S. uses 110v. So we needed a piece of equipment called a transformer that allowed us to use our 110v powered equipment on the 220v system without ruining our stuff. This was a good piece of equipment and the price was right, so I purchased it. Unfortunately, it was extremely HEAVY!! It weighed about 30 pounds! Definitely too heavy for me to carry on the bus! I asked if I could leave it there until my husband could pick me up with the car, and they agreed.

As I was looking around the shop more, I found a large photograph, framed, of the Heidelberg castle, and fell in love with it, immediately! Again, the price was right, so I purchased it. And, again, I asked if they could “hold” it for me until my husband could get there with the car – and they agreed.

This photo has hung over our bed ever since – no matter what house we lived it. Unfortunately, the photo has faded to a sepia tone.

Apparently the photographer did not “seal” the photo. Now that wouldn’t have been too bad, but I really liked the picture in color. We have a friend here who has the equipment to make a copy of the photo and enlarge it to the same size – in color. And he did. So we have our original photo back in color, and we are pleased.

As a footnote, our daughter, Karen, and her husband, Brian, found and gave us a miniature of the Heidelberg Gate. It is lighted from inside, and wonder of wonders – the small bulb that came with it all those years ago, is still burning – and it’s running 24/7/365!! It sits on a shelf and I can see it every single day – and enjoy that part of Heidelberg every day. Lovely!

~~~~~~~~~~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

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.

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