Lübeck and Neustadt Part 2

Happy New Year from Lübeck! Andreas and I returned to the city after our short stay in Magdeburg. We were able to book one of our favorite Airbnbs in the Stüwes Gang. The house is a historical landmark. I have written about this Airbnb and Lubeck before here, here and here. The house is very old has been renovated in creative ways showcasing much of the original architecture. It’s tiny, but very cool. We were able to get our favorite upstairs room and were happy to meet a friendly couple renting one of the rooms below us. Ciaran and Michele were traveling from Cologne where Ciaran, originally from Ireland, owns an Irish bar called Buskers. I enjoyed the opportunity to speak English with someone, especially someone with an Irish accent. He was also nice enough to leave me the book he was reading when he left.

We took it easy this week in the city. Andreas found the local library and we spent a few hours there following our interests and discovering new ideas.

We also revisited the Behnhaus Museum to see some local art, and for fun we made a point of trying new streets and different routes to and from the house.

While changing our route we also discovered some new artwork.

We have found a little bar that we are fond of called Kandinsky. If we happened to be in that part of the city in the afternoon, we would stop in for a glühwein. The bar is small, dark, mostly empty and a little smoky from the patrons and the candles. I like the atmosphere while Andreas likes the alcohol and local news papers and magazines. I think they are mostly known for their whiskey selection.

Andreas with his gluhwein and magazine.
My first view of Kandinsky through my rain covered, mask fogged glasses.

To celebrate on New Year’s Eve Andreas picked a fancy restaurant near us. The Schabbelhaus was originally a bakery, a museum and then hosted restaurants. It was destroyed in the war and rebuilt. His parents had celebrated the christening of his cousin Petra there in 1962. His mother remembers all of the details including the wine they bought and how much it cost. For dinner Andreas chose the full New Year’s Eve menu with four courses and dessert. I picked something smaller. The food, and ambience was perfect for the occasion. I wish we were able to dress a little nicer, but when you travel with only a backpack, extra fancy clothes are not an option.

At midnight we stood at the kitchen window in the Airbnb and watched the fireworks and drones in the sky while listening to the church bells ring.

Behold the worst photo I’ve ever taken of New Year’s Eve fireworks.

We began our new year with another visit to Andreas’ parents in Neustadt in Holstein. Christa prepared a lovely brunch for us. She also fixed the fraying straps of Andreas’ backpack while he and his father worked on Lothar’s old laptop. In the afternoon we met her younger brother Klaus and Andreas’ cousin Kirsten for coffee and cake. Andreas hadn’t seen them in 36 years. They are lovely people and I hope we are able to meet them again soon.

As I write this, we are in Diez (more about that soon) and we have learned that our flight home has been cancelled. We are working with Orbitz to figure something out and have been unable to reach our airline. We were scheduled to travel to Copenhagen next for Andreas’ work, but we have cancelled due to their crazy high Covid numbers. We will be traveling back to Lübeck to the apartment we stayed in at the beginning of our trip. We feel that it has the best work space for us and we do need to get back to work. Also, as far as Andreas can figure out with the numbers available to him, Covid cases are lower there than in the USA, Denmark and other areas in Germany.

All photos by Dragonfly Leathrum

Tschüss Lübeck I’ll miss you the most.

Lubeck Germany. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Lubeck Germany. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Andreas and I were not back in Bremerhaven more than a couple of hours from our last trip when we realized this week’s early July weather was going to be very cool. We decided to take advantage and travel again before the next heat wave. We set out to my favorite city Lübeck to say goodbye to Andreas’ parents and Aunt; our third trip to Lübeck this year. (Last summer 2018) (Christmas 2018)

The town of Lubeck created in marzipan in the window of Niederegger. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
The town of Lubeck created in marzipan in the window of Niederegger. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

At our favorite Airbnb. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
At our favorite Airbnb. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Andreas working in the Airbnb. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Andreas working in the Airbnb. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Wine in the Gang in front of our Airbnb with the old school Lubeck gang. From left to right: Christa, Lothar, Andreas and Annemarie. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Wine in the Gang in front of our Airbnb with the old school Lubeck gang. From left to right: Christa, Lothar, Andreas and Annemarie. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

In two days, we visited all of the familiar places. We stayed at our usual Airbnb in the tiny passage or Gang. (I looked up these passages and learned that two scenes from Nosferatu were filmed in Lübeck), we ate at our favorite restaurants and walked around the beautiful, old city. Since we’ve recently become step-grandparents toy stores are newly interesting and as always, time and money were spent in bookstores.

Leaving the Kartoffelkeller restaurant. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Leaving the Kartoffelkeller restaurant. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Dinner at the Alte Zolln where Andreas' grandfather used to drink. The woman with the blue shirt and watch is local and was sitting alone. The other three are visiting Lubeck from Scotland and were seated at her table because seats were available. She immediately asked about their thoughts on Brexit. They replied that they absolutely didn't want to talk about politics. within ten minutes they were talking about politics. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Dinner at the Alte Zolln where Andreas’ grandfather used to drink. The woman with the blue shirt and watch is local and was sitting alone. The other three are visiting Lubeck from Scotland and were seated at her table because seats were available. She immediately asked about their thoughts on Brexit. They replied that they absolutely didn’t want to talk about politics. within ten minutes they were talking about politics. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Bookstore in Lubeck. Photo by Andreas Muenchow
Bookstore in Lubeck. Photo by Andreas Muenchow

Thankfully, Andreas’ parents, Aunt Annemarie and his mother’s friend from school, Sieglinde were able to join us for dinner with just a few days’ notice. It’s always fun to walk around the city with them because they have so many memories of being young there.

Sisters. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Sisters. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Zekelinda and Christa. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Sieglinde and Christa. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Annemarie, Zekelinda and Christa at Schlumachers. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Annemarie, Sieglinde and Christa at Schlumachers. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Our new find was the Europäisches Hansemuseum. The museum site was originally a castle built in 1100, which turned into a Friary, which turned into an almshouse, which turned into a law court and prison which became the museum. Thus.. a really cool collection of buildings with remnants of all of these periods can be viewed.

Andreas in the old court room. Hansemuseum. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Andreas in the old court room. Hansemuseum. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Angels in the architecture from one of the original castle and friary. Hansemuseum. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Angels in the architecture from the original castle and friary. Hansemuseum. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Stained glass from around 1400 that survived the bombings in WWII. Hansemuseum. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Stained glass from around 1400 that survived the bombings in WWII. Hansemuseum. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Just a couple of weeks are left in Andreas’ sabbatical, I hope this cool spell lasts and we can travel a little more.

Walking towards Marienkiche. It was built between 1250-1350 on the highest point of the island. After WWII Andreas' Uncle helped to rebuild the wooden structures of the steeples and his father ran the new telephone wires. Photo by Andreas Muenchow
Walking towards Marienkiche. It was built between 1250-1350 on the highest point of the island. After WWII Andreas’ Uncle helped to rebuild the wooden structures of the steeples and his father ran the new telephone wires. Photo by Andreas Muenchow

 

 

Lübeck, Germany: Island Living at it’s Best

At the bus stop in Breherhaven on the way to Lubeck. I believe those two are playing rock, paper, scissors, Batman, bunny foo foo and are stuck in a draw. Photo by Andreas Muenchow
At the bus stop in Bremerhaven on the way to Lubeck. I believe those two are playing rock, paper, scissors, Batman, bunny foo foo and are stuck in a foo foo draw. Photo by Andreas Muenchow

Sometimes in life you pick favorites. It’s discouraged, right? Even though people ask for an opinion of a favorite this or that all of the time, we are encouraged to keep an open mind to discover new things. I have a favorite German city, just in case you were wondering. It’s Lubeck, and yes, I do have an open mind about it. I expect to discover another even more wonderful city during my year abroad, but in six months Lübeck still wins.

The Dom through the trees. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
The Dom through the trees. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

I convinced my brother and his family that we must visit Lübeck during our eleven-day excursion. Andreas and I chose our favorite Airbnb and booked the whole thing last spring.

One of the bathrooms in our Airbnb. You have to be very careful not to hit your head on that beam when you use the potty. The ceiling is low. I love this place. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
One of the bathrooms in our Airbnb. You have to be very careful not to hit your head on that beam when you use the potty. The ceiling is low. I love this place. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Three bedrooms and two shared kitchens and baths. I thought that having this much “space” would be good for the six of us. I wasn’t aware that what I think is a lot of space is very tiny for other people. My brother and his family are use to more space and more bathrooms. The Airbnb was referred to as “another one of Dragonfly’s dollhouses”. Ha ha, so true. I can see it now in retrospect and have learned a lesson. Sorry to smoosh you in there, family.

Andreas and nephews play Skat in the "dollhouse" living room. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Andreas and nephews play Skat in the “dollhouse” living room. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

In Lübeck we found ourselves splitting off into little groups. Brother and sister-in-law to the Christmas market for Glühwein while Uncle Andreas and Auntie Fly hang out with the kids, sister-in-law and I yarn and resale shopping, Andreas and shorter nephew Geocaching the island with seven finds! We also went out to dinner as a group. My husband is a very patient menu translator, a saint really.

Sister-in-law and I found this amazing yarn and fabric store. I visited this store three times in three days. Heaven. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Sister-in-law and I found this amazing yarn and fabric store. I visited this store three times in three days. Heaven. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

We planned one special lunch to introduce my family to Andreas’ local family as we were newly married three weeks before. We chose a restaurant in the cellar of the Heiligen-Geist Hospital. It is one of the oldest existing social institutions in the world founded in 1227. I regret not photographing the interior, it was cool and I hope to tour the rest of the building when we visit again. (Check it out here) Andreas’ parents, Aunt and older cousin were able to attend. We had a very nice lunch and I would recommend the restaurant. (English menus! Andreas had the day off.)

The author with her new German family feeling very lucky and loved. Photo by Patrick LeathrumThe author with her new German family feeling very lucky and loved. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
The author with her new German family feeling very lucky and loved. Photo by Patrick Leathrum

After lunch we visited Jakobikirche. The church of the seafarers built around 1300. Andreas’ aunt mentioned that she hadn’t been inside in years. She said it’s where the town stored the bread reserves during WWII.

Jakobikirche The church of the seafarers. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Jakobikirche The church of the seafarers. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

My brother and entourage moved on to Berlin the next day so we invited Andreas’ parents to join us for a night in the Airbnb. They are local to Lübeck and we thought they would enjoy seeing the place and its special location.

Enjoying the slideshow of our Arctic trip on the computer while relaxing in our Airbnb. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Enjoying the slideshow of our Arctic trip on the computer while relaxing in our Airbnb. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

We toured the city and visited the large Buniamshof sports complex that Christa’s father managed from 1950 to 1973.

Christa lived on the second floor of this building at the Buniamshof Sports Complex as a teenager. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Christa lived on the second floor of this building at the Buniamshof Sports Complex as a teenager and later Andreas and his siblings spent many days playing here as children. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Impossible sometimes to take a photo of these two. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Impossible sometimes to take a photo of these two. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

We had lunch in the Im Alten Zolln bar nearby that Christa’s father liked to visit. When he visited for too long Lothar would fetch him home in the days before Andreas was born.  It was nice listening to Andreas’ parents reminisce about the days before they were married.

Lunch at Im Alten Zolln. Lots of family history here. The also have awesome kartoffelpuffer with smoked salmon. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Lunch at Im Alten Zolln. Lots of family history here. The also have awesome kartoffelpuffer with smoked salmon. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

Lothar and Santa at Im Alten Zolln. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
Lothar and Santa at Im Alten Zolln. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum

The next morning, after a huge breakfast at Café Calma where Christa made a beautiful salad bouquet, we were back on the train happy to be returning to Bremerhaven and a few quiet months at home. Goodbye Lübeck, you are my go to place for art supplies (no good arts and crafts places in Bremerhaven), fun cafe’s, cute shops and beautiful churches. I can’t get lost when I visit because you are a small island and that comforts me. Until next time, my favorite.

The author and Christa at Cafe Calma. Christa holds her bouquet created from the fancy salads accompanying our breakfasts. Photo by Andreas Muenchow
The author and Christa at Cafe Calma. Christa holds her bouquet created from the fancy salads accompanying our breakfasts. Photo by Andreas Muenchow

What should we do with these pretty flowers? ha ha. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum
What shall we do with these pretty flowers and bits of baby greens? ha ha. Photo by Dragonfly Leathrum