Munich Part III – Misc./Tobi’s, Englischer Garten, Lenbachhaus, Cordula’s

When you travel with young children, you can’t spend the whole day traipsing from one side of a city to the other. Kids need to stick to their routines as closely as possible, even when away from home. That means meals and snacks at fixed times of day, coming home for that all-important nap, and limiting outings to what will interest them. We spent a lot more time “at home” than I would if I were traveling alone.

We were so, so, so lucky to have a friend offer his home to stay in instead of paying a lot of money to squeeze into a hotel room. For one, it’s nice to have a kitchen, so you don’t have to eat every meal out. Tobi has a three bedroom apartment for just himself, so Jeff and I had our own room separate from the girls, who shared a room (which doubles as Tobi’s extended closet, so all his clothes got perfumed with Eau de Dirty Diaper).

We mostly kept a schedule diametrically opposite from Tobi’s. The girls would wake up for the day around 3:00am, just as Tobi would return from his night at the clubs! It was almost as if we had the apartment to ourselves (which we did for a couple days around Christmas when Tobi went home to Landshut to be with his family).

I love Tobi – he was my best friend in Munich and we’ve stayed close over the last decade – but Adele was not so keen on him. I’m not sure why; when he came to visit us in Rochester, they were buddy-buddy. But on this trip, her shyness got the best of her, and she stayed away from him as best she could manage. She would hide in the coat closet or under the dining room table to avoid talking to him. Broke poor Tobi’s heart! Finally, on the fifth day we were there, she deigned to talk to him.

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Adele helps Tobi wrap his Christmas presents.

Sadly, May got sick right after we arrived (as is often the case with air travel).

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I was supposed to go out for drinks with Tobi this night, but I didn’t want to leave Jeff on his own with a sick, not-sleeping-well May. We spent the day watching vintage Christmas cartoons. 

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May’s face!

The next day, Jeff did stay home with May while I took Adele out to yet another Weihnachtsmarkt. On our walk to the Chinesischer Turm in the Englischer Garten, we passed by CADU, which just so happens to be the place I met Adele’s daddy for the very first time! (Café an der Uni means cafe at the university.)

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I put Adele in May’s stroller, because the walk was about two miles. She looks like such a baby in the stroller!

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Entering the Englischer Garten, one of the most beautiful places to stroll in the whole world!

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An excellent playground in the park, with none of the unnecessary safety features of American playgrounds.

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Running up the hill in front of the Monopteros.

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***Big jump in time*** Christmas happened in between these pictures, but that post will come later.

The day after Christmas is still a holiday in Germany. It’s called Zweiter Weihnachtsfeiertag (Second Christmas Holiday) or Stephanstag (the Feast of St. Stephan). Most businesses are still closed, but the museums are not.

This is deeply embarrassing to me as an art historian, but I’ve never brought my children to a museum. Part of the reason is that there wasn’t a really great one in Rochester (yes, some people will argue in favor of the Memorial Art Gallery), but also I didn’t think they would be particularly interested, though some children would be. Munich has some of the best art in the world, so I knew it would be the perfect place and time to introduce them.

The Lehnbachhaus was one of my favorite museums when I studied art in Munich (I was about to say my favorite, but there were too many other good choices). It’s a modern art museum (modern in the art historical sense, going back to the late 1800s), but focuses on the Blaue Reiter movement.

And, oh yeah, it finally started to snow late on Christmas night, so there was this:

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This painting (“Alexander Sacharoff” by Alexej von Jawlensky) means a whole heck of a lot to me.

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The girls did incredibly well at their first museum. Adele offered such insightful commentary on each piece that one of the security guards came over to tell me how impressed she was.

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Adele found this perfectly pre-rolled snowball outside the museum.

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Oh boy, did those girls love the snow. You know what else they loved? Pork. (How’s that for a smooth segue?) (Sorry, Daddy. Pork is really tasty.)

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Schinken bracelet.

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Schinken water bottle.

This is the longest of all the miscellaneous photo posts. Here’s a little palette cleanser:

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Sunrise over the snowy rooftops of Maxvorstadt.

Once it started snowing on Christmas night, it didn’t stop until after we left. The snow kept falling and piling up higher and higher. Adele was ecstatic; May less so (though that was her own damn fault for refusing to keep her mittens on!).

On our last day in the city before moving to Marriah’s house, we trudged through the snow and ice to visit my friends Cordula and Thomas and their daughter Theresa,

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On a bridge over the Isar River with the Deutsches Museum in the background.

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Tea with Thomas & Cordula in their lovely apartment.

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Theresa insisted on sharing a seat with Adele. much to Adele’s consternation.

It was actually pretty amusing to watch Adele and Theresa play together, since neither spoke the other’s language (Theresa blithely ignored the one thing that Adele could say in German, “Nein! Nein! Nein!”)

There were more photos that I intended to add to this post (the good ones from my phone), but something is wrong with WordPress and it won’t let me upload any more. I’m hoping I haven’t maxed out my allotted storage!

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