Monday, March 05, 2007

Back in the Saddle Again

Avenging Unicorn Play Set: “Everyone wants an imaginary unicorn friend that they can call forth to smite their enemies.”
I never knew I wanted one, but now that I know it exists, I can’t imagine living without it.

We needed to get out of the house this weekend and stretch our legs, so we took a little day trip on Sunday. For the last 3+ years, we’ve lived a half-hour away from the town I lived in as an army brat; we visited it for the first time yesterday.

The only address I could find was from my birth certificate, so John did his Internet magic and printed out a map or 2 to help us find it. We shot right past it on our way into Darmstadt, but since we also planned to see a couple of other things south of town, we decided to check it out on our way back out.

We made our way to the city-center, which is where you usually find any sites of interest in a German town. Turns out that Darmstadt is centered around a giant shopping complex, but there were a few interesting places interspersed among the shops. Nothing looked familiar.

Once we hit the old buildings, the playground, and the ice cream shop, we found our car and headed back out of town. Due to my bad directions, we ended up making a big loop to get back to the military housing, but find it we did. We took some photos of the building number on my birth certificate, then drove along the “village” and took some random photos of buildings. They definitely looked familiar to me, but none of the surrounding area did. There was a fence around the whole thing and a couple of guard posts, which I am sure I would have remembered if they had been there when we lived there. But that was almost 30 years ago; things change.

Afterwards, we found Burg Frankenstein (Frankenstein Castle) and walked around in it and took tons of photos. My dad likes to tell about the haunted house they (used to) set up at Halloween there. Looks like they still do. I remember going there once.

Then we headed for the Felsenmeer (Sea of Boulders). We were also there when I was a kid, but the parts I remembered weren’t the way I remembered them. I guess that is normal. Unfortunately, the name didn’t ring a bell when John was planning out our trip, so I ended up tromping around in the woods and mud in these.

Up until we had to hike back up the hill to get to our car, Hannah declared it was the Best. Outing. Ever. She got to climb over boulders. She used her walking stick to christen all the more interesting ones, like Big Rock and Whale. She ran out of steam at the end, though. Her last attempt? “I dub thee ‘stupid-I-have-no-name-for-you’.”

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