13 July 2007

Day 16: Starnberg–Münsing–Tutzing

The weather today was the nicest we've had so far: warm and clear. It was the ideal time to go see Starnberg lake as it is supposed to be seen, as a weekend vacation spot for people from Munich. However, getting to lake involved walking Armin and Colleen's dog Cuba there. At twelve weeks old, Cuba hasn't quite figured out how to "go for a walk" and simply resists the whole way, biting at the leash as if someone was playing tug a war, running toward anything that moves, and stopping in the middle of the street for no reason. Armin had to just pick her up and carry her part of the way. Once we reached the lake, which is gorgeous in the bright sunshine, Cuba encountered the emblems of Wittelsbach Dynasty: swans. And the swans didn't like her at all. They floated past with their ducklings and began a creepy hissing sound directed at Cuba. I've never before seen a swan rise out of the water like a snake and make such a ghastly noise. Here is the Wittelsbach Dynasty, rebelling a Cuban invasion:

And here is Cuba, on a "walk":

We returned to Colleen and Armin's apartment and met with the parents of one of Colleen's friends, Nadine. Bernard and Karen are both Berlin natives, but now live in Gauting, the town next to Starnberg. We followed their car out to a small village in the countryside, Münsing, just beyond Berg on Lake Starnberg (where King Ludwig accidentally drowned/committed suicide/was murdered). This is deep Bavarian country: rolling hills with forests and onion-domed churches on the horizon. They took us to a biergarten that looks over the peaceful green fields, sheep wearing bells included. I had the weißwürster, the traditional Bavarian white sausage. They don’t look appealing, but they are very good. After the meal, we took a picturesque half-hour circular walk around the fields and soaked up the best weather we've experienced so far.

We returned to Colleen and Armin's apartment briefly (and watched Cuba chew and chew and chew and chew on a "pig's ear" Armin purchased for her) before setting out to the town of Tutzing and the end of the train line to catch a boat across Starberg Lake. The boat would eventually end at Starnberg where we started…but when we got to the dock we found the last boat had departed. But it didn't really matter; with the gorgeous weather and beautiful view of the lake from the other side, we enjoyed strolling along the shore and a stopover at a very popular and picturesque biergarten at the edge of the water.

If you've been following along, you'll realize that we walked a huge distance today. But it was all amidst gorgeous pure Bavarian Wonders, so that makes all the difference. We could even see the snow capped peaks of the most distant Alps across Starnberg Lake.

On the other hand, as the group historian, I have to admit that I'm eager to get to a few more museums and old buildings instead of soaking in the landscape. I certainly saw enough of it today.

Dinner will take place here in the apartment; Mom is making Sherry Beef. I may go to local dance here in Starnberg later along with Colleen's friend Melanie.