Rocky Raccoon, Miami, Florida, USA


Posted Jan 17, 2013, 3:05 pm
Hi all,
I'm Rocky,

Rocky Raccoon, a cultured city raccoon.

I love music, especially the Beatles, whom I owe my name by the way. After many adventure stories told by our guests, I decided to become a Toyvoyager too. So, here I am, ready to start. When I woke up this morning, I did what a raccoon must: I washed my breakfast egg.

Otherwise mommy makes it. But to make a good impression, I got it done today myself. Then I went to the balcony.

Snow, lots of snow.

Brrr, cold and wet.

Snow is not my thing. Sitting in a warm blanket,

and eat a muffin I like much better.

So,  now I have to inform me what I must do to be able to travel. I'll see you later.
Rocky Raccoon

Posted Jan 18, 2013, 2:22 pm
Hi all,
Today I had gummy bears for breakfast, which I do not have to wash.

Is much simpler. After breakfast, I googled my name. 1'610'000 hits. I was very flattered until I noticed: not mean me. Beatles, Beatles, Beatles.

I read about 999'998 entries with the realization that the Beatles wrote a song about me. How nice.
  I heard a few songs

and looked at pictures - Abbey Road.

I have run across these pedestrian crossing.
Maybe I'll come to London one day. We will see.
Until then, Rocky Raccoon

Posted Jan 20, 2013, 1:26 pm
Hello world,
This morning I was sitting at my computer very early and informed me. My country of origin is North America.

A long way but one day I will go there. The largest population of raccoons outside America lives in Kassel,

which is in Germany. It's getting closer. Hase, she is a guest, showed me that I climb trees

and what I eat.

Fruits, eggs and nuts that I like. Fish, crayfish and seafood i like also. Especially Gambas al ajillo. But invertebrates such as worms, snails and beetles? Brrr, the only invertebrates that I like is the gummy bear.
Enough for now, I'll see you later

Posted Jan 20, 2013, 6:47 pm
Hi all,
Since Hase and Helga know that I want to be a Toyvoyager, I have to listen to some. I am too spoiled and untrained. Therefore, they try to make me fit. Helga torments me with push-ups

and other things.

Hase chases me up trees.

I'm lucky if I get out of here. And that will be very soon - I'm traveling to Barcelona. I'm so happy. Such a wonderful city and paella and gambas. Oooh, I can hardly believe it.

In seventh heaven
Rocky Raccoon

Posted Jan 23, 2013, 2:26 pm
Yesterday we had another farewell party. HelgaHH will travel back home, and I will starts my first journey. Mum baked a cake and took a group photo.

As long as one can show us yet, she said. Then we ate cake and potato chips and crackers.

We drank one or another glass of wine.

Late at night we came upon a sentimental mood. Hase sang with fervor sad songs

until mum woke up and reminded us that even more people live in this house who want to sleep now. We had a last drink and went to bed.
This morning it was time. I said goodbye to my friends with a group hug

and packed my things.

A special hug for Helga.

Maybe I'll see you again soon.  Mum cuddled me and wished me a safe journey. Then I climbed into my envelope.

My big adventure begins.
I hope we meet again.
Rocky Raccoon

Posted Mar 30, 2013, 7:33 pm
Hi mom!
Finally I arrived at Barcelona, Spain and I’m really happy.
When my envelope was opened, I see some Toy Voyagers waiting for me :) Zero is the ghost dog and the host here, the elephant is Doña Felisa and the little bear is Betty Bear.
R – Hi all, I’m Rocky Raccoon, from Switzerland.

I’ve showed them the presents I took with me.

We took a group photo…

… and Zero add me on his guestbook.

Oh, mom, I think I will have wonderful friends here.
Although I miss you a bit (well, a lot, but I’m a strong raccoon), don’t worry about me because I’m fine.
Lots of kisses and hugs.
Rocky Raccoon.

Posted Mar 30, 2013, 8:10 pm
Hi mom!!!
Today another Toy Voyager arrived so now I’m not the beginner… And this is a BIG Toy Voyager!!!! We all together had to open the box; it seems it’s near to explode!!! But I think I was able to open it alone after my training at home, but, oh, well…
Z,D,B,R – One… two… three!!!!

M – Yeeeeaaaahhhh!!!!!!
Z,D,B,R – Wooooooo!!!!!!!

This is Miggy, a big pig Toy Voyager. It seems to be a nice guy.

We give him a warm welcome and he was added on the guestbook :)

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Mar 30, 2013, 8:33 pm
Hi mom!
Today is “Dijous Gras”, the first day of Carnival festivities, and here in Catalonia is so typical to eat “butifarra d’ou” (egg sausage) and “coca de llardons” (crackling pancake). Here we are eating this!!!

It was delicious!!

Posted Mar 30, 2013, 9:19 pm
Wow!!!! :D
Today we went to a Postcrossing meeting!!!! But it was a special Postcrossing meeting because there we met Ana and Paulo, the bosses of Postcrossing web!!!! It was a pleasure to meet them and take some drinks with them and some more fantastic people!!!!

We had a wonderful afternoon with a lot of postcards and laughs!
I’m a very lucky Toy Voyager!

Posted Apr 3, 2013, 11:36 pm
Hi mom!!!!
Today another Toy Voyager has arrived at home!!!! We opened the envelope and wait about who was inside…

Suddenly, a little monkey appeared!!!

?- Hi!! My name’s Suny!!! I’m from Germany!!!

She brought some candies and a lovely postcard and we took a group photo :)

And then, Zero add her on his guestbook ^^

Welcome Suny!!!!

Posted Apr 4, 2013, 12:03 am
Hi mom!
Today is the last day of Carnival festivities and here in Catalonia this day is called “enterrament de la sardina” (burial of the sardine). About why is called this way, there are a hypothesis, among others. First of all, to bury something is a way to forget it, to take leave of it… And the hypothesis is that the back-bone of the pigs was known as “sardine” and it was buried at the end of Carnival to start the Lent.
To celebrate it, we have eaten a sardine made of bread with chocolate. It was delicious!!!!

Posted Apr 4, 2013, 12:07 pm
Good morning mom.
It’s snowing. I don’t know why all are so nervous. Maybe because it’s sooooo strange, in Barcelona. As you can see, here it’s only raining, but, can you see the mountain behind me? I’m lucky that it’s only snowing in the mountains…

Posted Apr 7, 2013, 1:30 pm
Hi mom!!
Today we went out for a walk and we went to the shopping center “La Maquinista”. “La Maquinista” is situated where the metallurgic fabric “La Maquinista Terrestre i Marítima” was in the past. Here you can see us taking a rest in front of the little park of “La Maquinista”.

This is the large pond, situated in the middle of the park, named Narcís Monturiol (a Catalonian engineer, who invented the first crew submarine). It was built in order to take advantage of the two nearby water sources and it’s used to irrigate the park. Inside the pond you can see the large antique wheel that reminds us of the industrial past of the land. And the building near the pond is “Museo de La Maquinista y Macosa”, a museum which contains historical documents, plans, photographs, models and historical objects from the old factory.

The shopping center!!!!

After visit some shops, we take a rest in a lounge terrace.

Can you see the big clock on the floor??? There was a projector which projected the small hands of the clock to show the hour, but it’s out of order :(

In the first floor there are the restaurants, near another lounge terrace.

It seems like a jungle!!!

Before come back home, we met Tom and Jerry, who drove us in their sidecar :D

We had a fun afternoon!

Posted Apr 7, 2013, 5:54 pm
Hello mom!!
We spent the weekend at hostdad home, so we’re in the train to Sants, the central train station.

In Sants we took another train to Gavà. The views aren’t so nice, just buildings, roads or industrial parks…

Finally we were in Gavà!! This is the train station.

We did a bit of sightseeing while we went to hostdad home. This is the church.

And in this little square there’s a grower with some asparagus.

We spent the afternoon at home and then we went to have supper at hamburger, in the shopping center.

Suny found a little palm tree and she wanted to climb it, just for training, because she wants a bigger one! We waited for her :)

Then we went to the hamburger and shared a big hamburger with fries. Good appetite!!

Posted Apr 7, 2013, 6:57 pm
Today we stayed at hostdad home playing games. We joined with the other guys who live here, Koala, Pitufina, Beaker, Cálico and Super Coco. Zero introduced us and we took a group photo :)

First we played alone…

… And after, we played two by two to Kinect, Michael Jackson experience. They hadn’t a Beatles game :( I played with Beaker and we had a lot of fun!

Posted Apr 14, 2013, 2:28 pm
Hi mom!
Today we went out for a walk and we found some interesting places during our walk.
This is “Plaça Jardins d’Elx”, where a Lady of Elche’s bust is situated.

And in the same square there’s “Parroquia de Crist Rei” a parish started built in 1924.

We continued walking and we found another church, but this is a quite strange church, “Iglèsia de Sant Joan Bosco”, inaugurated in 1974. When hostmom was a child, she thought it was a very big slide and she always wanted to slide for it. Poor hostmom!!! :D

In “Carrer Aragó” (Aragon Street), we found a sculpture dedicated to article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Later, we saw “La Farinera del Clot”, a cultural center situated in an old flour fabric in 1852.

And finally, we arrived to “Les Glòries” where we saw “Torre Agbar”, a tower which is the see of the water company of Barcelona (AGBAR = AGuas de BARcelona). At night it’s illuminated by thousands of colored lights.

It has been an interesting walk!

Posted Apr 16, 2013, 11:12 am
Hi mom.
Today we say goodbye to Doña Felisa and Betty Bear :(

Give a big warm hug to Doña Felisa

And another one to Betty Bear

We take a last group photo

Zero write their check out on his guestbook

And say the last “goodbye”…

I will miss them a lot :(

Posted May 15, 2013, 6:13 pm
Hello Mommy,

after a long journey I finally arrived in Delligsen, the rest of the trip

Günther has accompanied me.

Brunhilde has kindly carried my

luggage. :rolleyes:

Dr. Kröbner and the rest of the TV gang have welcomed me very

warmly, even though they were very busy. Mom, I think we travel

soon, here are lots of guide books Norway. B)

But before the trip starts, I need to rest a little ... ;).

I send you  a big hug ...

your little raccoon


Posted May 24, 2013, 8:08 pm
Hi mom!
Today is “Sant Jordi” (Saint George) and here in Catalonia is celebrated as lovers’ day and as books and roses day. It’s very typical to present a book to men and roses to women. And it’s so typical too to find a lot of little shops in the streets selling books and roses.
Here you can see me in front of one of these shops near home:

We have bought a book for hostdad about Barcelona and a rose for mom

And as surprise, we have eat a “Sant Jordi”’s cake, it’s delicious!!!

Feliç Sant Jordi!!!

Posted May 24, 2013, 8:37 pm
Hi Mum ,

Yesterday evening we started our holydaytrip northwards…  we

started at 23h and Hostmum/dad drove throught the night so that

we awake in Denmark, just before we crossed a gigantic building:

The Store Baelt Bridge. 18km long . The Roadlevel ist 65m height

above sea level and the Pylons for the suspension bridge are with

254m the highest points of Denmark. ;)

After we had solid ground under our wheels we continued our way

toward Malmö/Sweden  In Koge we left the motorway to follow the

seaside Highway to Kopenhagen.

And  we learned something about a special kind of  junction:

Rotary Trafic. And one more Rotary traffic. … and an other one…..


we left this horrible road and enterd the motorway again.

Suddenly it went dark: The motorway disapeared into a tunnel.  B)

When we see the sun again there was no land behind us, we

drove the next bridge, the Oeresund Bridge: not so big as the last

but a length of 12 km, a roadlevel of 54m and Pylons of 206m are

also very impressive!!!. The next solid ground was Sweden.

We passed Malmö where the Eurovision Song Contest  will be start

this Evening and continued our trip toward Kullaberg :rolleyes:

Later we continued our journey northward via Gothenburg and

Tollhättan to Vänern Lake.

We went on a rock at the coast and enjoyed the sundown when

we heard a quite scraping and little “tröööööt”s….

We looked prying round and took notice of a little blue elefant!!  A

BLUE ELEFANT????? We are not boozed or on an trip, …..pinched me

if  I am awake :rolleyes:

The little blue elefant came closer and and introduced himself as

Napoleon. He has lost his wind from hurry up the last time to met

us, but we were so fast riders, that it was nearly impossible for him

to close up till tonight

more soon..

your little raccoon



Posted May 28, 2013, 1:43 pm
Hello  mum,

Next day we visit a masterpiece of engineering: ;) A part of the

Dalslandcanal in  Haverud/Sweden. Over 100 years ago they build a

couple of  canal lock and a brigde for the canal over some water

rapids. And at the same place they build a railway bridge and a

highway bridge…. great….

After gazeing  these constructions we

continued our way northward, crossed the norwegian border and

looked out to a campside for the night.

After a great breakfast we left the campground on norwegian roads

northward. Kilometers for kilometers we followed  rivervalleys uphill,

crossed bridges with water rapids and suddenly we saw snow!!! In

the middle of May! Crazy. We drove up and down, more up as down,

stoped at nice lookout points at Rondane National Park, passed wide

fjell-areas and closely canyons.

At a break between a huge Waterfall and a Water rapid,

I had the idea to take out the Gummischnulli to went

riverrafting. We were fascinated from this adventure but hostmum ( Andrea)

stopped us because we had no life jackets in case of  disaster.  :(

Deeply disapointed we enter the car again and continued our way northward.

Next stop was Kristiansund. There we looked out for a place for the

night and enjoyed the midnightsun on the atlantic ocean(sorry not

realy, because she

dipped unter the horizon for a few hours, but the night was

constantly bright) B)

more soon

a big hug for you mummy

your little raccoon


Posted May 30, 2013, 5:12 pm
hello mum,

now we continued our Holiday-tour  by drove the new build Atlantic-

Highway who followed the atlanticcoast from Kristiansund westward

from island to island. Great views and crazy bridges..J. Today the

weather wasn´t so fine but we sat dry and  have good windscreen

wipers. ;) 

After passing Molde and sailed with ferrys we passed Andernes

toward the Trollstiegen and Geiranger. Suddenly a boom with the

sign: “ STENGT”. What a pity!!  :mad:

The best we could do, was making pictures in front of a very special

traffic sign and returned til Andernes.

At touristinformation we get the information, the Trollstiegen will

open tomorrow morning. To waste the time, we went to the habour

to look nice boats and made a trip into the viewy Romsdal.

We gaze at some  waterfalls and rapids (Andrea still

forbid the riverrafting) :( and the Trollveggen (Troll wall) the highest

vertical cliff in Europe. At evening we campt on the way toward


Next morning we scaled the road with lots of switchback to a level of

over 1000m above sea level. We followed the smal road covered by

clouds and suddenly we came to a canyon and looked down on an

other Fjord: Geiranger we stoped to take pictures (the lookouts from

the car is much more comfortable, warm and dry) and followed the

road with countless switchbacks  to the bottom of the fjord.

After short stop at touristinfo by reason fo closed roads we

continued our way to Sognefjord. But at first we had to cross the

sognefjell, the highest montain pass in Norway. At 1000m above

sealevel the temperature fell unter 0° and it start snowing.  :thinking:We

made a break and took pictuers with 10cm fresh-fallen snow… crazy

We continued our way by mass of snow and a few

kilometer later we are back on sealevel.

We passed an other ferry,

drove into a tunnel, into a rotary traffic into an other tunnel…… but

this tunnel would not end!!!! Suddenly, in the tunnel, the light turns

blue!!  We entered a big hall with a parkingplace, here in the

underground. Than it went dark and we are back in the tube again. 

Lots of kilometer later the same situation: Light turns blue, big hall,

tube again…. And the same will followed a third time. After near

20min. driving underground we saw a light at the end of this

spectaculary building and it realy was daylight. We are back on the

surface again. This was the longest highwaytunnel of the world:

24509 m long.

by the way..Andrea has claustrophobia.....she could not took a nice

picture in the tunnel , only this blurry one

After this adventure we climbed up the next smal road to stay for

the night at an other lookout point far over Aurland.
thats all for today

kisses from



Posted May 31, 2013, 6:05 am
Hello mummy,

we woke up in the early morning and the sun let passing her first

beams through the clouds. We looked outside and had marvellous

glimpse to the Aurlandfjord: The peaks where covered with snow

and on the water a cruise liner passing by. Suitable for postcards.

After breakfast we started to the next stop, Flam, from where the

worldenmost steeply standard gauge railway starts their destination

to Myrdal (The Oslo-Bergen railwy). But the train was crowded with

passengers of the cruise liner, we saw this morning. :thinking:

So we changed

our plan and drove straight toward our summer cottage at

Hardangerfjord. In the afternoon we reached this lovely place and

appreciated it with a collective Boaaaah for the great view. :D

hugs from your


Posted Jun 6, 2013, 11:17 am
Hello mummy,

today we made a trip by ferry and bus to Bergen, the second biggest

town of Norway. By wonderfull sunshineweather we went sloppy

throught the city and visited the World Cultural Heritage Brygge,

the habour

Edward Grieg

and the nice old township aside of the touristcrowds :D

Aura has met a relative, a really big beetle  ;)

more soon from your little Raccoon


Posted Jun 6, 2013, 12:00 pm
Hello mummy,

today: lazzing at a sunny afternoon.. B) ;)

your deep relaxed  ;)


Posted Jun 8, 2013, 10:21 pm
Hi mom!!!
Today we went to Viladrau!!! A little village very known for its mineral water and because a very famous brigand lived there: Serrallonga. It is situated beneath the massifs of the Guilleries and the Montseny, that’s the reason we saw so many green around us.

We arrived at the hotel, “Hostal La Glòria”.

And then, after leave all the bags and other things in our room, we went out for a walk. We asked about some routes and the people of the hotel gave us a map with a route named “El camí dels ponts perduts” (The lost bridges route) and who got lost were us! It was very funny :D And we discovered some beautiful places.
First, we found “La Font dels Enamorats”, (Lover’s fountain).

And soon, we found “La font de l’Oreneta” (Swallow’s fountain).

In our way, we found “La Riera Major”. This is one of its beautiful little waterfalls:

…And some meters later…

Then we arrived at “Mas els Molins”, an enormous house with a sun clock (although it’s a bit difficult to see the sun clock…)

And near there, in a path beside a field, we met catalan donkeys!!! They’re so beautiful, friendly and lovely!!!

We continued our walk and saw a big old tree.

Then, was when we got lost… We were a bit busy trying to find the way back to hotel… And we got it! We arrived at Viladrau again, (well, we were in Viladrau, I mean at the village). And we saw the city council…

… and “Capella de la Pietat”. It’s a chapel dated on 1603 and presided by Mare de Déu dels Dolors. At right of the photo, you can see Sant Domènech Savio, the youngest no martyr saint of the Catholic Church who wears jacket and bowtie. It’s curious…

Ufff!!! Finally we arrived at the hotel, we were so tired!!!! But it was a wonderful day :) Good night!!!

Posted Jun 8, 2013, 10:57 pm
Hi mom.
Today I continue my travel, so all guys have said me the last goodbye.

They gave me a very big and warm hug…

And as usual, Zero wrote my check out on his guestbook

Bye, bye people!!! Hope to see you soon!!!

Posted Jun 14, 2013, 5:13 pm
Hello my mummy,

today I made a trip to the 3th largest glacier of the country. The


Normally glaciers are surrounded by cold mass of air, so he

took his head in the clouds, what a pity...  :mad:

So we took pictures at the

fjell area below the top :D

Hello, is anybody there ? ;)

On the way back I saw this amazing waterfall. :D sorry I`m blurry :rolleyes:

hugs and kisses




Posted Jun 21, 2013, 9:53 am
Hello my mummy,

Today: Lazzing at a sunny afternoon again. B) ;)


Posted Jun 21, 2013, 10:46 am
Hello my mummy,

Time to explore the surrounding area of the summer cottage.

Hostdad found an (old) topografic map with a hiking trail. With gusto

we followed the sign of the maps, but as longer the walk so obscure

was the trail and it splitted into lots of dirttrack, and they all ends in

the moor with wet and swampy underground...Andrea was not amused  ;)

typical norwegian companion animals  ;)

nice little cottages

Relatives of Squab  ;)

After a short discussion with yummy cokkies, we decidet to turn back.

I think we are watching  ;)

This was a great luck because by break at a creek with wonderfull

clear water we took a refreshment und suddenly there stood an

other blue elefant……. he looked like Napoleon and introduced

himself as James...Napoleon invited him for a beer at our summer house ;)

kisses from


Posted Jun 28, 2013, 2:55 pm
Hello mummy,

Last night at our summer cottage... :rolleyes:

we have enjoyed the last time the wonderful view and talked about

our time in Norway


Rocky Raccoon

Posted Jun 28, 2013, 3:51 pm
Today we started homebound.

At first we had to cross seven brigdes, some tunnels and ferrys.

Our next stop for today should be the rock Preikestolen, a Plateau

600m straight above Lysefjord

to get there required a 2 ½ hour mountian hike through a typical

norwegian Fjell-Landscape. On the verge of the rock unfortunately

Hostmum hurts by climbing a crag  :o

and we had to turn back. What a pity. :(

We continued our journey southward and crossed curious

landscapes... :rolleyes:

next bridge  ;)

Huch, rustic tunnel….

last bridge  ;)

the last night in Norway



Posted Jul 4, 2013, 11:51 am
Hello my mummy ,

Last day in norway…  and we visit the southernmost point of  Norway. The Lighthouse Lindesnes.

After enjoing a summerday we drove to Kristiansand Ferry terminal

and enter the speed ferry to Hirtshals / Denmark

Aura discovered her own perfume at the duty free shop  ;)



Posted Jul 4, 2013, 11:59 am
Hello again,

in Lökken we made a stop at  the huge sandbeach to gaze to the sundown.

What a wonderfull ending of this spektacular Holiday… whhoouuu

kisses from



Posted Jul 4, 2013, 1:36 pm
Hi Mummy,

today I read an article in the paper .... pfffffff .... humans.. :mad:

Then I made a really short trip to Kassel

there I met Sunil, a friendly raccoon lady, she invited me to visit her

again in Kassel  :rolleyes:...ok.... ;)



Posted Jul 4, 2013, 1:44 pm
Hello mum,

at the weekend we made ​​a trip to Bavaria, where we have met many other Tvs.

I've looked at Lichtenfels, a lovely little town with many large baskets. ;)

Lichtenfels is a town in Bavaria, Germany, capital of the district of Lichtenfels. It is situated on the upper course of the river Main (pronounced like the English word "mine"), approx. 15 km southeast of Coburg, and 30 km northeast of Bamberg, in an area called Gottesgarten am Obermain (God's garden on the upper River Main

Lichtenfels is the basket-making capital of Germany and has the only college which still teaches the old craft skills. Each year at the end of September the Korbmarkt (basket market) is held when the town is filled with stalls selling baskets from many countries and one can watch many craftspeople at work. On the Market Place in front of the Town Hall you can see the World's largest gift basket.

next stop...Kronach

Kronach is a town in Oberfranken, Bavaria, Germany, located in the Frankenwald area. It is the capital of the district Kronach.
It is the birthtown of Lucas Cranach the Elder and Maximilian von Welsch, as well as Johann Kaspar Zeuss and Josef Stangl. The town is equipped with a nearly complete city-wall and Germany's biggest medieval fortress (Festung Rosenberg).



Posted Jul 4, 2013, 2:15 pm
Hello again,

In Lichtenfels, Yosemite has baked a cake and we took the chance to

celebrate the birthday of Squab and my farewell with 23 TVs.... :D

I hope I counted correctly  ;)

Wavy Gravy, Squab, Mr.Lemony, Lina

Napoleon, 3*Euro, Joesy, Mr.Casanova, Fipsy

Tiffy, Erol, Kikuchan, Bzzzzz

Lady Katherine, Dr.Kröbner, Scruffy, Hùlì hùtù

Aura, Bubele, Günther, *coco*, Rocky  ;)

my journey continues to the north.

goodbye my dear friends,bye, bye.....hostmum and hostdad


Posted Jul 10, 2013, 8:21 pm
Hello Mum,

I arrived in Sülfeld and Dicker Kumpel gave me a warm welcome.

Then he introduced me to the others here.

After travelling in an envelope I wanted to see flowers again. There are a lot in the garden.

I was not sure which flower I love most. So I sat here and enjoyed the sunshine.

I think that this flower is beautiful...

... or this?

Maybe all flowers are beautiful - I will have a nice time here.


Posted Jul 16, 2013, 9:04 pm
Hello Mum,

I went to a small town called Bad Oldesloe. Behind me you can see the town hall.

This is another beautiful house on the market place.

Look - a water wheel.

This was a nicer view.

There are many nice old houses here.

And I liked the church.

I went inside.

What a beautiful organ!

A small river flows through the city.

Oups – well maybe it is more important to zoom on me than on the house.

I found wonderful flowers next to it.

On our way back to the city we crossed the river again.


Posted Jul 20, 2013, 3:55 pm
Hello Mum,

We took a trip by bike to this nice place today. It was a group of big boulders.

This was a very big granite.

We all relaxed on one of the boulders in the sunshine.

Many years ago trains used this way – I saw photos from the Past.


Posted Jul 21, 2013, 8:01 pm
Hello Mum,

Today I played in the garden. There were many beautiful flowers.

And I love Nessie, the funny monster with her fountain.

Then I talked to this funny guy.

Look – a beautiful red dahlia.

And these yellow flowers were so beautiful, too.

We sat together and relaxed on Dicker Kumpel’s swing.

It is such a beautiful place!


Posted Jul 23, 2013, 1:47 pm
Hello Mum,

Today some TVs came and visited us.

It was so nice to see them!

Then we had some delicious cakes. Can you see how hot it was? The chocolate melted.

We ate a lot – it was yummy!

Then Dicker Kumpel got a present by Helmut. Delicious drinks.

We spent the afternoon relaxing in the sunshine and of course we talked a lot!

Then it was time to say goodbye to our friends. Cuddling is great – so we had a big cuddle.

In the evening it was time for the drinks!

We all got a bottle.

We would have loved to have a party with our friends, who left today, so we decided to ‘invite’ them to our party.

I chose Mefito, because he had the same colors as I have.

It was a wonderful evening!


Posted Aug 3, 2013, 12:02 pm
Hello Mum, 

It is summer in Germany at the moment – and a really hot summer. I had a look at the temperature – more than 30 degrees Celsius.

We asked RikeH what to do – and she had a great idea. We played with water bombs.

I throw my orange one on Sean, and he throw his red one onto me.

I waited…

Then it came.

And jumped away…

Then the next try!

It seemed to be a strong balloon. The third try:

Wow – I got wet.

Sean got wet, too.

It was so much fun – and we wanted more. So we asked our humans to throw the water bombs.

There were two.

But one jumped away.

Look – the next one was great – RikeH took the right moment for the photo.

It was so much water – Sean felt backwards.

More fun!

It was a great afternoon!

Posted Aug 10, 2013, 2:46 pm
Hello Mum,

Today I went to a town near to Sülfeld – it is called Bad Segeberg. It has a wonderful church.

This is the market place.

During the summer time they play Winnetou in the open air theatre. All over the city you find different stakes.

On this one was a big bird.

And this stake was very colorful.

Later I went to the Lake of Segeberg – can you see the Apache on the photo.

The lake was really beautiful! We thought about going around it, but then we had to go home and wait for the Telekom-man who wanted to repair our internet.

Well Mum, the man from the Telekom didn't come. And we still have a lot of problems with the internet, that's why we update really late.


Posted Aug 17, 2013, 4:07 pm
Hello Mum,

Many greetings from Bremerhaven. We decided to go there, because Dicker Kumpel promised a big surprise for Sean here.

But it will be tomorrow, today we explored the city. There were two really beautiful buildings.

On the other side I saw the water from the river Weser.

You can see that we are close to the Sea.

There were some beautiful ships.

Many emigrants started their travels here – this monument is a memory for these people.

We had to stop at this watergate, because a ship wanted to go through it.

Behind me you can see the little harbor in the middle of the city.

And these are the views out of our room.


Posted Aug 19, 2013, 8:00 pm
Hello Mum,

Today we went to the Zoo of Bremerhaven.

I started with the ice bears. This one was a little tired at the beginning.

His friend was not so tired.

Then we came to the important part of the Zoo for Sean. I met two friendly penguins.

Look – I saw funny feet. Who will this be?

The feet of these birds.

Later I met another tired animal – maybe the penguins were the only one – next to the birds – who didn't sleep.

LOOK – Dicker Kumpel had a surprise for me, too. Some raccoons are living here.

I talked with them, but they were too fast for a good photo. Can you see him?

These are the footprints of us raccoons.

Look – there he jumped.

It was really interesting, but we had to move on.

I saw a seal in the water.

This was my last view over the Zoo – and I saw the two ice bears together.

It was a nice day in the Zoo.
Rocky Raccoon

Posted Aug 19, 2013, 8:20 pm
Hello Mum,

We went to Hamburg. This was the old part of the port, but now they built many new houses here.

This is the Elbphilharmonie. It is a new building, too – and it gets more and more expensive.

We decided to take a short trip on a boat.

It is great to see the ships and the port from the Elbe River.

This is a really old sailing ship.

Well – maybe I will sail the seven seas in the future?

This building is the ‘alter Elbtunnel’ - a building where you can reach a tunnel under the Elbe River.

We decided not to walk under the Elbe, because it was a hot day.

Here I learnt a lot about the Elbtunnel.


Posted Aug 20, 2013, 2:17 pm
Hello Mum,

It was a wonderful day today. I visited the Beatles Place in Hamburg – one of my life missions.

Here you can see the Beatles. The four famous ones  -  and a little far away a fifth member – of course you know, who he was, Mum.

The Beatles Place is in a – well let me call it – not so nice part of Hamburg – that’s why we saw a lot of police cars there.

You can see the surrounding – RikeH told us not to have a closer look in this street.

But back to the Beatles – maybe I am a member of the Beatles now?

Of course I visited the fifth member, too.

Maybe I should go into this street without asking RikeH?

Here you can see the whole place – it is round like a record.

It was great to see the Beatles Place in Hamburg.

Then we continued our walk and visited a park called Planten un Blomen (plants and flowers).

I liked this funny fountain.

And they had wonderful flowers.

We went into the tropical house and saw other beautiful plants.

I learnt that this plant is called Mother-in-Law’s chair. Can you imagine why?

It was a wonderful day in Hamburg, again.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Aug 24, 2013, 11:10 am
Hello Mum,

RikeH just gave me your greetings - and I want to send some greetings back.

I have a great time here, hopefully you have a nice time without me, too.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Sep 1, 2013, 7:18 pm
Hello Mum,

We are on the Amrum Island now. It is a beautiful Island in the North Sea. Today we took a walk.

It seems to be a nice place.

We walked along this wooden path.

And I saw this beautiful lake in the middle of the Dunes.

Then we climbed up a Dune and saw the lighthouse far away.

This is the view to the other side.

Here you see the smaller Dunes – maybe they will be high when I come back in 10 years?

It is a very big beach.

Many birds flew around there.

Mum, I have the strange feeling that the weather looks bad on the photos, but we didn’t have the feeling of bad weather.


Posted Sep 6, 2013, 12:27 pm
Hello Mum, 

Today was an important day…but not for us ToyVoyagers. Dicker Kumpel’s Mum  RikeH married her finance on the lighthouse of Amrum today. We TVs were not with them, but we waited at home.

There were only some gifts, because they decided to celebrate their wedding only as a couple.

But someone wrote a huge card! Who was it? Well – how amazing! The ones of you who love Darts will definitely know this man!

Then we looked into a small nice book with lovely poems about love and marriage.

We all wanted to get a piece of the wedding cake!

I liked the flowers!

Later another gift arrived – it was from a very good friend of RikeH. We opened it and found this lovely pair of koala bears together with more nice stuff.

But now I want to say: Congratulations RikeH!


Posted Sep 9, 2013, 2:28 pm
Hi Mum,

In the morning I went onto our balcony and saw the ferry.

Fortunately we still have some days here, so we enjoyed the sunshine.

Later that day the weather went much better – and I took a walk to the small beach – and saw another ferry.

Can you see the lighthouse far behind me?

It was great sitting in the Dunes.

And I found some nice shells.


Posted Sep 10, 2013, 9:53 am
Hello Mum,

Today we walked to a small lighthouse called Quermarkenfeuer. We saw nice Erica plants between the Dunes.

Then we saw the Quermarkenfeuer.

Look- there was an aerial photo of it.

I stood next to the small lighthouse and had great views over the Dunes – and to the North Sea.

What a nice small lighthouse!

We had to walk this way!

With a little rest in the erica.

Then we went to a place called Vogelkoje. I learnt a lot about it on this sign.

Ducks were caught in these traps in the Past.

This is a nicer place – insects can live in it.

On our way back we stopped next to this wonderful mill. It looked so great!


Posted Sep 10, 2013, 6:54 pm
Hello Mum,

Sunday was our last day on Amrum – and we relaxed on our beach chair.

We thought that it was boring to sit next to each other, so we all searched our own place.
Can you find me?

Yes, here I am!

Later that day we drove home to Sülfeld. I had two nice days there, but now it was time to say good-bye to Dicker Kumpel. We had a lot of fun together.

All TVs gave me a big hug – now I am on the way to my next host.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Sep 14, 2013, 3:04 pm
Hi Mummy,
I arrived at my new host's home today. There were Kirin, nosyblue and KoalaMimi and of course my host Katja to give me a warn welcome.

On Friday evening Katja usually is meeting a few friends, they are having their knitting evening than. Today there would be only one friend. In the late afternoon we took a walk to meet Katja's friend Kerstin and her dog halfway to her home. She is living in another district of Remscheid, in Luettringhausen.

Within the municipal area of Remscheid there are large woodland areas and valleys, so there is always a way to get to another district by taking a nice walk. So we went out to meet Kerstin.

This quarter is called Steinberg, in the background you can already see large open spaces.

We walked through a large allotment area.

This street is so steep that trucks are not allowed to drive downwards.

In the valley we walked through a lovely housing area. Someone seems to like lighthouses :)

There is an old factory building in the valley. There were many of them like Katja told us. They settled along the creeks since late mddle ages.

These are elderberries. This weekend we will go into the forest to pick a lot of them for cooking jam.

We rested under a tree for a short while, enjoying the sun.

We nearly reached Luettringhausen.

A large flock of sheep was grazing in the valley.

In the meantime we met Katja's friend and her dog. Now we walked a bit around with the dog.

There was a lovely house in the valley, unhabitated at the moment.

At the weekend we will also look for blackberries. There are still lots of ripe fruit waiting to be picked.

Hawthorne would also be great for jam, Katja told us.

We came a long a riding stable with large rural areas around.

The small city in the background is Luettringhausen.

Can you see the hill in the background, with the two towers? This is the city centre of Remscheid, with the water tower and the tower of the city hall.

Corn! Yummy :)

Later we went home, taking Kerstin with us. Than the ladies had a nice evening, knitting anything. Katja promised to knit a tiny sweater for me when it will get cold outside.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Sep 16, 2013, 4:50 pm
Hi Mummy,
hostmum went into the forest today to pick berries with a friend, without taking us with her! When she came back, she brought a large bag and two large plastic cans full of berries with her.

First all the berries had to be sorted and washed. Washing was my job, of course :) There were elderberries, blackberries, hawthorn berries, rosehips and a few sloe fruits.

Elderberries and blackberries were given through a sieve mill to separate the fruits from the seeds.

(Why did I have to wash them when Katja made such a mess later?)

In the meantime empty jars were prepared.

Than the fruit purree was mixed with apple juice and gelling sugar and was cooked to a delicious jam.

Tomoroow we will cook another jam from the other fruits.

Rocky Raccoon


Posted Sep 16, 2013, 4:54 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we cooked more jam, this time we used oranges, rosehips, hawthorn berries and the sloe fruits.

First the seeds of the rosehips had to be removed.

Than all the berries were cooked in a little bit water for about 10 minutes and given through the sieve mill.

A few oranges were filleted and mixed with the berries and gelling sugar.

We also helped Katja to create and print labels for the jars.

After hours of hard work here is the result:

Of course we tried both jams - yummy!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Sep 24, 2013, 8:25 pm
Hi Mummy,

today it is Bundestag elections day. After Katja went to the polls she took us on a walk to the municipal park.

It took us only a few minutes to get there. On our way there we came along those nice dwellings.

Here is a large playground, but no kid in sight.

This is the police headquarter with a small park in front of it.

We went to the municipal park than.

There is a pond in the park. Ducks and abandonded turtles are living here.

In the entrance area you can find the observatory.

This memorial is dedicated to the dead of several wars which took place before WW I. The momorial is placed in a lovely flower garden. There are still flowers blooming, although it is already autumn.

We left the park to reach the historical district Hasten. Here many lovely old houses remained while large parts of the city centre of Remscheid were destroyed in WW II.

Hasten has its own small inner city with several shops, bars and restaurants and also several industrial units, some of them working in historical buildings.

Hasten is surrounded by woodland, in the background there are the outskirts of the neighbour city Wuppertal.

This Patrician villa was built in the late 1790 years. Nowadays a museum is situated in the building.

The German Tool Museum (Deutsches Werkzeugmuseum) is also situated on this estate. Here you can see some of severeal outdoor facilities, the large garden on the museum's estate.

Another calm residental area ...

From here we had to walk for about 20 minutes to get home.

Posted Sep 25, 2013, 8:40 am
Later that afternoon we met a friend to take  a walk along river Wupper. We went to Solingen-Unterburg and than into the forest, close to a filter plant.

Katja showed us a weir.

We had a lot of fun following the river.

We found an ear trumpet which intensifies the sound of water running down the rocks - in rainy months a waterfall! Katja warned me to put my ear into it - maybe I could fall inside!]

There are information boards along the path, showing hiking trails and information about forest residentals and also plants.

Later we left the river bank and went uphill into the forest.

Katja showed us there tinder fungus. Already in ancient times tinder - what is found inside the tinder fungus - was used to light fire.

This is the chairlift to Oberburg, where a famous medieval castle is situated.

Later Katja showed us lovely old houses in Unterburg when we went back to the car. Most of them were built in 18th und 19th century..

... this one even in mid 17th century.

This creek - Eschbach - is mouthing into river Wupper here.

And here is the chairlift once more.

That's all for today.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Sep 25, 2013, 10:06 am
Hi Mummy,
today we went to the neighbour city Wuppertal to meet another ToyVoyager member, Strunki. She is also living in Remscheid.

Wuppertal is situated at the valley of the river Wupper. With about 343.000 inhabitants it is the largest city of the region Bergisches Land. Wuppertal is known for its steep slopes, its woods and parks.

First we walked along the shopping streets.

One of the city’s greatest attractions is the suspended monorail (Schwebebahn), which was established in 1901. The tracks are 8 m above the streets and 12 m above the Wupper River. Here you can see one of 20 stations along the 13,3 km long route. Here you can see one of the stations in the city centre. This station is built in a modern style while others were restored in their original historic appearance.

Inside the station we found a route map.

Soon our train was coming in.

Inside the train it was rather narrow and the train was rocking along the curves :)

We left the train at the station "Landgericht". This station was restored one or two years ago in its original style, looking like a timber-framed house.

Here we met Strunki! One last look out of the station!

Strunki and Katja decided to drive to the Botanical garden. That sounds great! Inside the car we met some toys, accompanying Strunki in the car all the time. Of them them, the little polar bear, was very interested in our stories and we managed to wheedle him to become a ToyVoyager too. He seemed to be a bit shy :)

Soon we reached the Botanical garden. There are greenhouses and a lovely tower in entrance area - Eilse Tower.

The garden dates to 1890 when a botanical school garden was first created on a smaller terrain. Between 1908-1910 it relocated to today's site, the Villa of a textile manufactor named Eller, a former country house which contained a villa (built 1820), orangery, residential and farm buildings. Elise Tower was built in 1838 A.D. as the garden's focal point.

This is the villa.

The villa is decorated with mosaic patterns.

We explored the garden than. We found meadow saffron.

There is a bog garden with carnivorous plants.

Sunflowers ...

Next we visited the kitchen garden with herbs and crop plants like pumpkins.

There were also exotic plants like this banana tree.

These are Angel's trumpets, originally from South America. Angel's trumpets are beautiful flowers, but extremely poisonous.

These are tamarillo with edible fruits, originally from South America also.

There is an insect hotel shaped like Elise Tower.

Wiothin the villa complex there is a permanent exhibition showing cones from all over the world, from the smalles to the largest cones.

We went to one of the greenhouses than. An exhibition showing exotic butterflies and moths.

The greenhouse was secured so no butterfly could escape.

There were "snack bars" everywhere :)

This butterfly was black and brillant blue.

We hoped that a special butterfly would come to this banana plant, but unfortunately it did not.

The Botanical garden is situated on a hill called "Hardt". The Botanical Garden is only a small part of a vast landscape park. We strolled around for a while.

There is a Bismarck monument in the park, one of actually 173 within Germany in honour of the long-serving Prussian minister-president and first German Reichskanzler, Prince Otto von Bismarck - there were even 240 of th em once.

We found this weird piece of art work in the park.

At least it offered a good overview :)

We said good-bye to the park than to visit another attraction.

Katja told us that we would than visit a Lego bridge. Lego? Every child knows what Lego is, but a real Lego bridge in a city? We were really excited. Finally OleOrangescarf was brave enough to visit the bridge with us.

Indeed - a Lego bridge! It seemed to be made with giant Lego bricks.

This bridge is a concrete beam bridge which crosses over the Schwesterstraße. This bridge belongs to a former railway track was repainted as this Lego-Bridge in 2011. It even won a prize!

Good-bye for today!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Oct 3, 2013, 11:25 am
Hi Mummy,
today we met STrunki, OleOrangescarf`s mentor.

It took us a maybe 45 minutes walk to visit her in a district in the South of Remscheid. From here the silhouette of Remscheid is looking completely different, with all those industrial sites.

After showing us around the house we went to visit Eschbach dam (Eschbachtalsperre). Did you know that Eschbach dam was the first dam to be built in Germany for drinking water supply? It was opened in 1891. The lake is enclosed in a beautiful landscape.

Here you can see the rear side of the concrete dam.

First we followed the path which is leading around the lake.

Soon we left the main path to walk uphill into the forest where we found this momorial, a conciliation cross. These memorial crosses where placed in medieval times where an accident or murder happended, the information board is telling about this special incident.

We reached a rural area than with meadows and horses, close to the A1 motorway.

We found rosehip here and also hawthorn. Both Katja and you like to use fruits from local trees and bushes to cook jam.

We found several mushrooms, most impressing was this one.

Later we returned to the main walking path along the lake.

This was a teddy bear tour today :) :)

Later we took some home grown chili pepper with us.

Rocky Raccoon


Posted Oct 3, 2013, 11:36 am
Hi Mummy,
we thought what to do with this load of chili peppers and decided to prepare a hot chili paste. Katja found some garlic, sea salt and olive oil, this should have been enough.

First we removed the cores from the chili husks.

Garlic and husks were minced ...

... and given into the mixer with sea salt and olive oil.


The red paste was filled into tiny jars. Let's see if it good!

Rocky Raccoon


Posted Oct 3, 2013, 11:41 am
Hi Mummy,
we played with the ferrets today. They are cute and curious little furry creatures :)

This is Shiva, the sable ferret. Katja is calling her raccoon because she also looks like a bandit with her fur markings.

These are all of them.

The early white ferret is Brighty and the siam ferret is Zaehnchen. They love their vitamin paste.

They can't get enough of it :)

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Oct 11, 2013, 3:12 pm
Hi Mummy,
today I took part in a very special event: A ToyVoyagers meeting! Hostmum Katja met Strunki and mcdaniels at Strunki's home. There were 17 ToyVoyagers!

There was a welcome sign for each "TV-Family".

I came here with Kirin, Lamikins,Tsukumo,nosyblue, OleOrangescarf and KoalaMimi .

We met Sargent Froggo,*Nick*,UrselHH,Laika,Gozer,Hase,Charlotte,HelmutBluepant,TheWotWots and Elmar.

Strunki prepared a present for every guest :)

Have a look - a neck kerchief, a scented candle, yummy chocolate and a lollipop.

The ladies were starving, so we helped Strunki to finish the prepared lunch - spaghetti with vegetables.

We explored the garden than.

There is even a pond.

Here is the whole flock of ToyVoyagers :D

Finally there was a fantastic party with candy, chocolate and other delicacies,also a yummy liquor, Killepitsch.

Maybe we had too much of this Killepitsch, a liquor delicacy based on herbs. Really weird things happened ... can you see it?

Time to say goodbye!

Rocky Racccccoooooooon


Posted Oct 11, 2013, 4:17 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we went to Winterberg in the Hochsauerland district, about 150 km apart from Remscheid. Winterberg is a famous winter sport resort. First we had to visit a family member in a hospital where we met more plushy visitors :)

We also visited the nearby city centre. Although it was a Sunday most of the shops were open.

Afterwards we to Kappe which is part of the Rothaar mountains. Here you can find the Winterberg bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton track.

They have to work hard on this construction site to have everything finished when the first snow will fall.

You can use this funny thing to intensify the sounds of the forest.

They are already preparing the pistes, they were covered with straw to keep the grass from growing further.

There is also a nature trail on the mountain, sometimes we crossed it.

Does this mean I might meet a real raccoon? Probably not, Katja told me. What a pity!

This is the bobsleigh track.

We even found a bobsleigh!

Goodbye Winterberg!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Oct 19, 2013, 5:21 pm
Hi Mummy,

today we visited Germany's highest railway bridge, Muengsten Bridge.

Katja told me that Germany's highes railway bridge is connecting Remscheid with the neighbour city Solingen. We went there with Strunki and her guests.

First we had to cross river Wupper. In the background you can see an outlook pavilion, Katja told us that we would see it again later.

Soon we reached the bridge.

Muengsten Bridge was built of steel, completed in 1907. It is about 480 m long and 107 m tall. There are extensive repair works going on in the last few years and they are taking place at the moment. The bridge will be closed for several months.

An artist blacksmith has its shop here. You can find funny sculptures placed here.

Coming closer to the bridge ... there is a restaurant which was opened only two or three years ago.

This replication of wupper valley is perfect for us ToyVoyagers :)

Some years ago a leisure park was built under the bridge. You can find lawns for relaxing here, a crazy golf course and playgrounds for the kids. This is river Wupper.

Following the walking path we had to walk uphill for some time.

Due to all the rainfall this week there were mushrooms everywhere, also this beautiful fly agaric.

A whole flock of ToyVoyagers visited Muengsten Bridge today :)

We had to cross river Wupper here.

We found more mushrooms.

Once more the hiking path took us high above the valley.

We reached the outlook pavilion than, the one we have seen when we started our trip. Katja told us that there was a "twin" in Solingen, close to Schloss Burg. They were built around 1900 by a rich former citizen of Remscheid, August Diederichs. That's whey are called "Diederichstempel".

Enjoy this stunning view across the valley!

We all needed a short rest than.

Bye for now
Rocky Raccoon


Posted Oct 23, 2013, 2:02 pm
Hi Mummy,
we visited a fantastic place today - the Bergische Museumsbahnen, a heritage tram museum. It is situated in the neighbour city Wuppertal and is operating its own tram line which was a regular tram line within Wuppertal until 1969.

The museum line begins about 50 m east of the Kohlfurth bridge. Here one of 200 penguins taking part in the Pinguinale, which was taking place in 2006 to celebrate the 125th anniversy of Wuppertal Zoo. 200 penguins were painted by kids and artists. Nowadays you can find then all over the city area. At Kohlfurth bridge a penguin lady, dressed like a porter, is placed.

This is the museum area with the depot and its outdoor facilities.

One of the trams was parked on the track outside the depot.

You can find all kinds of historic rail vehicles here and also a model railway.

We had a look at the depot than. So many trams!

Actually there were no tram journeys for visitors today, but a very nice member of the staff liked the idea of Toyvoyagers so much that we were allowed to enter a tram and join a test run.

This tram is originally from the 1920s years.

This is the driver's cabin.

Inside the tram ...

The original line is winding its way through a woodland area to the district Cronenberg.

We really enjoyed the trip through the forest. The route has a height difference of about 150 metres. Poor Kirin fell from the window sill.

Each trip took about 15 minutes. Back in the museum area we had a look at the coat of arms of Wuppertal. A lion with a double tail is the heraldic animal.

This is the tram line's time schedule.

We went back to the car, but had a last look at river Wupper first.

From here we drove to Cronenberg to take a walk in the Arboretum Burgholz.

An arboretum is a collection of trees, sort of a botanical garden containing living collections of woody plants intended at least partly for scientific study. We went to "Staatsforst Burgholz", a woodland area which is situated in both urban area of Wuppertal and also the urban area of Solingen, but only a small part of it.

When World War II was over, there were nearly all trees felled for rebuilding of destroyed city areas and also as firewood.

Searching for fast-growing forest species trees from foreign counties were planted than in this area to study their growth in local weather conditions. Plants from North America, South America, Asia and Europe were planted.

There are several walking paths through the arboretum, of course we chose the longest of them, about 6 km long, displaying a variety of trees from Europe, America and Asia. At the parking lot we found a map of the arboretum area.

We decided to walk along a path showing trees of Northern America.

This is a coast redwood tree with its characteristic bark.

These are the tiny cones of these western hemlocks.

We reached a part of the forest which was rather dark, the trees were so dense. Giant sequoias!

Our trip ended here and we went back home, enjoyed coffee and waffles there.

Rocky Raccoon


Posted Nov 3, 2013, 12:59 pm
Hi Mummy,
we took a short walk in the city centre today. Because Katja's work place is close to the city hall we had a look at this impressing building first. It was originally built in early 20th century but was n early destroyed in WW II. It was rebuilt in a more modern style afterwards with a tower which is about 48 m tall.

The heraldic animal of Remscheid is a lion, it can be found on a pillar in front of the city hall.

This is still the city hall ...

Another characteristic building is the water tower at the rear side of the city hall. You can see these two towers from a lot of places around.

In WW II large parts of the city centre were destroyed, nearly every house between the city hall and the central statioin. But when you walk to the opposite direction, towards the municipal park, you can find lots of beautiful old houses.

Bye for now
Rocky Raccoon

Posted Nov 3, 2013, 1:19 pm
Hi Mummy,
we met a friend today to take a walk around the district Hasten. Hasten is one of the historic districts with lots of beautiful old houses.

We took a path through an allotment area.

Here we found more historic houses, mostly built close together.

A cat was relaxing here.

Deep in the valley we found this house.

We went into the forest than and walked along the Morsbach, the creek which is running through the valley.

Following the valley we walked along this flock of sheep ...

... and horses, cows and geese on this meadow.

This trunk was the perfect place for resting.

There was a tiny house hidden in the valley, an historic wall integrated into the building.

There are also some old industrial sites with distributing grounds.

Later, when were were back in the forest, we found a soft moss bed.

Katja showed us more lovely old houses ...

We also walked along the museum which I already showed you before.

Everyone was tired now and we hurried home.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Nov 3, 2013, 3:46 pm
Hi Mummy,
had had a fantastic Halloween party in the evening. We invited Strunki and all her guests to visit us.

Our hosts prepared a lot of squirmy food for us. But first I have to show you my frightening costume.

I am sure that the other TVs will be frightened to death :D :D :D

We were all looking really scary :), especially Frederik.

Soon our guests arrived.

We were nearly starving, so first we entered the buffet. There were ghosts, a fearsome head with an open brain, looking like fruit salad, dentures with horrible carnassials, sore eyeballs in sanies ...

green glib with dead vampires ...

... yummy but poisonous fly agaric ...

Here is a group photograph of all those ghosts and mummies :)

What a party!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Nov 15, 2013, 5:43 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we visited a medieval castle in the neighbour City Solingen, Schloss Burg, It is situated high upon a hill above the River Wupper.

This is the view from the street. This beautiful house in the foreground was built in 17th century.

We went into the courtyard and found a lovely half-timbered part of the castle.

Schloss Burg was built in 1133 by Count Adolf I von Berg on a hill above the river Wupper. That's why this region is called "Bergisches Land". Many people believe that it's name refers to the landscape with hills and valleys.

About a hundred years later it was enlarged by Count Engelberg II von Berg. This is the guy on the horse in the courtyard.

In Thirty Years War (17th century) large parts of the castle were destroyed. It was rebuilt then, but it was used for industrial purposes for many years. In the end of the 19th century they began to rebuild it as it appears today.

In the castle courtyard you can find souvenir shops and shops whose owners are doing an "old" handcraft, for example handmade brushes, brooms, soap, lovely yarns and wooden knitting needles, toys like swords and helmets and much more.

The round tower was the powder tower, it was restored about four or five years ago.

You can overlook the valley of the river Wupper from this high point.

I am a fakir-raccoon :D

We walked into the forest than. Here we found the "twin" of the outlook pavilion close to Muengsten Bridge.

Katja showed us another interesting place - the former fortified tower of Schloss Burg. These towers were usually built from 16th century when firearms were used. Nowadays this tower contains a memorial place for those people which were banished from the former German Eastern counties.

From here you can see the castle almost completely.

Oh dear, it was already getting dark.

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Nov 25, 2013, 6:10 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we decided to take a walk at Wupper dam ( Wupper-Talsperre ). This dam is extremely large, you can not circle it when you just want to take a walk. Our track led us through a forest first.

Finally we reached the lake.

We rested for a while, sitting on those colored leaves.

We went down to the lakefront to have a closer look.

Later we found an information board with a map.

We left the lake area than to walk back to the car, through a rural area this time.

If only the weather had been better!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Nov 25, 2013, 6:15 pm
Hi Mummy,
I'm sorry that I am such a lazy raccoon at the moment. Nothing thrilling is going on here, we are often having bad weather and it is already dark in the late afternoon. But today we took at least a short walk to visit Katja's Mum in hospital. It took us only about 40 minutes to get there.

Here at this large intersection the local court is situated.

From here we went  to the Route of Tools (Trasse des Werkzeugs), a former track for freight  trains which was rebuilt to a lane for pedestrians and cyclists. It is about 4,5 m long, connecting the central station with the district Hasten. You can find interesting  buidings and artwork along this lane.

Here you can see the former slaughterhouse, now under monument protection. Nowadays offices are situated here.

Here is a place for resting and relaxing.

Local companies, mostly tool producing companies, sponsored this lane. Here and at some other places you can find large signs with their company logos.

We also found one of those pieces of artwork. This one was made of coloured die cutting leftovers.

Can you see us in this coloured mass of metal?

Close to the station we crossed the regular track.

We had to cross a valley than.

We even watched a flock of cranes fly towards the South.

Hopefully we can explore something else this weekend!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Dec 11, 2013, 4:50 pm
Hi Mumy,
today I said good-bye to all my friends here. We wrote a postcard and packed delicious sweets into my envelope. I'm going to Finland now!

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Dec 11, 2013, 5:13 pm

Hello mum!

I arrived to Finland yesterday. After I got out of the envelope, I met Teddy and Gozer. It's great to meet Gozer again and I'm sure it'll be fun to get to know Teddy, too. By the way, they liked the postcards and sweets that I brought from Germany.

Finland gained independece from Russia on 06.12.1917, so today's a holiday to celebrate that. The Independece Day in Finland is usually a quiet day, spent with family and friends. Some people like to go to graveyards to honour those, who died defending the independece, when the Soviet Union tried to take over on Winter War in 1939 - 1940 and again on Continuation War in 1941 - 1944.

The official festivities start with raising of the Finnish flag on Tähtitorninmäki in Helsinki. Of course the flags are raised everywhere in Finland, too. Then there's a religious service in the Helsinki Cathedral, which is also shown on TV. We chose not to watch that.

Later on the day there will be a parade of the Finnish army, which will take place in different towns. This year the parade was held in Mikkeli. Too far away for us to go to watch it on the streets, but we watched a part of it on TV instead.

In the evening there's the president's party. This year was different, because the party was held in Tampere instead of the Presidential Palace in Helsinki. That's because there are renovations going on in the palace. The party is shown on TV, too, so people can watch how all those who are invited shake hands with the president and what they are wearing. The people who got invited are usually veterans of Winter and Continuation Wars, politicians, celebrities such as musicians, actors and artists, other people who have succeeded in their field of work, etc. We watched a part of the party, too.

It's traditional for Finnish people to light two candles on every window of their home. Due to the lack of suitable places near windows, we chose to burn candles on the living room table instead.

After that we watched the 1955 version of Tuntematon sotilas (The Unknown Soldier). It's a Finnish movie based on a novel by Väinö Linna and it tells a story about a company in the Continuation War. Watching that movie is one of the Independence Day traditions, too, it's been shown on TV every year since 2000. The book and movie both are classics that every Finn should read and watch - and why not people from other countries, too.

Best wishes,
Rocky Raccoon


Posted Dec 27, 2013, 2:51 pm


Jinxed went to do some Christmas shopping to the town center. Gozer and I decided to tag along, although it was getting dark and raining a little.

We stopped to watch the Christmas window of Stockmann. It was very nice with some moving animals. There were many children watching the window with their parents, too.

Then we went to Christmas Market that was located at Kauppatori. Kauppatori is a marketplace at the center of Turku.

Greetings, Rocky

Posted Dec 27, 2013, 3:10 pm


Today we went to the cottage to look for a Christmas tree. It was more exciting and fun than just buying a tree from the parking lot of a nearby market. Of course you can't go to any forest and grab a tree that you like, it'd be stealing. Jinxed's parents own a part of the forest around the cottage, so it was fine for us to look for a Christmas tree in there.

It looks like we won't get any snow for Christmas. Temperature is something around +5°C and it rains a lot. Feels like an autumn instead of a winter, which is kinda sad. Luckily the rain stopped while we were driving to Lieto.

After a lot of searching we found a suitable tree before it started to get dark again.

Greetings, Rocky

Posted Dec 27, 2013, 3:20 pm

Hi again!

Today it was time to wrap the Christmas presents. Teddy, Gozer and I helped until we ran out of wrapping paper and jinxed had to go to buy some more.

Best wishes,

Posted Dec 27, 2013, 3:30 pm

Merry Christmas!

In Finland Christmas is celebrated already on Christmas Eve with family and/or friends. The traditional Christmas dinner includes different casseroles, ham, turkey, fish, and different salads. It's tasty and there's usually so much food that you end up eating it at least the whole Christmas.

Santa Claus brings the presents, sometimes in person and sometimes he just leaves them under the Christmas tree.



Posted Jan 22, 2014, 4:44 pm


Today we visited quickly in Turku Cathedral. It's one of the most notable historical buildings in Finland and also one of the best-known sights in Turku.

The Cathedral is the Mother Church of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, the central church of the Archdiocese of Turku and the seat of the Archbishop of Finland.

It was originally built out of wood in the 13th century. The wooden church was replaced by a new church built out of stone at the end of the 13th century. After that the Cathedral has been built, burnt and rebuilt several times in the course of its long history. The latest major damage was caused by the Great Fire in 1827.

Here you can also see the huge Christmas tree in the front of the Cathedral. It's a yearly tradition to look for a huge and beautiful tree that would be worthy to become a Christmas tree for the Cathedral.

Here's the main aisle of the Cathedral. The Musicians of the King's Road - a Baroque Orchestra and Choir - were there practising for their Epiphany concert. The music added nicely to the athmosphere of the Cathedral.

And here's the reason for our quick visit. We wanted to see this Nativity Scene, it's made by an Italian artist and is in the Cathedral only for this Christmas time. Actually we wanted to see it already on Christmas, but didn't find enough time even for a quick visit.

I think this small detail on the floor is very cute and probably easy to walk past without noticing. A cat has left his/her paw prints on the floor tiles a long time ago. I found these paw prints only because Gozer has been here before and told me where to look for them.

One more look towards Aura River and the Cathedral when we were already walking back to the car. I wish I'd've had more time to look around the Cathedral, it seemed to be beautiful and interesting.



Posted Jan 22, 2014, 5:05 pm


Another toyvoyager, Emil arrived here today. We talked a lot, mostly about being a toyvoyager and what we've seen and done on our adventures.

Best wishes,


Posted Jan 22, 2014, 5:33 pm


The weather seemed to be sunny and nice, although somewhat cold. We decided to go out and have a walk in a nearby forest. Teddy was lazy and chose to stay at home. Gozer told us that he had been in the forest earlier, so he could be our guide, if needed.

This spruce was so huge that there wasn't any snow under it. We sat on a rock to enjoy the sunshine.

This is an old forest and it's mostly left as it is, so you can see lots of old and fallen trees there. Here's one of those and you can also see the huge spruce a bit better.

Gozer was watching, when Emil and I climbed on an old oak.

We saw rabbits' tracks here and there, but no rabbits themselves. Maybe we were too scary for them to show up. It looked like they had searched something to eat here.

Look at all this ice. It's quite artistic, isn't it? It was very slippery to sit on that rock, but we managed to get a good enough grip of the icicles.

Here's one of the fallen trees. Looks like it has been lying on the path a long time. We had to climb over the trunk to be able to continue our adventure.

We saw a somewhat funny-looking birch. It seemed to be ideal for building a treehouse. We couldn't resist climbing up.

Despite all the walking and climbing we started to freeze, so we decided it's time to go back to jinxed's home and have some hot juice.



Posted Jan 25, 2014, 3:37 pm

Hi mum!

Today we went for a walk to Linnanpuisto (linna = castle, puisto = park) and the bank of Aurajoki (joki = river). Linnanpuisto is surrounding Turku Castle, so that explains the name of the park.

Turku Castle is another of the most notable historical buildings in Finland and it's also the oldest surviving medieval building in Finland. The castle was founded in the late 13th century and it's located near the mouth of Aurajoki. Originally the castle was built on an island, but the ground has ascended during the centuries so much that the island is fully connected to the mainland.

The castle has been through a lot during it's long history. It's been built, burnt, rebuilt and extended many times. The latest major damage was caused by an incendiary bomb that hit the Medieval keep on 1941, when Soviet Union was air raiding Turku during the Continuation War. After that the castle has been renovated and restored to its 16th century glory. Now the castle is one of the most popular museum in Finland.

That's what we saw, when we jumped out of the bus. The white part of the castle is the Renaissance bailey and behind it you can see the eastern tower of the Medieval keep.

Here's the entrance to the courtyard.

The courtyard, eastern tower and entrance to the Medieval keep.

Here's an old well on the courtyard. Maybe there's still water in it.

There's also a cafe in the Renaissance bailey. Seems that no one wants to sit outside in January, which I can understand. It's too cold.

A view to the courtyard from the entrance tower. Look how thick the walls are.

We wondered where this door leads. It's locked, so we couldn't find out.

Here's the entrance to the castle. We didn't go there this time, because you can't see much of the inside without buying a ticket anyway.

Here's a corner of the inner courtyard.

After seeing the courtyards we wanted to see the castle walls from outside, too. Here you can see the two different parts of the castle.

Here we are in the front of the western tower.

The western side of the castle is probably most commonly seen in photos, postcards, etc. It's also know as the symbol of Turku.

Here's the only round tower of Turku Castle.

We also walked a bit on the bank of Aurajoki. There we saw some museum ships. Here's Suomen Joutsen (Swan of Finland) facing towards the sea.

A nice view of Aurajoki.

Here's another museum ship, Sigyn. She's facing towards the sea, too. It looks like she's been coverd for winter.

This small ferry is called Föri. It transports people across the river for free.



Posted Jan 28, 2014, 9:58 pm


Mum has found a new host for me, so it's time to continue my journey.

It's also time to say goodbye to my friends. Maybe we'll meet again someday, somewhere. You'll never know.

The cat wanted to say goodbye, too.

Gozer, Emil and Teddy gave some chocolates for me, so I won't become too hungry while I travel.

Finally it was time to crawl into my envelope.

Goodbye friends and goodbye Finland. Germany, I'm coming.



Posted Feb 7, 2014, 3:43 pm
Hello Mommy,

I arrived safe in Germany!
When I crawled out of my envelope I thought many Toyvoyagers will welcome me! But there was only Crawfish. :thinking:

She told me I'm late. All the others already left to Berlin. She put a hat on my head (because it's cold outside) and told me that I have to go by train to Berlin on my own. So I did...

Rocky Raccoon

Posted Feb 7, 2014, 4:11 pm
Hey Mommy,

I made it to Berlin on my own!!! And I was in time for some sightseeing with the other guys. :cyclops:

Today we visited the Soviet War Memorial which is a vast war memorial and military cemetery in Berlin's Treptower Park. It was built to the design of the Soviet architect Yakov Belopolsky to commemorate 5,000 of the 80,000 Soviet soldiers who fell in the Battle of Berlin in April–May 1945. It opened four years after World War II on May 8, 1949. The Memorial served as the central war memorial of East Germany.

This is one of 16 stone sarcophagi.

This is a portal consisting of a pair of stylized Soviet flags built of red granite.

The focus of the ensemble is a monument which is a 12-m tall statue of a Soviet soldier with a sword holding a German child, standing over a broken swastika. According to Marshal of the Soviet Union Vasily Chuikov, the Vuchetich statue commemorates the deeds of Sergeant of Guards Nikolai Masalov, who during the final storm on the center of Berlin risked his life under heavy German machine-gun fire to rescue a three-year-old German girl whose mother had apparently disappeared.


Posted Feb 7, 2014, 5:41 pm
Hello Mommy,

we visited the famous Berlin Aquarium which is one of Germany's largest aquariums. The aquarium was built in 1913 as part of the Berlin Zoological Garden complex. Since its opening the Zoo-Aquarium has been ranked among the public aquariums with the world’s greatest biodiversity.
Over 9,000 animals are presented on three storeys. It contains jellyfish, tropical and native fishes, crocodiles, and a broad variety of insects. In addition to its 250 tanks for fish, the aquarium houses a wide variety of amphibians and reptiles including tuataras.
The shark tank presents the blacktip reef shark and sand tiger shark.
With a total capacity of 25,000 litres, twelve basins present different sections through the world of corals. The largest of these basins is the 11-cubic-metre Great Coral Basin with its reproduction lagoon.

We were so excited about all the animals that we nearly forgot to take pictures. But here's one with lots of green frogs! Can you see the 3 behind me? 2 of them are glued to the glass! I can't believe they walk that way. ;)


Posted Feb 7, 2014, 6:13 pm
Hello Mom,

it's time for some sightseeing. First we visited the famous tv tower "Fernsehturm". It was constructed between 1965 and 1969 and with its height of 368 meters, it is the tallest structure in Germany. There is a visitor platform and a revolving restaurant in the middle of the sphere. The tower is part of the World Federation of Great Towers (WFGT).
On the left you can see St. Mary's Church. The exact age of the original church site and structure is not precisely known, but it was first mentioned in German chronicles in 1292. It is presumed to date from earlier in the 13th century. The architecture of the building is now largely composed of comparatively modern restoration work which took place in the late 19th century and in the post-war period. The church was originally a Roman Catholic church, but has been a Lutheran Protestant church since the Protestant Reformation.

This is the Berlin Cathedral which is the colloquial name for the Evangelical Supreme Parish and Collegiate Church in Berlin.
The Berlin Cathedral has never been a cathedral in the actual sense of that term since it has never been the seat of a bishop. It was built in the 15th century.

The Old Museum is one of several internationally renowned museums on Museum Island in Berlin. Since restoration work in 1966, it houses the antique collection of the Berlin State Museums. The museum was built between 1823 and 1830 and was designated an UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999.

The last place we went to was the Brandenburg Gate. It is one of the most well-known landmarks of Berlin and Germany.

Your little

Posted Feb 20, 2014, 11:06 pm
Hey ho!

We used the public transportations today! Berlin has lots of undergrounds, so we used one. And what a surprise, we had the whole train for ourselves!  B)
Opened in 1902, the U-Bahn serves 170 stations spread across ten lines, with a total track length of 151.7 kilometres (94.3 mi), about 80% of which is underground. Trains run every two to five minutes during peak hours, every five minutes for the rest of the day and every ten minutes in the evening.
Maybe the other people were afraid of using the same train like little famous Toyvoyagers. :cyclops:


Posted Mar 5, 2014, 8:28 pm
Today we did what everybody did: watching the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Sochi! :cyclops:

First they showed the flag of the country: Russia

This is the team and flag of Alex' and Freya's home country: Germany

And then they also showed the team and flag of my country: Switzerland


Posted Mar 8, 2014, 9:57 pm
Hello Mommy,

today we had a little  bit time for a stopover in Dessau. It is situated on a floodplain where the Mulde flows into the Elbe. This causes yearly floods. The worst flood took place in the year 2002, when the Waldersee district was nearly completely flooded. It is surrounded by numerous parks and palaces that ranks Dessau as one of the greenest towns in Germany.

These are the towers of the city. (f.l.t.r.) The old castle, the church and the city hall.

We walked along the river Mulde.

The we walked down to the water...

Look, this is were the floodd was in 2002!

Your Rocky

Posted Mar 20, 2014, 10:57 am
Hello Mommy,

we spent this wonderful day at the airport Tempelhof. It was designated as an airport by the Ministry of Transport on 8 October 1923. The old terminal was originally constructed in 1927.
Throughout the Cold War years, Tempelhof was the main terminal for American military transport aircraft accessing West Berlin.
The airport closed in 2008. And there's one plane still left. Maybe they forgot it?! :stare:

Today the area is opened for everyone to do all kind of activities like skating, taking dogs for a walk, biking etc.
There's ALWAYS enough wind to fly kites. :cyclops:


Posted Mar 21, 2014, 11:37 pm
Hello Mommy,

today we jumped into the car to visit the Harz Mountains which is the highest mountain range in Northern Germany. Our destination was a small city called Wernigerode.

The Wernigerode castle was finished in the late 19th century and is similar in style to Neuschwanstein Castle, though its foundations are much older.

This city has a beautiful town hall and market place with a nice fountain.

Then we left Wernigerode and visited the Thumkuhlental where we found a reconstruction of an old mine water management system (Wasserkunst). There's an old mine close to that place, but nowadays it is closed.

Your little

Posted Mar 21, 2014, 11:50 pm
Today Freya left us. As gentlemen we hugs her a lot. ;)

Posted Apr 3, 2014, 9:23 pm
Hello Mommy,

the sun was shining today so we went back to Tempelhof for some skating. We had a lot of fun!


Posted Apr 3, 2014, 9:33 pm
Hello Mom,

my host had to go to the "Buchmesse" in Leipzig. It's a really famous fair. There were so many people with manga-styled clothes! Unfortunately we couldn't take pictures inside. But after the fair we decided to take a ride through the city. :D

Your Rocky

Posted Apr 3, 2014, 9:51 pm
Hello Mommy,

we went back to the Harz mountains for some hiking! :cyclops:
Today our destination was Thale, a small city in the state of Saxony-Anhalt. It's famous for the Hexentanzplatz ("Witches' Dancefloor"), but we didn't visit this site. We were too afraid of the witches! :stare:
In the city we found an eight-legged horse with the name is Sleipnir. :o The horse told us that it is a figur from the Norse mythology. It told us the whole story, but I was still so impressed about all these legs that I don't remember the rest of the story. :stare:
Later we were allowed to take a pic with Sleipnir.

Look at the beautiful church close to Sleipnir! It's the St. Peter's Church which was completed in 1906.

Then we visited the second famous sight of the city! The Rosstrappe is a 403 m high granite crag. Let me tell you the story about it: According to the legend, a giant by the name of Bodo once followed the king’s beautiful daughter, Brunhilde, whom he wanted to marry against her will. Brunhilde escaped on a white stallion (German: Ross), but was suddenly confronted by a deep ravine. Her horse leapt in one bound to the rocks on the other side, but her pursuer fell into the depths below. The impression of the horse’s hoof may still be seen today.

Your little impressed Rocky

Posted Apr 8, 2014, 11:24 pm
Hello Mommy,

we spent another day in the Harz mountains! :cyclops:

Today we visited some famous places around Blankenburg (Harz). The city lies on the northern edge of the Harz mountains at a height of about 234 metres.

We decided to go hiking. Our first stop was the Regenstein Mill, which was a water-powered corn and oil mill below Regenstein Castle north of the city.
The mill was built in the first half of the 12th century in order to supply the castle. Between 1988 and 1991, work was carried out to uncover this channel over a length of about 500 metres. Around 1990 the two mill wheels were reconstructed.

Our next stop were the rocks of the "Großvaterfelsen". These rocks belong to the famous Devil's Wall (Teufelsmauer), which is a rock formation made of hard sandstones of the Upper Cretaceous. The "Großvaterfelsen" is 317 m above NN. Phuuuuu, you can't imagine how hard it is to climb it up as a tiny tv. :o
But from the top we had a nice view over the city of Blankenburg and the Blankenburg castle! :cyclops:

While we were still taking pictures on the rocks my host climbed upstairs and giggled about the problems we had to come down. :thinking:

When we were back to the car we decided to go to the Regenstein Castle! It is a ruined castle which was built in the early and high Middle Ages on a 294 metre high sandstone rock towering over the surrounding area, only ruins are visible today. Several internal rooms, carved into the rock, have survived. This was so amazing! :cyclops:

Your impressed Rocky

Posted Apr 17, 2014, 8:31 pm
Hey Mommy,

we went to the border. What border? The border between the federal states of Berlin and Brandenburg.
I'm standing in Berlin. On the other side of the water you can see Brandenburg. :cyclops:
The river is called Teltow Canal which is 37.83 kilometres long. It links the river Havel and the river Dahme.

Your Rocky

Posted Apr 17, 2014, 8:37 pm
We met a new Toyvoyager. Her name is Snow White.

Posted Apr 23, 2014, 8:56 pm
Hello Mommy,

we did a ride in the car on the freeway. Normally it's not so interesting, but look at this sunset!!! ;)

Your Rocky

Posted Apr 23, 2014, 9:01 pm
Hello Mommy,

today I left this house and traveled on to a new host.
I really hope that it doesn't take to long to get there! :stare:


Posted Apr 26, 2014, 11:59 am
Hi mommy,

I’m eventually at my new host mom’s home :)! Actually I arrived a couple of days earlier, but my host parents couldn’t welcome me sooner as they were on holiday… But now I’m there and enjoy spring sunshine!
When I crawled out of my travel envelope, I felt that I was longing for sunshine so hard – I looked out of the window and could feel the warmth and smell the flowers – I needed to go outside at once!
But first I enjoyed a nice cup of espresso – I was sooo tired from my journey…

Before I went outside, I met my host brother Hotte. He gave me a very warm welcome and offered to show me around. So we went outside into the garden. There were a lot of flowers – I looove the scent of spring! While lilac flowers aren’t blooming yet, dandelion flowers have already withered and changed into a blowball! Of course I gave it a try and blowed onto it to spread its seeds!

And then I got to know another new friend: his name is Aris and he’s a very friendly dog.

After a very interesting day I was finally overpowered by sleep and had to go to bed!

Lots of love to you mommy!
Your Rocky

Posted Apr 26, 2014, 1:58 pm
Hello mom,

today we went for a little walk into the forest. I just can't get enough of springtime and its flowers. So I have to see it all before they're fading...

When we started at home the sun was shining, but when we arrived at the forest, more and more clouds were showing up so that we were a little worried about rain... But we were lucky! No rain! So we could hike up the hills and take a look into the heart of the forest!

We came across a bench, where we rested for a while and then we started back for home.

Hugs and kisses to you mom!
Your Rocky

Posted May 2, 2014, 6:15 pm
Hi mommy,

what a lazy day! Actually I wanted to go outside and check out the place a little more, but when I looked out of the window and saw the grey sky, I wasn't in the mood to move at all.
So I played with host mom's budgies for a while. First they were a bit afraid of me, but then we got friends :)!
A bit later in the afternoon I gave it a try and went outside. Everything is so green and I love the scent of spring after the rain. So I dipped into this green leaf ocean and enjoyed the fresh air! My big dog friend was with me to protect me ;)!

After a rainy afternoon it ended with some rays of sunlight. I hope we will see more of it in the next days!

Yours, Rocky

Posted May 8, 2014, 4:05 pm
Hi there,

I'm so glad the sun is shining again! I hate rainy weather, it really makes me sick and lazy!

So for today I decided to go outside together with Aris, the dog! I went into the woods and played with him. He was running and huffing around like crazy - it's his job to check out where the wild animals are, he's a German hound and knows exactly what to do! So I was watching him and thought about what it is like to have such a sensitive nose like dogs do...!

Then I inspected a hide and climbed it up - you really have a wonderful view from up there! We also passed by a salt lick. These are very important for red deer, as they need additional minerals in order to build up their antlers.

On our way back home we came across a little area full of sweet woodruff - how beautiful it was!

Finally I was even very lucky, as I found the first little ladybird - so I'm ready for all the luck to come  B)!
I also send a bit of my luck to you mommy!

Love you,
your Rocky

Posted May 11, 2014, 7:08 pm
Hi mom,

uhhhhhhh today we did something veeery special! We went on a tour with alpacas! Host dad loves these animals, so we went to a farm where there are two of them! And we were allowed to put a leash on them and take them for a walk.
It was soooo wonderful. Their names were Marf and Janosch and they were both sooo funny! Have you ever heard what kind of strange sounds they make? We almost died of laughter!!!

It was such a great day with a lot of fun, sunshine and laughter!

Your Rocky

Posted May 11, 2014, 7:13 pm
Hello mommy!

I just wanted to tell you that I miss you and that I love you!


Hugs and kisses!
Your Rocky

Posted May 19, 2014, 4:27 pm
Hi mom,

today was "TAKE YOUR CHILD TO WORK DAY" - or that's what we called it  ;)! I was allowed to attend host mom to school - she's a teacher. She teaches biology, so she showed me around in the special rooms for science.
First I made myself familiar with DNA - the genetic information in our cells. This strange thing is in every single cell IN OUR BODY - I almost couldn't believe it!

Then I was doing some research with the microscope - the tiny world you can see there is soooo amazing!!!

I looked at all the animals which have to be taught to the children. One of the most interesting things was the dentition of a shark. WOOOOOW these teeth are so scary, I hope I'll never meet a real shark, even if it's as small as that one...

I was also wondering how turtles feel...

... and how you would see with those eyes...

And I had to admit that I'm a veeery small mammal!
This is me in comparison to a humans skull...

And this is me in comparison to a monkey skull...

Host mom said I'm such a cutie - small but wow  B)!

Then it was time for a break.

I looked out of the window and hoped that the weather will change very soon - I NEED SUNSHINE! And look! There's a spot of blue sky! Yay! Summer will come this week, I'm sure!

Lots of hugs to you!
Your Rocky

Posted May 25, 2014, 8:08 pm
Hi mom,

I'm a little confused about the weather here in Germany. I was looking forward to a sunny day when I watched this beautiful and colorful sunset yesterday! And when I woke up this morning the sun was shining brightly and I decided to put some sunscreen on B) - just to be sure... I heard that having a sunburn is not a very funny thing...!
But then, out of nothing, many dark clouds were masking our nice blue sky. It looked like in the movie "Independence Day" - I was almost waiting for the aliens to show up from within these clouds...
Actually the clouds were passing by, NO RAIN, NO ALIENS! Lucky me...!

Yours, Rocky

Posted May 25, 2014, 8:21 pm
Hello mommy,

as the weather is pretty nice again, I wanted to go outside. So we strolled around in the city centre and enjoyed the sun. Host mom took some nice pictures of me. The fountain on the market square is a very old one. It was built in the 16th century and on top of it there is the outline of a knight (Duke Ulrich). The other outline is that of an elderly woman with sunglasses - the sun always shines in Balingen B) - at least in summer...!

So long!

Posted Jun 3, 2014, 4:15 pm
Hi mommy,

we drove to Saarbrücken - this is where host dad lives - and started our day with a wonderful breakfast. Sweet and good and solid - so nice!

Then we went on a little shopping tour there. Saarbrücken and its surroundings are famous for their former ironworks. This building has been left from that time.

The shopping mall was so crowded that we left it quite fast. But there is one very nice picture of me on a "Beatles Box". We don't know why it was there, but it was a lovely photo-location ;)!

Then we decided just to stroll around in the city and do a little bit of sightseeing :)!

This is the Johanneskirche. Host dad lives directly opposite that very nice Protestant church from the 19th century.

This is the entry to the church's garden...

... and its very nice golden gate...

... inside there's a little maze...

... wonderful figures...

... and beautiful flowers!

This is the view from our window on the town hall square!

A lovely sunny day to sit on the window sill and relax!

This is Saarbrücken's town hall...

... and its lovely fountain.

In the evening we let the day fade away with a nice glass of wine in one of the best bars in Saarbrücken.

I heard that you've found a new host for me! I'm very excited for my new adventures :)! I will start my journey in the next days!

Love you mom!
Your Rocky

Posted Jun 4, 2014, 12:47 pm
Hello mommy,

today was my day to say goodbye! My journey continues and I'm ready for new adventures B)!

I T A L Y      HERE  I  COME!!!

I said goodbye to my dog friend - he hugged me and wished me a safe trip.

Then my friend Lucky bid me farewell. This was the hardest one as we've really become good friends!
He also gave me a big hug and a small but special gift for me and my next host: a chocolate ladybird, thus Lucky wished me the best of luck for my future journeys.
He's a real good friend, I'm gonna miss him...!

So now I'm ready for take-off B)! Host mom also gave me some more gifts for my next host - I hope I can catch some of these gummi bears...

One last big hug for host mom and one last glimpse of Lucky, and then I crawled into my travel envelope!

It was quite a nice time here, and I hope that I'll meet Lucky again sometime...!

Hope to be on the fast lane and arrive in Italy very soon!

Hugs and kisses to you mommy!
Yours, Lucky

Posted Jan 26, 2015, 2:22 pm
Hi mum :-)
I'm arrived in Italy. It is very hot here.
My host offered me a fresh apple juice to restore me :-)


Posted Jan 26, 2015, 2:32 pm
The day is raining. Today we are going to a Goldmoon friend's home, to have a sort of pic nic.

Posted Jan 26, 2015, 2:44 pm
Hi mum, we are prepairing our suitcases because Tomorrow we'll leave for a 4 days tour in the centre of Italy!!

Posted Jan 26, 2015, 10:11 pm
Let's take the highway! We are going to Tuscany!

Posted Jan 26, 2015, 10:16 pm
Here we are in Florence. The trafic is terrible!

Posted Jan 26, 2015, 10:29 pm
We are in Florence because Goldmoon has a medical meeting with a doctor who works at Careggi Hospital. We arrived a little early, so we had a little walk in the suburb of the city and we met this Majestic building.
This is the "Accademia della crusca" (Academy of the bran). It is an Italian society for scholars and Italian linguists and philologists. It is the most important research institution on Italian Language and it is the oldest linguistic academy in the world.
The Accademia was founded in Florence in 1583 and it has been characterized by its efforts to maintain the purity of the Italian Language.
The academy is nowadays a member of the European Federation of National Linguistic Institutes. It is located in Piazza delle lingue d'Europa (European languages square).

Posted Jan 27, 2015, 10:16 am
Some view of Careggi Hospital, a very modern building.
And a strange sculpture placed along the internal walkway

Posted Jan 27, 2015, 10:24 am
Let's continue our travel. We are leaving Florence because we'll spend the night in Grosseto (Tuscany)
We had some rain during the travel, but luckily only for some minutes :-)


Posted Jan 27, 2015, 10:35 am
Our hotel and dinner in Grosseto.

Posted Jan 27, 2015, 10:37 am
The restaurant is full of interesting photos on the walls, like that.

Posted Feb 1, 2015, 11:08 am
We woke up at 7.00 this morning, because we are going to visit the Promontory of Argentario. It's about 50 kms from here.
We are having breakfast at the buffet of the hotel. For me: muffin and orange juice.

Posted Feb 1, 2015, 12:47 pm
Some view of the travel to Argentario.
The promontory of Argentario  is located in the province of Grosseto, surrounded by the Tyrrhenian Sea.
Argentario was originally an island, which over the centuries has come to get connected to the nearby mainland for lifting before Bolster Feniglia (action of the ocean), and then also the Bolster Giannella (storage material coming from the nearby river Albegna).
The territory of the promontory is almost completely hilly and sometimes inaccessible

Posted Feb 1, 2015, 5:48 pm
Our first stop is the town of Porto Santo Stefano, in the northern part of the promontory.

Posted Feb 1, 2015, 6:17 pm
We have a little tour of the promontory, then we reach the city of Orbetello.

Posted Feb 8, 2015, 5:15 pm
We had a walk in the city of Orbetello. These are some view of the place:

Posted Feb 8, 2015, 5:30 pm
"Porta Nuova" is an imposing building with three entrances to the city. Once Orbetello was completely surrounded by walls.

Posted Feb 8, 2015, 5:34 pm
Building of Podestà is under maintenance...

Posted Feb 8, 2015, 5:36 pm
"Concattedrale of Santa Maria Assunta is the cathedral of Orbetello.


Posted Feb 8, 2015, 6:03 pm
At around noon, we are leaving Tuscany and we are going to another Italian Region: Lazio.
We are going to Tuscania, in the province of Viterbo. We are going to visit the place were a friend of goldmoon lives.
Just the time for a sandwich, so to reach Tuscania in early afternoon.


Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:21 pm
Here we are arrived in Tuscania. This is one of the ancient access to the historical centre of the city.


Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:24 pm
From the enormous balcony of our hotel room, we have a full view of the historical centre of the city, all surrounded by ancient walls.

Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:37 pm
We begin our tour of the city visiting the Church of Saint Pietro, placed outside the historical walls.
The Church of San Pietro in Tuscania is located on the homonymous hill which was probably site of the Etruscan acropolis. In front of the church there is a grassy area where still remain two of the mighty towers (memory of the strategic importance of the area)


Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:42 pm
I'll show you some of the monuments inside the historical walls.

This is the Church of Santa Maria della rosa


Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:45 pm
The Church of Santa Maria del riposo.

Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:53 pm
The fountain of the "sette cannelle" (seven spouts). Owes its name to the seven masks, now very worn out, from which flows the water that goes into the basin below.


Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:55 pm
This is the town hall of Tuscania.
Tuscania has about 8,000 inhabitants.

Posted Feb 11, 2015, 9:58 pm
At the end of the day, we ate a very particular pizza. In fact, it is served on two plates and it is very thin.

Posted Feb 16, 2015, 7:38 pm
Breakfast in Tuscania. We are leaving this lovely place because we are going to Passignano on the Trasimeno. We have a 170 kms trip...

Posted Feb 16, 2015, 7:54 pm
Passignano is a small village near the Trasimeno Lake, in central Italy. We stopped here because the trip to home is really long. Goldmoon's boyfriend booked a hotel with swimming pool!! We stayed near the water until the time of dinner :-D


Posted Feb 16, 2015, 7:56 pm
Dinner in Passignano.
Chicken with peaches and potatoes. Lemon sorbetto.


Posted Feb 16, 2015, 8:17 pm
Breakfast in Passignano: bread with jam and orange juice.
We are leaving Passignano and slowly come back to northern Italy. We want to have dinner near Florence, in a restaurant that goldmoon's boyfriend loves a lot. As we have about one hour before lunch, we decided to visit the Florence American Cemetery.


Posted Feb 16, 2015, 8:46 pm
The Florence American Cemetery and Memorial is about 12 kilometers from Florence, in a place called "Falciani".
It is located on an area donated by the Italian government to the United States of America for the burial of soldiers killed during the liberation campaign in Italy in 1945 (Second world war).

Posted Feb 16, 2015, 8:59 pm
After this historical visit, we had lunch.
Appetizer: bruschetta with tomato cubes.
Beef tagliata.
And a piece of cake. Because today is Goldmoon's birthday!! :-D


Posted Mar 5, 2015, 2:53 am


Posted Mar 5, 2015, 3:19 am
Hi guys hi Jasper,
What a long nap I had! I woke up this morning and found myself in...on umm..what?..Springfield?!
No way..can't be America. I'm sure goldmoon told me I'll be in Beijing with a girl called Mia..

:oThen my friends showed up!
From left to right, they are Eliott Cherry Lola MooseS Anton Bär Slowly-Slowly and Crabs. Cherry gave me her dextrose. I told her I'm fine just slept too much...she even gave me a lot of kisses to cheer me up. How sweet she is! Still feel a bit dizzy...maybe I need more sleep..


Posted Mar 6, 2015, 8:29 am
I took these photos on the way back to my host's home. :)
Mia forgot to pay the tuition fee online before the deadline so she had to go to school today. Hmm, I went with her. She said it's time to do exercise, then she decided to ride bike to school and then she regretted. It was so smoggy outside!
Let me took us 45 mins to get there. We cycled about 24km in total!
Haha you see how much she likes cycling.

Posted Mar 9, 2015, 7:46 am
Here are some photos I took on Qianmen Street
It's not far from Tiananmen Square.
People come here to buy souvenirs, clothes, jewelry.
On this street you can find most of Beijing food you've heard.
Like Beijing Duck, Beijing Noodles...and all kinds of snacks!
And I'm so happy to meet Simão IV today!
He showed us around the street. :)

Posted Mar 9, 2015, 7:58 am
Just right beside the Qianmen Street, there is a narrow street called Zhubaoshi.

Posted Mar 9, 2015, 8:07 am
Heading to the west, we passed through a hutong called Langfangsantiao.
I saw a big menu, some old posters and a fancy moped. :p

Posted Mar 9, 2015, 11:23 am
This is a group photo we took in front of the Daoxiangcun shop. :)

Posted Mar 12, 2015, 12:32 pm
The buildings on the photos below are Chairman Mao Memorial Hall and Zhengyangmen.
And I saw a group of security guard. :stare:

Posted Mar 12, 2015, 12:36 pm
When we were waiting for the traffic lights, I saw the Railway Museum:)
Sounds interesting, maybe I could go visit there next time.

Posted Mar 12, 2015, 1:01 pm
We were cycling on the road beside Tiananmen Square.
Hello again Chairman Mao Memorial Hall.. :)
hmm and the Great Hall of the People, the square.

Posted Mar 12, 2015, 1:11 pm
Here is the National Museum.
Hmmm..I just stayed for a little while, didn't go inside. :thinking:
You can't imagine how many people were waiting to get inside the museum.
I saw a long queue after I turned right on Changan Ave.

Posted Mar 15, 2015, 12:32 pm
Today we rode bike along the Changan Ave. B)
There are some important buildings on this avenue.

1. CCTV building, the Spring Festival Gala was held in there.
2. Military Museum
3. The Capital Museum
4. The People's Bank of China, they print RMB
5. A building about telephone
6. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China
7. Another bank
8. Xidan, a shopping area

9. Beijing Books Building, Mia always went there with friends and she can stay there all day when she was a little girl.
10. A building about telegram
11. Zhongnanhai, the President of China lives there.
12. National Center for the Performing Arts
13. Just passed by the Tiananmen Square 

Our route was from west to east about 8km in total. 
If we take subway line 1, it starts at Military Museum Station and ends at Wangfujing Station.

Posted Mar 15, 2015, 12:38 pm
I took these pictures at Fuxingmen, men means Gate.
The street on the 1st picture below is the Second Ring Road of Beijing.
On the third picture you can see the buildings of Beijing Financial Street.

Posted Mar 15, 2015, 1:10 pm
Watching fish... :thinking:
Aha, let me introduce this little turtle, his name is Shaoye.   
We are umm..acquaintances..sort of.
I think he likes me. :)

Posted Mar 20, 2015, 12:39 pm
Today I went to Capital Museum with MooseS.

Last time we just passed by the museum didn't go inside when we rode bicycle along the Changan Ave. Different from the National Museum, the building of Capital Museum is more simple, looks like a modern architecture. This museum opened to the public on May 18th 2008, it covers 24,800 square meters and houses more than 200,000 collections. The former National Museum was located in the Confucius Temple and formally opened to the public in 1981.

We went to B1 first, there was a special exhibition about goats, because this year is goat year. I saw the goat stamps of 2015 and the first Chinese Zodiacs stamps which were published in 1991.
Wow that is a bronze ware from Shang Dynasty, over 3000 years old! :o
Look at these two tiny goats, haha their faces are so funny...they are from Han Dynasty, means they are about 1800 years old. Sorry I have to respect them. You see that two men riding goats? They are Buddha's protectors. And that Buddha is Mercy Buddha. They are from Qing Dynesty.

Posted Mar 20, 2015, 2:51 pm
There was an exhibition about water, it actually introduced the South-to-North Water Diversion Project.
That is a underground model of Wukesong, where is quite close to my host's home. And that pipe is huge!
After the water pipe exhibition, I saw some random relics and antiques. :)
More bronzes, potteries and antique furnitures, a sword with pattern of Triones under X-ray, some gold Buddhas, old coins, an ancient Astronomical Instrument! That is rare, a Cross of Yuan Dynasty. Look at these hats with gold dragons, emperors would wear them in Ming Dynasty. Wow that red coat is so exquisite, the dragons and children are shiny! It's supposed to have 100 children on it? Can you find half of them on the photo?
Ummm..that is Shichahai, following with a model of an old town according to the painting. :thinking:
Interesting Chinese lady in western clothes and a foreign lady in Qing dress. Some newspapers about Chairman Mao and some old stuff were used at Tiananmen on National Day, 1949. Chairman Mao spoke into that microphone claimed that The People's Republic of China was founded.

Posted Mar 21, 2015, 12:37 am
I was wandering at the exhibition Cambodian Ancient Cultural Relics and Arts.
Wow...they have elephant Buddha in Cambodia, I should call Eliott to come have a look.  :)
I also saw the character Garuda from 'Night at the Museum 3' ! Haha he is a funny guy in the movie, but a bit serious at museum.
Look! That's the snake with five heads! Who was beaten by Larry using taser gun in movie. :stare:

Posted Mar 23, 2015, 12:59 am
Here is an exhibition about Chinese porcelain, some antiques from Song to Qing Dynasty :)
Wow..that is a porcelain pillow, must be very uncomfortable. How can they sleep on it?
A model was showing us the whole process of how to produce porcelain.
Then we arrived at the top floor of the museum. B)
I saw a lot of traditional Beijing stuff for birthday and wedding.
That old photo looks familiar to me, I feel like I've seen that building... :thinking:
.. it is Qianmen Street! I've been there! It seems that building has never changed, while people's outfits are totally different.
I finally took a look at the Changan Ave before leave. :stare:

Posted Mar 24, 2015, 3:45 pm
Today I took some photos at Wangjing SOHO. :)
Here are the info I found online.

Wangjing SOHO is a complex of three curvilinear asymmetric skyscrapers in Wangjing, a suburb of Beijing, China between central Beijing and Beijing Capital International Airport. According to Zaha Hadid, the project's architect, it is a "welcome and farewell to Beijing".The towers contain both office and retail space. Originally the SOHO was designed as a two-tower complex but due to height concerns it was redesigned as a three-tower project featuring towers of lower maximum height.The complex officially opened on 20 September 2014.

Posted Mar 25, 2015, 12:15 pm
We drove to the Eleventh International Conference on Green and Energy-Efficient Building & New Technologies and Products Expo.
The Expo was held at China National Convention Center, very close to the Olympic Park. The presenter was giving a lecture on how to build an environmental friendly city. Umm..a bit too professional. Why don't we go out to see the Bird's Nest?

Posted Mar 25, 2015, 1:00 pm
It was so much fun to take a walk at the Olympic Park. B)
Especially with my friends Slowly-Slowly Eliott Anton Bär Simão IV Cherry Lola MooseS and Mia. Besides Birds' Nest and Water Cube, there are some interesting sculptures are waiting to be found at the park. I also saw a lot of people were roller skating around there.

Posted Apr 4, 2015, 9:40 pm
Over the you can see The Two Towers, which are the symbol of Bologna, and the most high of the many Towers of Bologna.
The taller one is called the Asinelli while the smaller is called the Garisenda. Their names come from the families which are traditionally credited for their construction between 1109 and 1119.
Asinelli Tower is 97.2 m high. The Garisenda Tower initially was approximately 60 m high, but had to be lowered in the 14th century due to a yielding of the ground which left it slanting and dangerous; now is 48 m high.
Towers is Middle Age were built as challenge between important families. The higher was the tower, the most important was the family.

Posted Apr 4, 2015, 9:43 pm
The Basilica of San Petronio is the main church of Bologna. It dominates Piazza Maggiore. It is the sixth largest church of Europe. It's 132 metres long and 66 metres wide, while the vault reaches 45 metres inside and 51 metres in the facade.

The basilica is dedicated to the saint patron of the city, Saint Petronius, who was the bishop of Bologna in the fifth century. The construction was a communal project of Bologn: the property was a symbol of communal power that was not transferred from the city to the diocese until 1929; the basilica was finally consecrated in 1954.

Posted Apr 4, 2015, 9:46 pm
Look! a rainbow!

Posted Apr 4, 2015, 9:52 pm
Today we are going to a small place called "Mezzolara". It is about 15 kms from Goldmoon's house. We came here to control that cat Oliver is fine while his humans are on holidays.

Posted Apr 4, 2015, 9:56 pm
Gorgeous sky before the rain

Posted Apr 4, 2015, 10:02 pm
Dinner at Wienerhouse in Bologna

Posted Apr 7, 2015, 2:33 am
We had lunch at Huguosi Snack. Wow how huge this Fried Dough Twists is!
We also ordered fried noodles and Sugar Crisps Pancakes, with a kind of fried meat snack. Sure it's not pork cause this is a Moslem restaurant.
Here is the recipe for the twists, I'd like to make one someday. B)
2 cups flour
2 eggs
2 tablespoons canola oil, plus more for frying
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup water
Mix together all ingredients to form a smooth, hard dough. This is important so that the dough twists maintain their shape and don't stick together before frying. Working with about a third of the dough at a time, roll out on a lightly floured surface into a circle that is a little less than a quarter of an inch thick. Slice horizontally into strips. Cut those strips into two inch rectangles where possible, but not wasting any of the leftover pieces. With all pieces, including irregular ones, slice slit lengthwise down middle of dough about a quarter of an inch from either end.
Working with one piece of dough at a time, pull one end through the center so that a twist forms. Pull that same end through again so that the strip is more twisted. Set aside on a tray. Repeat with rest of the dough.
Drop batches of twists into a pot of hot oil and fry until golden brown on each side. This will happen quickly so be sure to flip diligently. Remove onto a paper towel-lined plate and serve.

*After cooling completely, twists will last weeks in an airtight container.


Posted Apr 7, 2015, 2:43 am
Sometimes I just want to hang out with myself.  :stare:
Here are the old photos I took when I arrived in Beijing.

Posted Apr 14, 2015, 1:38 pm
We took a stroll in the campus, it's such a beautiful university!  :)
Very impressive. The trees there just so fancy look like from the fairytale.
The first photo is me in front of the old university gate.
The original Soochow University was founded by Methodists in Suzhou, Jiangsu, Qing Dynasty in 1900 as a merger of three existing institutions: the Buffington Institute and the Kung Hang School in the city of Soochow (now spelled Suzhou), in Jiangsu Province, and the Anglo-Chinese College in Shanghai.
After the Chinese Civil War, members of the Soochow Alumni Association who moved to Taiwan established a new institution in Taiwan in 1951 to make up for the Soochow University lost in mainland China. A law school was opened in 1954, and a full university was certified in 1971.
After the establishment of the PRC, the institution in Suzhou merged with the Southern Jiangsu College of Culture and Education and the Department of Mathematics and Physics at Jiangnan University to form the Jiangsu Teacher's College in 1952. The English name Soochow University was revived in 1982; however, the original Chinese name Dongwu was not adopted, and the institution was given the name Suzhou .

Posted Apr 18, 2015, 4:36 pm
Today we visited Pingtan Museum:)

Pingtan created by the work of the Pingtan artists which enjoys great popularity in Jiangnan.
The long history has also laid a solid foundation for its development. Its contents are rich, though the form is simple. "story telling, joke cracking, music playing and aria singing" are the performing techniques, while "reasoning, tastes, unexpectedness, interest and minuteness" are the artistic features.

Although it originated in Suzhou 400 years ago, Pingtan flourished in Shanghai with the development of commerce and culture at the turn of the 19th century and 20th century. After that, Pingtan became a new form of performance by innovating and carrying on the tradition.
Look! There was a piece of old Shanghai newspaper talking about Pingtan. :stare:

Posted Apr 20, 2015, 7:16 am
Today is our 2nd day in Suzhou, we were about to take a walk on Guanqian Street. :rolleyes:
The street is located in Suzhou city centre, the commercial part of the city.
Haha, sounds a bit like Qianmen Street of Beijing, doesn't it?
There is a really beautiful historic site on the street which is Xuanmiao Temple.
Xuanmiao Temple was founded in Xianning 2nd year (AD 276), Western Jin Dynasty, and was initially named "Zhen Qing Dao Yuan". It was destroyed by wars in Southern Song Dynasty. It was rebuilt in the Chunxi era (1174–1189) of the reign of Emperor Xiaozong of Song, and was renamed Xuanmiao Guan in 1264. During the reign of the Kangxi Emperor in the Qing Dynasty, the temple was renamed Yuanmiao Guan to avoid naming taboo because the emperor's personal name, Xuanye, contained the Chinese character xuan.

Posted Apr 20, 2015, 7:49 am
After the short visit at Xuanmiao Temple, we came to Zhuhongxing to have lunch which is recommended by the Lonely Planet travel guide.
Zhuhongxing is one of the Suzhou's most popular noodle joints, this long-standing canteen style place serves some scrummy and filling noodles.
I should try the lovely crispy duck noodles. B)
Mia said she's trying hard to be a vegetarian but she can't give up duck and lamb, look she ordered duck rice with sweet sour sauce this time.

Posted Apr 21, 2015, 3:28 pm
We got to Pingjiang Road this morning. It's on the top of our must go visit list. I took a break beside the river with my lovely friends MooseS Cherry Lola and Slowly-Slowly, watching boats passing by.
During Song and Yuan Period Suzhou was also called Pingjiang, so the name was also used for this road. Now an artery road of the Pingjiang historic block, it has still retained its ancient city styles and manners of a water land of "canal goes along with allay when river neighbors to the street" up to now. Among the existing historic spots here are Quanjin Guild, Weidao Taoist Temple, former residences of Tang Na and Guo Shaoyu, as well as the Couple's Garden Retreat, which has been inscribed on the World Heritage List.

Posted Apr 21, 2015, 4:01 pm
It's museum time! Today we are about to visit Suzhou Museum. B)
The current building of Suzhou Museum was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning Chinese-American architect I.M. Pei in association with Pei Partnership Architects. The multi-year process of designing, building and inaugurating the new museum was chronicled in PBS's American Masters television documentary series in an 2010 episode entitled "I.M. Pei: Building China Modern".
The museum has a display area of 2,200 square meters. It has more than 15,000 pieces in its collections. Most are ancient paintings and calligraphy, ceramics, crafts, unearthed relics and revolution relics. It also possesses more than 70,000 books and documents, and over 20,000 rubbings of stone inscriptions. The collection of paintings and calligraphy includes works of masters from Song Dynasty to Ming and Qing dynasties.

Posted Apr 21, 2015, 4:35 pm
River, bridges, cat, dog and birds. You know what ..I could stay here all day. :rolleyes:

Posted Apr 21, 2015, 5:18 pm
I felt a bit chilly strolling along the lakeside. It seems that Suzhou is much more windy than Beijing, at least in these days. But look at this beautiful night view, no rush to go...
Jinji Lake (literally Golden Rooster Lake) is a small fresh water lake located in the central part of Suzhou Industrial Park. It occupies an area of 7.18 square kilometers and its average depth is about 2.5 to 3 meters. There are two man-made islands in the lake.

Posted Apr 21, 2015, 5:33 pm
This is Xiangmen, the eastern Gate of old Suzhou. Originally built during the Warring States Period in the state of Wu, was removed in 1958. :thinking:

Posted Apr 22, 2015, 5:37 am
I was heading to another city Hangzhou by train. :D
Hangzhou formerly romanised as Hangchow, is the capital and largest city of Zhejiang Province in Eastern China. It sits at the head of Hangzhou Bay on China's coast between Shanghai and Ningbo. Hangzhou grew to prominence as the southern terminus of the Grand Canal and has been one of the most renowned and prosperous cities in China for much of the last millennium, due in part to its beautiful natural scenery.
Hangzhou is classified as a sub-provincial city and forms the core of the Hangzhou Metropolitan Area, the fourth-largest metropolitan area in China.  During the 2010 Chinese census, the metropolitan area held 21.102 million people over an area of 34,585 km2 (13,353 sq mi).Hangzhou prefecture had a registered population of 8.7 million and the built-up area (including the 9 urban districts and the Keqiao and Yuecheng districts of Shaoxing) held 8,874,348.

Ew.. these figures made me headache. One good way to learn a city's history is to GO TO THE MUSEUM! :cyclops:

Posted Apr 22, 2015, 5:55 am
The Humble Administrator's Garden is a renowned Chinese garden in Suzhou. The garden is located at n°178 Dongbei Street. At 51,950 m2, it is the largest garden in Suzhou and is considered by some to be the finest garden in all of southern China. In 1997, Zhuozheng Yuan, along with other classical gardens of Suzhou was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
I literally enjoy chilling on the roof to appreciate the beauty of the garden. :)

Posted Apr 22, 2015, 6:31 am
I finally made it to Suzhou, I mean 18 hours train was about to kill me! Mia noticed the train would take so long when she was booking the tickets for us, she was curious if she can survive.

Okay, I totally pissed off and refused to talk to her in the whole morning after we arrived in Suzhou, till Mia apologized and promised to take the fastest bullet train back home, ummm..It'll only take 5 hours.
The first picture below is Beisi Pagoda, the very first attraction I've seen on tour.  :thinking:
It is a Chinese pagoda located at Bao'en Temple , the base of the pagoda has an octagonal frame, and the tower rises nine stories in a total height of 76 m (249 ft). The pagoda was once eleven stories tall, but was damaged and reduced to nine stories. its double eaves and flying corners are similar to that of the Liuhe Pagoda found in Hangzhou. Its base and outside walls are made of brick, the balustrades made of stone, and the eaves and banisters encircling the structure are made of wood.
Founded in 514 BC, Suzhou has over 2,500 years of history, with an abundant display of relics and sites of historical interest. At around 100 AD, during the Eastern Han Dynasty, it became one of the ten largest cities in the world mostly due to emigration from North China. Since the 10th-century Song Dynasty, it has been an important commercial center of China. During the Ming and Qing Dynasty, Suzhou was a national economic, cultural and commercial center, as well as the largest non-capital city in the world, until the 1860 Taiping Rebellion. When Li Hongzhang and Charles George Gordon recaptured the city three years later, Shanghai had already taken its predominant place in the nation. Since major economic reforms began in 1978, Suzhou has become one of the fastest growing major cities in the world, with GDP growth rates of about 14% in past 35 years. With high per capita incomes, Suzhou's Human Development Index ratings is roughly comparable to a moderately developed country, making it one of the most highly developed and prosperous cities in China.

The city's canals, stone bridges, pagodas, and meticulously designed gardens have contributed to its status as one of the top tourist attractions in China. The classical gardens in Suzhou were added to the list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1997 and 2000. Suzhou is often dubbed the "Venice of the East" or "Venice of China".

Posted Apr 22, 2015, 6:48 am
We spent 3 hours on highway to get to the small county at coast area. The sea just looks like yellow river...very disappointed. :(

Posted May 7, 2015, 8:21 am
We're back in Beijing, and I'm heading to Halle(Saale), Germany! Yay! My host tell me my new host loves taking photos. Haha..I'm so excited. I reckon I'll look more handsome in her photos. The most important thing is I'm going to meet my friend Anton Bär again!! How wonderful!

This is a group photo I took in front of the gate of National Academy of Chinese Theatre Arts a nice college for learning Beijing Opera. I was with my lovely friends MooseS Slowly-Slowly and Cherry Lola. We are friends forever.
Hope to see you guys again someday during the trips!!! :D
Germany I'm coming!!!

Posted May 7, 2015, 8:38 am
Beijing metro map and a photo with Jupiter. :rolleyes:

Posted Jun 17, 2015, 8:00 pm
I finally arrived in Halle. Wow, this was a long trip. I already met some new friends here. They look a bit scary, but are really nice.

And of course it was time for real good music.

Unfortunately Anton Bär has already traveled to another location. I hope he has a nice time.

Posted Aug 29, 2015, 10:14 am
Today it was very hot. I really wanted to take of my fur. So we were outside most of the day. I had some yummy fruit with the little son of my host.

Unfortunately the little one can be a bit rough sometimes.

Later I enjoyed the cool water. I even had my own boat.

In the evening we had a barbecue. This was so delicious.

Summer has now finally come.

Posted Aug 29, 2015, 10:18 am
Today another Toyvoyager arrived, Gigi the Giraffe. Of course we first had to have a snack together.

And another snack

Now we are really full and sleepy.

Posted Sep 29, 2015, 9:06 pm
Hi together
this morning we had to get up very early. A special trip was on the agenda.
We visited the Jungfraujoch.

The Jungfraujoch is a col between the Jungfrau and the Mönch. It lies at a height of 3,466 meters (11,371 ft) above sea level in the Bernese Alps, on the boundary between the cantons of Bern and Valais, halfway between Interlaken and Fiesch. It is a glacier pass, on the upper snows of the Aletsch Glacier, and part of the Jungfrau-Aletsch area.
At 7.35 we boarded the train in Interlaken to Grindelwald. We felt displaced in earlier times - so uncomfortable were the seats.

In Grindelwald we changed the train to Kleine Scheidegg.

The weather did not look very good - high fog. Mom calmed us: it will be beautiful.
And really, after a short time, we broke through the fog and had a breathtaking view.

Then an announcement came: Eiger North Face to the left. Not all of us were fast enough to see the infamous rock face.

Mom told us we all could admire them.

Next Stop: Kleine Scheidegg.

Mom, my human brother and some edgy TV's climb out of the train, run to the next platform, posing for a picture with the Eiger north face

and get on the next train.

The Jungfrau railway is a metre gauge rack railway which runs 9 kilometres (5.6 mi) from Kleine Scheidegg to the highest railway station in Europe at Jungfraujoch (3,454 m), between the Bernese Oberland and Valais in Switzerland.

For a few minutes we were silent and enjoyed the views of Lauterbrunnen valley

and the Eiger Glacier.

How big must have been this glacier, when one considers the abraded rock.
Then the train disappeared into a tunnel.

The railway runs almost entirely within the Jungfrau Tunnel, built into the Eiger and Mönch mountains and containing two stations in the middle of the tunnel, where passengers can disembark to observe the neighbouring mountains through windows built into the mountainside.
After a few minutes into the dark the announcement came: 5 min. stay into the Eigerwand Station.
Only separated by a window, the rock of the Eiger North Wall was close enough to touch.

And the view !!

Next stop was Eismeer. Here we marveled at the glacial ice

and the deep crevices.

And then we reached our destination: The Jungfraujoch railway station, at an elevation of 3,454 meters (11,332 ft) is the highest in Europe. It lies east of the saddle, below the Sphinx summit, and is connected to the Top of Europe building, which includes several panoramic restaurants and a post office. Several tunnels lead outside, where secured hiking trails on the crevassed glacier can be followed, in particular to the Mönchsjoch Hut.

After more than 2 hours on the train we just wanted to get out. So we took the elevator to the observation platform, which lies 117 meters above the station. With 6.3 m per second, we raced against the fresh air.

On the platform we enjoyed a spectacular panorama.

The Aletsch Glacier

The Aletsch Glacier is the largest glacier in the Alps. It has a length of about 23 km (14 mi) and covers more than 120 square kilometres (46 sq mi) in the eastern Bernese Alps in the Swiss canton of Valais. The Aletsch Glacier is composed of three smaller glaciers converging at Concordia, where its thickness was measured by the ETH to be near 1 km (3,300 ft). It then continues towards the Rhone valley before giving birth to the Massa River.
The whole area, including other glaciers is part of the Jungfrau-Aletsch Protected Area, which was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2001.

Der Mönch (4107m - 13474ft)

The Mönch ("monk") forms together with the Eiger and the Jungfrau a highly recognisable group of mountains visible from far away.

The Sphinx observatory

The Jungfrau

Then we took the elevator down and walked on the glacier.

We wanted to play in the snow, but Mom only allowed to walk on the marked area.

All around there are deep crevasses where we disappear forever.
In ice palace it was mostly too dark to take pictures.

After a last panoramic view of the imposing mountains we had to head home.

It was such a great day.


Posted Oct 12, 2015, 2:34 pm

today Gigi and I played hide and seek in the garden. We had so much fun.

By accident we met this huge eagle and he was kind enough to give us a ride.

Posted Oct 12, 2015, 2:47 pm

today was a very sunny day, again. To keep us entertained we played a bit in the sandbox.

Posted Oct 12, 2015, 2:58 pm

today we finally visited the Beatles Museum. This was so exciting. They had tons of Beatles stuff. I wish I could have taken all of it home with me.

They organized the exhibit from the birth of the Beatles through today. There were a lot of photos and some very funny displays, where you could take photos.

And of course there was a lot of merchandising. Some things were amazing, like this Beatles dress.

And how do you like me as the fifth Beatle?

Not far from the museum was this pretty fountain. It is called "Eselsbrunnen" (donkey fountain) because of the figure with the donkey.

It was a great day.

Posted Oct 12, 2015, 3:03 pm
I am heading home. Good bye Halle!

Posted Oct 12, 2015, 3:42 pm
Hi together

I'm on my way to Miami, Florida.

And I'm in a hurry.

Actually, I wanted to start last Monday. But - Mom got a bad cold and so I had to wait until today.

But now nothing can stop me.
Miami, I come !!!

See you soon

Posted Dec 1, 2015, 10:00 pm
I'm here! I'm here! Let me out!