Friday, December 21, 2007

Liz in Wonderland (A Winter Wonderland, That Is)

Germany truly is a winter wonderland at this time of year, even without the snow. Being outside for more than 5 minutes means, at the very least, frozen toes and a frozen nose (if you have everything else covered up in multiple layers).

As a Florida girl, I'm super naíve, come winter. To give you an example, yesterday I ran out to the car, late for a doctor's appointment, expecting that I could get there in a hurry. Imagine my surprise when I found a layer of ice nearly a centimeter thick on every window of my car. The best part is, the day before, I scratched a thin layer of ice off of the windows, thinking, "This is too easy! What is everyone complaining about?" Ha!

Ice is everywhere... on the roads, on the trees, and across fields (both grass and soil), looking deceptively snow-like to the untrained (Florida) eye.

Really magnificent. And like clockwork, snow is forecasted for Christmas Eve. It doesn't get any better than that!

We don't have a tree yet, so when Tobi arrives today, we'll head out to find one that we like. Maybe we'll choose one from the meadow behind our house (meaning we would get to saw it ourselves... although I'd much prefer to dig it out, allowing us to replant it later).

And if we want to make it to the famous Nuremberg Christkindelsmarkt, today's the day. Going on the weekend prior to Christmas usually means large crowds and the occasional pickpocket. Not my bag, thank you very much.

But Nuremberg is without a doubt one of Germany's most stunning cities, and I absolutely love visiting it at Christmas time. It's home to the country's "Elisen Lebkuchen", and you can buy these gingerbread-like cookies in pretty collectible tins, depicting the city's illustrious, medieval skyline (with it's fortress-like castle and walls and multiple cathedrals). My favorites are the ones with little music boxes built in, playing songs such as "Oh come, let us adore him".

Look out for pictures soon, but in the meantime, tell me, how will you be spending the days prior to Christmas?

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