Brian Markowich

Brian and Amy

Brian Markowich

We are aircraft engineers and part time dog trainers. We love to travel and see beautiful scenery and wildlife around the world.




We walked to Frankental again to get our 5 miles. It’s a nice stroll and you can find something new to see every time. Today we found a statue of “Der Treidler” along the path. A Treidler would pull (by hand and back) small boats down the River. Amy tried to help him. After our Wine-thirty treats, we took a taxi to dinner at a small restaurant owned and operated by friends of Britta and Osse. We tried some good German food (Wienerschnitzel and Rumpsteak mit Zwiebel (with onions)) and lots of fried potatoes. Brian got to try a local specialty of crepes with bacon, white asparagus and greens only grown here (Baerlauch). It's like wild garlic or ramps for you West Virginians. It was a very nice evening and it was late when we got ... read more
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We decided to go for a long walk to Frankenthal, the little town we always bike to when we’re here. It’s only a mile or two. We walked through some misting rain but then it cleared up. We checked out the little shops and had a pretzel and gelato. In honor of our old friend, Dinata, a super-blogger who takes wonderful zoomed in flower and animal pictures, we tried for some nature pics. All the flowers here are beautiful. The snail wasn't beautiful but we needed some fauna with the flora. We got home in time for Peggie and Jerry to arrive. A little soup and dumplings and they took a rest. We trekked out to the REWE (ReeVuuh not ReeeWeee) Supermarket for wonderful salad and fresh vegetables for dinner. We had wine thirty (of course!) ... read more
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We arrived early with no lines or paperwork in Customs. It seemed too good to be true. Then we hopped a regional train to Mannheim. We took a Taxi to Aunt Eva’s and were there before lunch. Easy Peasy! Eva made us soup for lunch. We unpacked and took a walk around the neighborhood to stretch our legs. Amy found a playground to stretch in. Brian wouldn’t let her climb to the top because we aren’t part of the wonderful German healthcare system! Our Travel Gnome is with us and he made a few friends on the walk and in Eva’s garden. We had our traditional “wine-thirty” in the afternoon with Sect, snacks and mini-pizzas. Eva made us lasagna and salad. Britta, Osse, and Nick the dog came by to say hello and eat with us. ... read more
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Today we set off on our 4th trip to Germany for the wedding of Elena, Brian's cousin. This time we are adding on a short Switzerland trip to see a new spot in the world. We dropped off our dogs at their fancy suite at the kennel and headed to the airport. We were flying from Washington Dulles to Newark and then to Frankfurt. We started our trip with no drama. We took turns walking around the airport to get our “steps” for the day. As you’ll see, our lives are now ruled by these little bracelets that scold us when we don’t make our daily walking goal. We have to find ways to walk about 5 miles a day. We got a few strange looks but we just kept walking in circles. The excitement started ... read more

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Ludwigshafen am Rhein September 17th 2013

Our last day has arrived. We got up at 0530 to get ready, say goodbyes and be on time for our early van pickup. We’ll really miss our days with Aunt Eva and getting to spend time in person with Mom and Jerry. Our family in Germany is very gracious with their time, their energy, their ideas for excursions. and of course, their food and wine (!). They are truly what make our trips very special. We are a few years older and maybe our adventures now are a little more modest than our 2005 New Zealand glacier hiking, whale watching, and forest hikes. Despite that, we hope you found some fun trailing along with us. It was a great, low-key trip that focused more on visiting and that was exactly what we all needed. Hey, ... read more
True Love
Home

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Ludwigshafen am Rhein September 16th 2013

Today was a very windy, rainy, cold day. Even so, we decided we should bike around and pick up some last items to take home. We had a nice lunch of “Schnitzel im Brotchen” at a café and then sped home to avoid the raindrops. We packed our bags and made some last “wurst” sandwiches to take on the plane. We had lamb, more schnitzel, potatoes, salad, and a huge bowl of hot chili peppers for dinner. Britta, Osse and Nik stopped by one last time to say goodbye and pick up their bikes. Thank you, Britta and Osse, for loaning them to us and giving us some mobility! We’ll miss everyone but are looking forward to getting back to our own house and dogs.... read more
You have to look closely

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Ludwigshafen am Rhein September 15th 2013

Today we set out to visit a “Burg” in Southern Germany. Britta and Osse took us to Burg Berwartstein. Berwartstein "Castle" belongs to a category of rock castles that were part of Palatinate defenses during the Middle Ages. Stairs, passages and rooms are carved out of rock to form a complete living system which was essential to defending the castle. There’s a good story about one of the original owners, the Knight (Ritter) Hans Trapp. He was given Berwartstein as a fiefdom and became a robber baron. Kind of like Robin Hood but he kept the money, stealing from travelers and fighting with the monks in Wissembourg who felt he should not have the castle. His symbol was a raven, which is known for taking shiny things like rings. His legend grew with children in France ... read more
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I'm King of the World

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Bad Durkheim September 14th 2013

Today is Britta and Osse’s daughter, Lotte’s, birthday brunch. We skipped the big breakfast and Brian opted for a run while Amy caught up on the blog. We drove about 20 minutes to a suburb of Bad Durkheim (remember that from the Wurstmarkt Day?) and got to see everyone all together. Lotte is studying Theology and Aunt Eva gave her a Chinese Bible that belonged to her great-grandparents (the parents of Uncle Johannes) from 1916, who were missionaries just like the Wilhelm family. What an interesting connection to the past! The food was an assortment of everything you could imagine. Brian and Amy took a detour after brunch to go back to the Wurstmarkt to look around in the daylight. We did some souvenir shopping but didn’t have much luck. Britta picked us up and we ... read more
Chinese Bible
Olga
family photo

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Ludwigshafen am Rhein September 13th 2013

Today, Brian and Amy went to the “Luisenpark” in Mannheim. This is a big, beautiful park with flowers, gardens and animals. Very much like Central Park in New York City. It was too hard to bike there because it’s big city driving and you had to find a bridge to cross the Rhine. We took a taxi which cost a little more Euro compared to the bus/train but the convenience and speed couldn’t be beat (next time, we’ll learn the public transit system and buy day passes!). We lucked out with the weather. It warmed up just enough and the sun came out often. We walked through sculptures, roamed all kinds of gardens, saw the Chinese pagoda, visited all the animals (penguins for Amy and snakes for Brian!), played in the playgrounds, and even spent some ... read more
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Boat Ride

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Ludwigshafen am Rhein September 12th 2013

The weather looked a little better today so we went back to Frankenthal so Peggie and Jerry could do some shopping, too. Brian and Amy also wanted to pick up some things that would have been too hard to carry on the bicycles. We saw a beautiful Belgian Tervuren like Griffin and Edge and spoke with the owner. Made us a little homesick for our own pups. Amy bought some things for the bookshelf, an ornament and some scarves. Brian wants to go back and look again when we have more time. We might even try the Ludwigshafen mall which is new. It started raining on us a little so we scampered back home for some white asparagus soup which was perfect for the chilly day. Tonight was leftover night. Amy made a crisp for wine:30 ... read more
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