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Published: December 29th 2015
Apartments built into the hill so that they look like in Bag-End.
On the first weekend of October I went to see my friend Christiane in Meiningen. The town is rather small and located in the centre of a triangle between Leipzig, Kassel, and Würzburg, surrounded by forests and meadows. It took me a while to get there by train, also because the journey was kind of chaotic with delays, but finally I arrived and Christiane and I had a sundowner on a roof top bar, Fronveste
, a former prison. Then we went for a fantastic vegan dinner to Sächsischer Hof
. In Meiningen it is not common to be a vegetarian or even a vegan, but Christiane apparently was such a great ambassador of veganism that the cook was more than happy to suggest a wonderful vegan meal to us.
The next day we went to Auenland
, ‘The Shire’ in English. All ‘Lord of the Rings’ fans certainly know what this is – the home of Bilbo and Frodo! The owners of Auenland built apartments into the hill so that it looks like a street in Bag-End, super nice. The village is surrounded by forests and nature and by an adventure playground and a summer toboggan run. Of course we had to try
Colourful trees agains the splendid blue sky.
it all out. The playground was lots of fun with all kinds of buildings and trees to climb, suspended bridges to cross, slides to use, and swings to sit on. What was even more fun though was the summer toboggan run. We were the only guests to use it and we had five runs in a row, speeding up from run to run. With huge smiles on our faces we headed off for a nice walk in the forest that had already turned yellow and red and looked absolutely stunning against the blue sky.
After a quick lunch we returned to Meiningen to have coffee in the Museumscafé
, a baroque café located on the top floor of Elisabethenburg Palace. We tried some LPG-Kuchen, a kind of cake that was made in the old producers’ cooperatives in former German Democratic Republic. It consists of biscuits soaked in Schnaps on a cake base, topped by butter cream and chocolate. It was very yummy.
Afterwards we went back to Christiane’s place and got changed for an evening in the theatre. Christiane had given me tickets for ‘Emilia Galotti’ by Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, performed in the famous Meininger Theater
. Even the location is
More of the autumn landscape we saw on our walk.
spectacular, baroque and very splendid. Seeing the piece made the visit even more special!
We did not go for after show drinks since we wanted to get up early the next morning. So we left the house at 7 am the next day to drive from Meiningen to the next village, Römhild, and see the fog that lies in the valleys and the sunrise. It was just magic, like in a fairy tale. We drove through the valley and stopped every now and then to enjoy the view. When the sun had come up we walked up Kleiner Gleichberg, a mountain not far from Römhild. There used to be a castle and village up there, and the mountain is still full of rocks. We had breakfast in the ruins and enjoyed the view of the surrounding valley. The sun was not out and the sky was grey, but the view was beautiful anyway.
On our way back into Meiningen we stopped in Römhild, a medieval village with old half-timbered houses and a castle. Then we drove back to Meiningen, had Indian food for lunch (yes, there IS an Indian restaurant in Meiningen!) and then went to the theatre
The adventure playground with Christiane on a suspended brigde having a good time.
once more. This time it was an afternoon show for children, and it was the fairy tale ‘The Lighter’, played by rod puppets. The show was just amazing and special because the puppeteers kind of interacted with the puppets as well. I definitely enjoyed it! Too soon the weekend was over and I had to catch my train back to Hamburg. Thank you Christiane for a wonderful weekend!
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