Sunday, August 31, 2008

Romantic Germany

Lately I've been preoccupied with the new novel and spending QT with the fambly before I head back to Galway (tomorrow, weeeeeee!) Thrift-shopping has become an increasingly frequent family activity, and look what ten-dollar treasure I found at the Moorestown Friends' Thrift Shop yesterday:


It was originally $20, but all books were half price this weekend, and my mom got it for me as an early birthday present. (Thanks, Ma!)

Just look at the dedication!:



I guess this makes me a bonafide book nerd, but I love when a book has initial letters, the more ornate the better.

I may have neglected to mention that Kelly and I are heading to Germany in mid-September, which is part of why I was attracted to this fascinating old book. We're spending a few days in Berlin and a few days in the Harz mountains, about three hours' train ride west of the capital. The Grimms got most of their fairy tales from the villages of the Harz, and the region is steeped in witchy legends. Peeeeeerfect. One of the highlights will be a trip here.)

And here:

The first castle is in Wernigerode, the second (the Kaiserhaus) in Goslar (2 hours west by train). Funny how I would've most likely overlooked Goslar and all its attractions were it not for this book:
You appreciate the half-timbered dwellings so much that your appetite is whetted for better ones. If you are persistent you find them at the head of the Markt-Strasse. Crescit indulgens! The taste grows upon you. Presently, unless you are very reserved or blasé, you give a cry of pleasure. You have discovered the Brusttuch, a crooked late-Gothic gildhouse named after an indispensible part of the local peasant's costume. It has an amazingly sharp, high ridge. Its lowest story is of picturesque rough stone; its second is half-timbered and filled with such homely, humorous carvings as riot along the streets of Brunswick. Among them are reliefs of convivial monkeys and of witches riding their broomsticks to the Brocken...
I love the florid descriptions in these old books! It'll be interesting to see how much (or little?) the place has changed in 99 years; it's a little eerie reading about these places as yet untouched by the Third Reich and all its horrors. (By the way, the V-2 factory was located in a subterranean factory in the Harz. Parts of it are open to the public, or so I hear, though I think we'd need a car to get there.)

Anyway, expect a load of pictures here when I get back to Galway in late September...

1 comment:

Kate said...

Sir Pooh will be jealous.