I have no idea why I keep referring to my husband’s visiting family as The Germans, but I guess I amuse myself 🙂
K’s mother came to this country when she was 14, so I have gotten used to eating my fair share of sauerbraten and potato pancakes when we visit their house. She has family visiting the U.S. from Germany, and they’ve spent the last few weeks using the IL’s house as the base and traveling to Niagara Falls, Maine, Plymouth, and of course, NYC. It was quite funny, the weekend K and I spent in Woodstock, VT, they were visiting Woodstock, NY.
We were supposed to go downstate to see them today, but we have to go next weekend again for BIL’s graduation party so my MIL surprised us Thursday night by saying everyone was coming up to our place today. Yay! Ha. But we scrambled around cleaning up the house to pass a German’s inspection (LOL!) because I’ve read way too many old-fashioned books that seem to tell me they all have super clean houses, so I couldn’t bear to have a dirty one. Then my MIL must have gotten up at the butt-crack of dawn because my ILs actually left the house at 10:30am today to make it up here to us. My MIL will proudly tell you it takes her about 5 hours from the time she gets up to the time she can leave the house with all it does to take her get ready, so we were a little shocked (and scrambling to clean up faster :)).
I met Renee and Hartmut (K has stayed with them in Germany before) and we all headed out the Biergarten for lunch. Hartmut really wanted to go. I kind of thought it was the equivalent of me going to Germany and eating McDonald’s, but he seemed pretty psyched.
It was pretty empty at about 1 o’clock in the afternoon, but that made it much easier to hear each other than the last time we came.
Hartmut was REALLY excited. He didn’t come out of his shell until he had a Hofbräu Dunkel in one hand and a Fleischkäse in the other. He proclaimed the biergarten to be pretty authentic.
As for me, I normally don’t drink beer, only a Framboise Lambic because it’s girly, but Renee inspired me to have a Radler, which is basically a Pilsner mixed with Sprite. The cute British bartender (don’t worry, my husband knows I thought he was cute :)) told me they call it a Shandy in England.
I enjoyed it very much!
After the biergarten, we headed over to the New York State Museum. We tend to bring everyone who visits us here, so K and I have been here lots of times. And except for a few exhibits, it doesn’t really change.
Luckily, we didn’t need to see the Adirondack exhibits for the millionth time today, as everyone really just wanted to see the 9/11 exhibit. I went to Ground Zero itself about 3 months after 9/11 (would have been sooner since I’m from NY, but I was in my second year of law school in Colorado at the time) and to this day have the images of the area imprinted on my brain. No matter how many times I go to the NYS Museum, even though it’s about 200 miles from Ground Zero, it still affects me.
343 NYC firefighters and paramedics, 23 NYPD officers, and 37 Port Authority police officers died that day, most of them rushing into the buildings as thousands were rushing out. One NYC firefighter was killed by a man jumping off the top floors of one of the towers.
This steel girder once stood straight and tall, the length of three floors in one of the towers. This girder was around floors 71-74, about 30 floors from where one of the planes hit, but it was still completely destroyed from the heat of the fires of the plane fuel.
As a New Yorker, I don’t think I will be ever able to see these things, even in a “sterile” museum miles away, without feeling some of the pain I felt that day.
After we pulled ourselves away from the museum, we headed back to our house to sit out on the deck and drink and talk. Most of it, I didn’t understand, since about all the German I speak revolves around two words: “bitte” and “danke schön.” But before we left for dinner later, I took a family pic of everyone.
Tomorrow K and I are going to attempt to bike to the Farmer’s Market for the first time, but I’m a bit scared. I wonder if the milk will be ok on the way back? Hmm, maybe we should reconsider…
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