Theodore, Gieselwerder, Germany


Posted Dec 11, 2007, 4:08 am
Hi!  My name is Theodore, and I am very excited about being here on Toy Voyagers!  I have joined the Asia & Oceania trail, so I should be traveling soon! 

Posted Dec 15, 2007, 6:17 pm
I am leaving Miami today and heading for Malaysia!  My friends have gathered around to wish me well on my travels.


Posted Feb 2, 2008, 6:30 pm
After a ver~~y long journey, I finally arrived at Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lumpur & safely conquered it.

Posted Feb 2, 2008, 6:43 pm
I've been invited to the Imperial Courtyard at Suria KLCC for the Chinese's traditional music appreciation. They put a really good show  :)

Posted Feb 17, 2008, 11:43 am
Hi everyone,

Today would be my last day in Malaysia so Aliah brought me to see Shah Alam, where she & Yul live. We went to the lake garden which also located in the city centre. There was many people around since today is Sunday. I saw the Blue Mosque which is the largest mosque in Southeast Asia. It's amazing! We planned to wait for the sunset but suddenly it was raining heavily so we just went home  :(
So that's all my journey in Malaysia. I'll see you next time in Taiwan. Selamat Jalan! Bye!


Posted Feb 29, 2008, 3:47 pm
It was a national holiday in Taiwan today, 2/28, and the weather was very nice, so we drove to Danshui today. Danshui is a city close to Taipei, located along the Danshui River and close to the Taiwan Street. It's a nice place to visit on a sunny day.

Here are some pictures which we have taken on the way to Danshui. I am staying in Andrea's house  together with Nutmeg, another ToyVoyager, and we made this sightseeing trip together.

First of all we drove to the Fishermen's Wharf. It's a place where you can see a beautiful sunset.

Here am I  in the harbour with the famous "Fishermen's Wharf" bridge

These fishermen looked a bit scary to me....

Is this a beautiful sunset, I think so  B).

Some more pictures which we've made

After that we drove to downtown Danshui. There is a great nightmarket where you can find all kind of traditional snacks and lovely goodies.

This is what we ate tonight:

The left dish is a traditional snack from Danshui. It's tofu, filled with rice noodles. It didn't taste bad at all....

Posted Feb 29, 2008, 3:52 pm

Today I arrived safely in Taiwan. I have traveled from Malayia to Taiwan in a comfortable box and I was full of energy when I left my box.

I wanted to explore Taiwan right away, but that wasn't possible, because my host, Andrea, had to work. She has promised me that we'll go outside on Thursday and until then I'll entertain myself in the garden outside  ;)

Posted Mar 4, 2008, 8:25 am

It's Saturday, time to celebrate the weekend  :D.

The weather was great, so we went to Taipei again to visit the CKS Memorial Hall. This is actually not the name of this place anymore, because lately it has been renamed in Taiwan National Democracy Memorial Hall. Its too complicated to explain why, but it's all part of a political game.

There is a big pond in the park that surrounds the memorial hall and we went there to feed the fish.

Posted Mar 4, 2008, 8:29 am
We also passed an old city gate of Taipei. Nowadays it's located in the center of a big turnaround, close to the presidential building and the CKS Memorial Hall.

The tall building on the background is Taipei Railways Mainstation. It's the second tallest building in Taipei nowadays, because the Taipei 101 is (of course) taller

Posted Mar 4, 2008, 8:37 am
I'm so excited, because I'm going to complete one of my missions today. We are going to visit Taipei Zoo  :D.

Taipei Zoo is located in Mucha, an area in Taipei. The zoo is huge and it's hard to see everything in one day. It's a very nice place to visit on a sunny day and Andrea comes here a lot with her little girl...

The first animals we saw were the koala's. One of the koala's was awake an walking around. He was so cute. He can also climb trees, just like me. I wanted to play with him, but Andrea told me that this wasn't such a good idea..

We also saw flamingo's and a big rat/mouse, because this is the "year of the rat"

This is the entrance to the "rainforest" area.

Posted Mar 4, 2008, 8:43 am
Today I went to the shopping mall. There is only one shopping mall in Nankan, the Tai Mall. It's very crowded on the weekends, but a great place to visit on weekdays during working hours

Posted Mar 4, 2008, 8:46 am
We walked back "home" after we finished our shopping and crossed the community where I am staying now.

Posted Mar 12, 2008, 3:31 pm

Today was my host's birthday.....HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ANDREA :D :D :D!!!!

It was her day and she could decide what to do that day, so we went to Yehliou.

Yehliou is a  a peninsula on the north coast of Taiwan, between Taipei and Keelung. It is famous for the curious shapes carved by sea erosion.

One of the most famous scenic spots is the so-called "Queen's head", and the others are, as named by their shapes, "the fairy's sandal", "bee's hives", etc.

We had to drive for a while and Nutmeg and I enjoyed the scenery while we drank a cup of coffee

We crossed a tunnel, because there are many mountains in Taiwan and we passed a tollstation. There are many tollstations on the main highways in Taiwan

Finally we saw the ocean and the view was breathtaking

We are almost there...

The entrance gate of the park in Chinese style

Yeah....we've made it to the park. Let's go for a walk, let's explore the area

This was the view from the parkinglot looked like I was walking on the moon. These shapes are really weird.

This is the most famous shape of all, the "Queen's Head"


Posted Mar 14, 2008, 2:55 pm
The weather was sunny today, so we took the car and drove to Taipei (again). This time we went to a special park.
This park was in the earlier years the residence of Chiang Kai-Shek.

Chiang Kai-Shek was the first president of the Republic of China (=Taiwan) and he died in 1975. Later they have remodeled the residence where he has lived for a long time into a park that can be visited by everybody. The park is actually the original garden of his residence, so I have accomplished another mission, because this is a famous garden/park in Taiwan

There was a big rose garden with all kind of roses

Look what we've found....Dutch roses. My host is Dutch  ;)

I also stretched my legs, but didn't get too far away since I don't speak any Chinese and I didn't want to get lost

A rosarium in Chinese style

A little boy that was walking around tried to pet me when I was posing for this picture. His daddy told him that I was "just" a toy.....silly daddy  :mad:!

There were so many trees in this garden / park. I was thinking about climbing this tree to complete another mission...

...but decided to climb this tree  :D

I have accomplished another mission  :D :D :D :D :D!!!!!

Furthermore we saw this turtle

We walked "in the jungle"

We saw this little beautiful "unidentified" bird

Passed a Chinese pavilion

And saw this silly face, made of flowers and plants

What a great day I had today and I have accomplished 2 more missions......good night!!!

Posted Mar 28, 2008, 2:43 pm

I went to another scenery place in Taipei today, named Martyrs' Shrine together with my little friend, Nutmeg.

The Martyrs Shrine, is located right next to the Grand Hotel. It was built in 1969 and covers a large area.

Here you can see the famous Grand Hotel in the distance. It's built in Chinese style

The shrine's  architectural style is similar to that of the Taihe Dian Imperial Palace in Beijing. It symbolizes the martyrs' brave spirit.

The Martyrs Shrine is dedicated to approximately 330,000 men who sacrificed their lives to the overthrowing of the Ching Dynasty before the establishment of the Republic of China in 1911, and who fell during the Sino-Japanese war (1938-1945) and the Chinese Civil war (1945-1949). Plates of these brave and loyal martyrs have been inserted into the four walls of the main building in testimony of their heroic deeds.

Worth mentioning are the military police officers who guard the main gate, and who have been rigidly trained to stand like expressionless statues and to remain unmoved by the teasing of crowds.

There is also a  guard-changing ceremony that begins at 9am and is to be held at each hour. We were very lucky at saw one of the ceremonies


Posted Mar 28, 2008, 3:03 pm

Today is also a very important day in Taiwan, because there are presidential elections. We left the Shrine and drove to Andrea's parents-in-law to wait for the final results.

Nutmeg and I wanted to drive, but we weren't allowed to....weird  B).

So we took the best seats on the dashboard behind the front window

This picture was made while we were waiting for the final results. There were 2 candidates, 1 candidate was from the blue camp and the other one was from the green camp. Guess who won........ :).

Posted Apr 5, 2008, 4:14 pm
It is time to pack my bags again. I have stayed in Taiwan for a month now and I'm ready to explore new cities and countries.

First of all I wrote a postcard to my mommy to tell her that I had a great time here

After that I said good-bye to my hosts and buddy Nutmeg who will continue his adventures in Russia

And I am going to AUSTRALIA.....!!!!!

Posted Apr 7, 2008, 12:13 pm
Theodore arrived in Australia today and had an immediate disappointment - being a hungry little chipmunk, he leapt out of his box, eager to find an acorn or ten...but we don't have acorns in Australia!
He was in no mood for photos today...we will get some when he is in a better frame of mind  :cyclops:

PS: Theodore filled up on almonds instead  :p

Posted Apr 26, 2008, 9:42 am
It has been raining for two weeks and I have not been allowed outside...

Posted Apr 26, 2008, 9:43 am
But I have someone to play with. Muki has arrived!

Posted Apr 26, 2008, 9:46 am
We tried to help Nik with her Editing course....

Posted Apr 26, 2008, 9:48 am
But we couldn't make head or tail of it so we decided to draw instead.

Posted Apr 26, 2008, 9:50 am
We learned about kookaburras, a native Australian bird that laughs very loudly!

Posted Apr 26, 2008, 9:51 am
We studied some of Nik's stamps

Posted May 30, 2008, 12:24 pm
I am back home now.  I had lots of fun on the Asia and Oceanic trail, but it's also good to be back home so I can tell my family all about my travels.  I hope I will get to travel some more though.


Posted Sep 29, 2008, 6:02 pm
Wow, I've gotten an invitation to visit Germany!  I am so excited!  It's hard to leave all my friends behind, but I'm sure I will make some new friends overseas!

Before I leave, I have to say goodbye to Prince Charming, Fairchild, and Westgate!

Germany, here I come!

Posted Oct 10, 2008, 8:09 pm
Hi Mummy,
I arrived in Remscheid today. Because my new host Katja was not at home when the postman came, my package was brought to the neighbour house. I think they forgot me for the rest of the day. Now, in the evening, I was brought to my new host.

I was welcomed by Katja, bunny Margarida and bigfoot Hurley.

I was travelling with my diary and a postcard from Miami. It's the first postcard from Miami for Katja. She told me that here in Germany they don't have palm  trees but chestnuts, oaks, beech trees, linden  trees, birch trees, alder and also many conifers. Tomorrow we will take a long walk in the forrest. I'm soooo glad!!!

But now I'm hungry. We found pecans - delicious.

You'll hear more tomorrow.


Posted Oct 11, 2008, 11:25 pm
Hi Mummy,
we took a fantastic long walk today, about 14 kilometres. Katja has bought a book with 20 hiking routes in the environment of Remscheid. She met a friend and we went to Solingen-Unterburg by bus to follow one of the described routes.

Solingen is one of the neighbour towns of Remscheid. Burg is one of the oldest districts of this  town, situated at the river Wupper and famous for Schloss Burg, a medieval castle. I will show you this castle later.

Here you can see some of the old houses in Solingen-Burg. These houses are typical for this region. They are usually half-timbered houses, often partly or completely covered with schist, with green shutters.

This is a statue of the "Kiepenkerl", who is carrying sweet pretzels, a local delicacy, on his back in a pannier.

We had to walk straight uphill then for a while. After a few minutes walking we already were high above the river Wupper.

Here you can see a bothy for walkers.

We reached Sengbachtalsperre, a water reservoir dam. On the next photo I'm looking over the balustrade of the dam.

We are all sitting on the dam here, enjoying the midday sun.

We walked along the dam for a while. Can see you me on the next photo? (You cannot see me, but my shade).

Here I had a rest with a fir cone.

Now you can see more of the dam.

It was a wonderful trip for a chipmunk: I climbed up trees ...

... collected acorns ...

... I had a shower in the falling leafes ...

We left the forrest here and walked through a district with farms.

I met goats here, one of them was very curious and came to the fence to snuffle at me.

We also came by a sawmill. Here you can see many piled trunks.

Our next destination was Schloss Burg. We could see it while we walked towards it.

Doesn't it look georgeous? The castle was built in early 12th century on a mountain over the river Wupper. It was enlarged later, sometimes destroyed in wars and also fires. It was reconstructed in 1925 A.D.

This is the gate, facing the street.

We walked through the inner courtyards and reached the main part of the castle ground. You can find some shops here where different arts and crafts are sold.

This equorial monument is showing Count Engelbert II vom Berg, one of the early souvereign of this region.

We walked downhill then. Here you can see a chair lift crossing the lane. We also saw many beautiful old houses.

When we reached the starting point we had coffee and wafers with cream in a cafe.

We also bought some Burger Pretzels here. We will eat them tomorrow. After 14 kilometres walking I only want to sleep.

If you would like to see some more photos of the beautiful forrests you can have a look here.



Posted Oct 12, 2008, 6:58 pm
Hi Mummy,
we tasted the pretzels that we have bought yesterday. They are really good. Katja has a lot of funny pets which look similar to me but my tail is more wispy than theirs. They can climb almost as good as me but they are not allowed to climb up trees because they have to stay at home. So they climb up Katja's trouser legs. These funny little animals also like the pretzels.



Posted Oct 17, 2008, 3:39 pm
Hello Mummy,

we  have a new guest here since yesterday. It's Weasley. He says that his home is West Virginia but he looks like coming from outer space. He also behaves so ....

Katja asked us to help her. It was our job to weigh the ingredients but I'm sure we did understand something wrong  :D

At least we were ready to  help her. For our delicious apple cake you need the following ingredients:

For the dough:
125 g butter
125 g sugar
1 vanilla sugar
3 eggs
200 g flour
3 tsp baking powder
3 soup spoons cream
50 ml light rum
4 apples, peeled and cut into quarters

For the topping:
200 g sour cream
75 g sugar
2 eggs
1 p vanilla sauce powder

Margarida asked me if I wanted to be her accomplice. She was planning to tease Weasley a little bit to discover if he had a lidden lightsaber for something like that.

Weasley did not have a lightsaber or anything but he was afraid.

We had to apologize. (Margarida is a really sassy bunny - she is full of mischief).

Weasley was playing with the flour sifter - he used it as a helmet and felt like an astronaut.

Now Katja needed the flour sifter.

When the dough is ready you have to fill it into your cake tin and put the apple quarters onto it.

The cake has to stay in the oven for 12 minutes.

The cake topping had to be made and Katja was searching for the beaters. Weasley was playing with them - they looked like antennas.

Then you take it out of the oven and pour the cake topping, containing sour cream, sugar, eggs and sauce powder, over the surface. Then it goes back into the oven for another 50 minutes.

If the cake is looking like this and is tasting really good everything is fine.


Posted Oct 18, 2008, 9:31 pm
Hi Mummy,

Venlo is situated close to the German border. Many peple from Germany like going shopping in Venlo because you can get some food much cheaper there than in Germany, due to lower taxes. Venlo's history goes back to Roman times. It developed into an important trade post on the river Meuse.

Look, here we are with BlackCat's guests.

There were also Odette and Titch, they did not want to come out of BlackCats bag - they were a little bit shy.

This is the post office, decorated with the national coat of arms of the Netherlands.

We went through the old town then.

This is the town hall.

We went to the market then.

We took a walk to the river Meuse then. We wrote a postcard to another ToyVoyagers host. We hope she will like the card.

Back in the old town ... In the Netherlands many peple use bikes to get around. The land is completely flat and they have cycle tracks on almost every road.

A fountain in the old town ...

We saw this store for home decoration.

There was a store with a soap bubbles machine at the front door. I had a lot of fun when I tried to catch the bubbles.

Then it was already time to go back to the station. In Wuppertal we left the train and went home by bus.


Posted Oct 21, 2008, 7:14 pm
Hi Mummy,
today the weather was still fantastic and we took another long walk in the forrest.

We started our trip in Remscheid-Hasten, one of the oldest districts of Remscheid. Soon we reached the border of the muncipal area.

I love climbing, even when it is only a hoarding.

We planned to walk to Wuppertal-Cronenberg. Wuppertal is the neighbour town of Remscheid. To get there we had to cross a valley and walk up steep uphill through the forrest.

We rested on a bench and enjoyed the sun.

The next rest took place on a barrier.

Then I was climbing up and down some trees.

We walked through a small hamlet, containing about six old houses.

This little house is even situated alone in the middle of the forrest, like a whitchhouse in a fairy tale.

There was a bridge across a creek. If you looked to the ground you could see the water flowing.

Later we had to cross the same creek, this time there was no bridge.We had to climb and jump over stones.

Posted Oct 21, 2008, 7:19 pm
Hi Mummy,
when I woke up in the morning I was i a bad temper soon. Outside it was raining like hell. No more sunshine, no walk in the forrest today.

Instead we went with Katja to her working place. She is working in a law firm. There is my photo on her monitor!

Then we went to her colleage to keep her from working too much.


Posted Oct 22, 2008, 9:45 am
When we reached Wuppertal-Cronenberg, we saw many nice old houses and also an old church, built in 1767 A.D.

It was already getting dark when we went home. We were really tired afterwards. We all had a hot tea and fell asleep soon.



Posted Oct 30, 2008, 1:34 pm
Hi Mummy,

today we took a walk along the "Route of Tools", a lane for pedestrians and cyclers which was built on a closed railway track.

Before let me show you where I live at the moment. Our flat is in the attic storey of one of those nice old houses, they are built in the early 1900s.

We are on our way to the route of tools now.

The route of tools is a lane for pedestrians and cyclists, built on a closed railway track. It is about 5 km long and you can walk throuth the town without getting into much contact with traffic. You can find distance data on the ground, for example to a museum and the next district.

Here is one of the few points where you have to cross a road.

We rested on a bench that was made of a giant srew clamp.

Later we took a short walk through the forrest. It was already getting dark so we did not make many photos.

(Katja bought a lot of walnuts on the farmer's market today. I'm already planning a walnut-raid in the night.)



Posted Nov 3, 2008, 1:28 pm
Hi Mummy,
I fitched a lot of walnuts today.


Posted Nov 4, 2008, 1:26 pm
Hi Mummy,
Katja is knitting socks. At least she believes it will be a sock some day. It's looking like .... I don't know .... it certainly does not look like a sock!!!


Posted Nov 10, 2008, 12:59 pm
Hi Mummy,
Katja's colleague Elke took me with her for a short trip to Bavaria. Elke and her husband are going to visit relatives there.

I'll be back in a week.


Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:19 pm
Hello Mummy,
I am at Elke's home now. I am so anxious to  travel to Southern Germany!

I have a look at the autumn home decoration.


Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:22 pm
Hi Mummy,
I'm still in Remscheid. I'm considerung how to get to these packed sweets. I can see nuts inside!


Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:25 pm
Hi Mummy,
I enjoy the view out of the winter garden. It really looks good here in the outskirts of Remscheid.

Elke told me that I will have to get up early tomorrow because we will start our journey then.

I'm so anxious to visit Southern Germany.


Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:37 pm
Hi Mummy,
we got up early and now we are travelling!

I'm sitting on the dashboard and having control over tempo and tankfull.

Our first stop - the driver is thirsty and the car is also.

I had pumpkin seeds as refreshment.


Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:41 pm
I have to look which exit we have to drive to get to Durmersheim.

Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:51 pm
We reached Karlsruhe in Baden-Wuerttemberg without any problems and took a walk there.

Here I am in front of the Federal Court of Justice, the top court in Germany.

Here I am on my way to the Federal Constitutional Court.

Me and the federal eagle.

This is the mint where parts of German mintage are made.

We had to drive to Durmersheim then to visit relatives.


Posted Nov 18, 2008, 11:57 pm
This funny tree is pricking really funnily.

We made an evening walk under the full moon.

I'm soooo tired now ....


Posted Nov 19, 2008, 12:01 am
Hi Mummy,
today we visit Rastatt.

This is the beautiful castle of Rastatt.

I played hide and seek in this tree bark.


Posted Nov 19, 2008, 12:05 am
Hi Mummy,
we are in Bavaria now. When I look out of the window of the guesthouse I can see Troestau.

We had to leave then to visit more relatives.


Posted Nov 19, 2008, 12:10 am
We are still driving on the motorway. Which exit should we take? This one ...

or this one?


Posted Nov 19, 2008, 12:26 am
Whereto now?

Selb is a town in the district of Wunsiedel, in Upper Franconia, Bavaria, Germany. It is situated in the Fichtelgebirge, close to the border of the Czech Republic.

In the middle of 19th century Selb became famous for its porcellain producing factrories.

Now I will show you a little bit of Selb.

Selb - city of porcellain

Here the company Hutschenreuther has an industrial selling.

The famous onion pattern ...

Wild animals like me ...

I don't behave like a bull in a china shop :D

Goodbye for today

Posted Nov 19, 2008, 1:59 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we went to Weissenstaedter See, a beautiful lake in Weissenstaedt, about 25 km apart from Selb. The lake is fed by the river Eger.

It was really cold - yes, I am sitting on ice!

Later I played with this "wildcat", she was very friendly.

A christmas market will be held between these ancient walls - it's look lifted our spirit.

By the way, our guesthouse was located close to a golf court.

The guesthouse is called "Waldesruh", this word has got something to do with forrest and calmness, there does not exist any reasonable translation. Guesthouses and cemetaries are sometimes called like this.

I tried to get into contact with this guy, but he did not answer. What happened to him?

That was all from my journey to Bavaria. I really enjoyed the journey. Katja and I bought a bottle of sparkling wine for Elke to say thank you to her.


Posted Nov 22, 2008, 10:32 am
Hi Mummy,
it's snowing here!

It already started yesterday with a bad storm which destroyed some of the booths on the christmas market that will be opened next week. It was getting cold and colder and suddly the falling rain turned into snow. When Katja came home in the early evening she brought a new ToyVoyager with her, SaruMaru from Florida had to be picked up at the post office.

Today we all took a look out of the kitchen window.

I hope we will go out later!


Posted Nov 22, 2008, 4:55 pm
Hi Mummy,
in the afternoon we took a walk to the muncipal park. The sun was shining and everything looked beautiful.

First we had a look at the pond with ducks and turtles.

Then we walked through the park.

This is the observatory, located at one of the entrances to the muncipal park.

We rested on a bench, enjoying the sun.

I hope that more snow will fall during the night.


Posted Nov 29, 2008, 5:23 pm
Hi Mummy,

today I accompanied Katja when she went shopping to the farmer's market, SaruMaru also went with us.

Usually the farmer's market is taking place in front of the town hall. Now the christmas market is there, so the farmer's market had to move to a space close to the muncipal park.

We bought some vegetables here.

On the way back we came along a playground. There were no kids playing because it was quite cold outside.

I can see the tower of this church from our living room window.

The next photos were take in the vicinity of my current home. Most of these houses were built in the late 1800s or early 1900s.

The house in the background with trees in front of it is a grammar school.

hen we came home we had to unpack the vegetables that we bought on the market.

With today's mail a ToyVoyager arrived - Thiele, a cute little pelican.

A friend called and asked if Katja wanted to take a walk with her. Of course she wanted because the weather was really good today.

Thele, Moley and Titch stayed at home, SaruMaru and I went with Katja.

Posted Nov 29, 2008, 5:28 pm
We went to Hasten, one of the oldest districts of Remscheid. Here you can see many houses which are typical for this region. They are often covered with schist and have green shutters, like the house on the next photo. They were usually built in 19th century.

I also liked this house.

We walked back home along the route of tools.


Posted Dec 1, 2008, 10:54 pm
Hi Mummy,
I'm celebrating my birthday!

We had cake in the afternoon and in the evening we had something much better: fruit in rum.

Fruit in rum is called "Rumtopf" in Germany. Many people prepare it during summer. You take a large ceramic pot and put fresh fruit into it. The fruits have to be washed, peeled and cut into pieces if they are larger fruits. You usually start with strawberries, then cherries, peaches, apricots, plums .... everything you like. For each portion of fruit you also take rock candy (for 500 g fruit you take 500 g sugar), than you fill in as much rum (rum with 54% alcohol content) until  the fruits are covered completely. Every time you like you fill in the next fruits, rock candy and rum.

In early winter you can taste the Rumtopf. It really tastes delicious! SaruMaru was eager to taste it.

We had a glass of rum from the Rumtopf and some fruits. We had cherries, kiwi, peach, plum and a strawberry.

Moley, SaruMaru, Titch and Thiele were celebrating with me.

I'm afraid we all will have a bad hangover tomorrow ...



Posted Dec 7, 2008, 5:32 pm
Hi Mummy,
it has snowed again! We went to the attic and had a look out of the roof light. The sky is fully of heavy clouds.

When Katja had to shovel snow we were sitting in front of the house, watching her.

We went into town later. We have to walk only a few minutes to reach the town centre.

Something must have happened on the other side of the street. Some fire engines were standing there.

This is the entrance to the shopping street. The forceps are a symbol for the local tool industry.

When it was already dark we went to the christmas market. We bought a little present for one host who posted her wishlist here.


Posted Dec 7, 2008, 5:35 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we visited a christmas market in Cologne, in  Stadtgarten (a park area). You could buy nice things there.

We had raclette to eat. Raclette is melted cheese, served over boiled potatoes or rye bread with black pepper. This delicacy comes from France. The lady on the photo is scraping pieces from the hot cheese.

One of the town's landmarks is the telecommunication tower which was built in 1981. It's height is 266 m.

We did not visit the part of Colone where Cologne cathedral is located.


Posted Dec 13, 2008, 7:46 pm
Hi Mummy,

we baked christmas cookies today! We made nut macaroons.

You need
100 g ground hazelnuts
250 g flour
200 g butter
125 g sugar
about 60 hazelnuts

First we had to mix ground nuts and flour. Then we had to stirr the butter foamily and add sugar. Flour and nut mix had to be worked into butter and sugar.

From the dough we had to made small balls. Those were put onto a baking tray. As a last step we had to place a nut into the middle of every little dough ball.

The cookies had to bake for about 20 minutes.

It's done! The cookies are delicious. (Of course they are - I love everything that is made with nuts)


Posted Dec 14, 2008, 8:42 pm
Hi Mummy,
we had fantastic weather today. We already had planned a trip to the most interesting touristic highlights of this region. We wanted to visit Muengsten Bridge and Schloss Burg. I visited Schloss Burg already in October, but I loved it.

Here you can see the river Wupper which marks the border between the towns Remscheid and Solingen. In the background you can see a lookout pavillion. Later we came to another one similar to this one.

We reached Muengsten Bridge, the  highest railway bridge in Germany. It was completed in March 1897. It is 107 meters high and 465 meters long. It was built with about 5.000 tons of steel (5.000.000 kg). The bridge is overstretching the valley of the river Wupper. A few years ago a theme park was established. There are beautiful playgrounds for children, takeaways, lawns for relaxing, a miniature golf and souvenir shops. Katja told me that every year in summer a big festival is held underneath the bridge with fireworks.

We found a plate with some facts about Muengsten Bridge.

From here we walked to Schloss Burg. Along the path you can find artworks. On the surface of this table shaped rock  these impressions of hands are engraved. On other rocks poems are engraved or riddles. Most of them are not so easy to discover because they are partly covered with leafes and dirt from autumn and winter.

We had to cross the river Wupper here.

Posted Dec 14, 2008, 8:51 pm
We walked along an old cemetary. It was built here in 1732. The tombstones were all made of a special sort of sandstone in a similar style.

From here we saw Schloss Burg for the first time, located on the hill above the river Wupper.

I saw this beautifully decorated house.

Solingen-Unterburg is located at the river Wupper. Here you can see the chair lift which goes uphill to Schloss Burg. We were not lazy and walked there through the forrest.

We than reached the lookout pavilion. From here you have a good view across the valley with the river Wupper and Unterburg.

We also visited Schloss Burg. Today we went into the castle courtyard where the medieval christmas market is taking place.

Katja and her friends had a coffe here. They also had a punch made of fruit wine before. SaruMaru was glad about that and tasted the punch immediately.

We had a little rest here.

We than had to walk back to the car for at least another hour. We reached the parking lot just in time before it was getting too dark outside.

We are all tired now.


Posted Dec 17, 2008, 7:19 pm
Hi Mummy,
I want to show you my new furry friends today. They are really kind and hoggish. They always try to steal my pecan nuts.

This is Jordan.

Here are Karla and Jordan. Karla is one of the youngest pet rats and the most curious one.

The rats have a really funny furniture in their large cage. This is a trouser leg which is filled with scrap of paper. The rats love to hide in it.


Posted Dec 23, 2008, 9:41 pm
Hi Mummy,
today we helped Katja to decorate the christmas tree. Yesterday her son went with his uncle to a farm where you can cut down your christmas tree. He found a really nice little spruce.

First we had to attach the christmas lights. It's not as easy as it seems.

Hanging up the christmas  tree ornaments was more fun.

I had to be careful because the ornaments are made of glass.

I like our christmas tree.

In Germany we are celebrating christmas eve. Katja invited her family. Her parents, her sister with her husband and her son and Katja's aunt will come.

I'm so exited!


Posted Dec 26, 2008, 5:38 pm
Hi Mummy,
it's christmas eve today. Most people in Germany are celebrating christmas today and the following two days.

Here we were sitting with the christmas presents, watching over them.

In the afternoon we had coffee and self made cookies.

Later we were sitting next to the christmas tree. Katja put all the christmas cards onto the dresser.

For dinner we had a fantastic meal: Savoy cabbage with several sorts of fish and pasta. Katja's daughter had cooked the whole meal on her own.

After dinner the presents were changed. What an exciting day!


Posted Dec 26, 2008, 6:23 pm
Hi Mummy,

after eating too many sweets during the last days we decided to take a long walk today. Katja's daughter had to go to work, her son had planned to visit his Dad and Grandmother so nobody was missing her. The sun was shining although it was really cold. Outside everything was covered with hoar frost.

We met Katja's friend Erika, she also likes to take walks through the forrests and surroundings of Remscheid. To meet Erika we had to walk to the district Hasten, one of the oldest districts of Remscheid. We walked through the muncipal park to get there. From here we already could see Hasten.

In Hasten you can see many old houses.

This is the church of Hasten.

We than walked to Katja's friend to pick her up.

From here we left the streets and walked into a woodland area.

This is one of the typical houses.

Here you can find grazing land and cropland.

Later we had a rest on a tree trunk.

This is also one of the outskirts. Only here you can see overhead lines, usually you have underground cables.

We walked for about three and a  half hour. We had a last rest when the sun already began to go down.

We went home by bus. It was already dark when we reached our house. It was a fantastic trip, I love all the different trees here.


Posted Dec 30, 2008, 7:24 pm
Hi Mummy,
the weather is fantastic here. It is cold and the sun in shining. The sky is as blue as in Florida. So Katja took us out in her lunch break when she had to do some shopping.

You can see the city arms here. Did I show it to you before? I don't know, so here it is.

This route is about 5 km long and is leading from the central train station to the district Hasten. Today we started somewhere in the middle of the route and walked towards the train station.

On the backside of a supermarket replications of  pictures of a local artist who died in 1988 are installed.

You can also see abandonded factory buildings.

These buildings are part of the former slaughterhouse. This complex is under preservation order. Nowadays these buildings are used by different companies.

Here are more signs showing names and company logos of sponsors.

We reached the central railway station. Oh dear, the whole railway station is a complete building site. You can see it in the background of the following photo.

I like the St. Andrews cross.

We went shopping then. We even bought some firework. We are invited by Katja's sister-in-law to celebrate New Year's Eve.

Happy New Year, Mummy!


Posted Jan 1, 2009, 7:37 pm
Hi Mummy,
we were invited to spend New Year's Eve at the home of Katja's sister-in-law and her family. We went there at dinner time.

We had raclette. In Germany raclette usually is not made only with cheese and potatoes but also with several sorts of vegetables like sweet pepper, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, sweet cornand sometimes meat or shrimps  which can be boiled on the of the raclette grill. We also had bread, potatoes and several salads.

You take your little pan, fill it with vegetables and put chesse over it. Then you put it into the raclette grill and it will be scalloped. It's delicious!

After dinner we played a card game whose rules are similar to Uno. We had a lot of fun.

Shortly before 12:00 pm.

                Happy New Year!

At midnight we toasted with sparkling wine and than we went outside to launch our fireworks.

We went home at 03:00 am.


Posted Jan 3, 2009, 10:16 pm
Hi Mummy,
although Katja still has a bad cold we took a walk today. The sun was shining but it was really cold. So we went into town because Katja had to exchange something that she had bought. Here she showed us one of the churches in the town centre. In the foreground you can see a funny fountain.

We walked along the route of tools again. We saw that trees must have grown through one of the  bordering walls once. They were cut off.

Back home we were sitting in the kitchen window, looking to the town centre. In the background you can see the water tower and the town hall. Look how beautiful the red sunlight looked.


Posted Jan 6, 2009, 6:37 pm
Hi Mummy,

we went into the town centre with Katja today. It is really cold here, about -9°C. Katja told us that it hasn't been so cold for at least 15 years. It also snowed on Sunday, but not too much.

After work we took the first photos out of the office window, you can see part of the town hall, the shopping mall and the market place. The skating rink will be removed this week.

We had to walk only a few steps to reach the shopping mall. We took a few pictures here.

Again the town hall.

We went home then. The next photo is taken in the vicinity of my current home, in the crossroad.

Back home we went to the attic to have a look out of the roof light at the snowy roofs of the neighbour houses. You can also see the water tower and the town hall's tower. The moon is also visible.

We also took a look out of the living room window, at the front side of the house.

When Katja's daughter returned from work we took a walk to the muncipal park. It is only a few minutes to walk from here to get there. This time the duck pond is frozen up.

In the background you can see the outskirts of Remscheid and Wuppertal, the neighbour town.

We enjoyed the last sunrays on a bench.

Then suddenly I heard something plopping onto our bench ...

There was sitting a chipmunk girl!

She followed us from now on.

She climbed onto a tree when I did ...

... she climbed through this pile of tree trunks when I did ... ...

... and she followed me to play in the snow.

She even kissed me on my nose.

Then she disappeared into the forrest. Oh dear, I fell in love, I believe. I hope we will visit the muncipal park again tomorrow.


Posted Jan 11, 2009, 9:13 pm
Hi Mummy,
the weather is still fantastic here, so we took a walk in the outskirts of the neighbour town Solingen.

We parked the car in Solingen-Unterburg and walked along the river Wupper. Everything is snowy and looks beautiful.

On the next photo you can see a pump which was used at Sengbach dam, a drinking water dam in the vicinity,

We saw an old building with a water wheel.

We reached the hamlet Balkhausen. Here we saw nice old houses.

We walked into woodland again and came along farmland.

Our path followed the river Wupper, we reached a point which is called Wupperhof.

We walked further and reached the parts of the town which are at the border to Leichlingen, another town which is adjoining to Solingen.

Here we saw old industrial buildings, one of them is now a tenement.

Here we rested on the axis of a large water wheel or another ancient machine for a while. This Alsation dog accompanied us.

Here we had the possibility to cross the river Wupper and walk back to the car.

This is our last picture, we were sitting at the banks of the river Wupper and had wet bums afterwards. But this beautiful photo was worth it.

Later in the evening, back home, Katja showed us in Google Earth where we had walked. We saw that we walked about 17 or 18 km.



Posted Jan 11, 2009, 9:36 pm
Hi Mummy,
in the evening we helped Katja to make snowballs. No, not outside but in the kitchen.

Katja had promised her sister-in-law to bake a cake for her. She was celebrating her birthday a few days ago and will need two cakes tomorrow to celebrate her birthday at her working place in a elementary school.

So Katja decided to bake snowballs.

But how can you bake snowballs?

By the way, two new ToyVoyagers, Germania and Tiger Lilly, also helped to make snowballs. Germania and Tiger Lilly will start their journey soon.

First you have to bake a sponge cake, or you could buy one.

Then you prepare a cream containing curd cheese, creme fraiche, whipped cream, some sugar and amaretto. Here are the ingredients:

250 g curd cheese
150 g creme fraiche
125 ml amaretto
50 g sugar
1 package vanilla sugar
400 ml whipped cream
2 packets Sahnesteif (a white powder which keeps the whipped creme tight)
200 g desiccated coconut

First you mix curd cheese, creme fraiche, sugar and amaretto. Then you have to make whipped cream and stir it to the other ingredients.

Now you have to rip the sponge cake into small pieces. Put the crumbs into the prepared cream and mingle both.

Put the desiccated coconut into a larger box. Then you have to form little balls with wet hands and to roll them into coconut.

We put the snowballs into paper muffin cups. Ready!

They are delicious!


Posted Jan 21, 2009, 5:25 pm
Hi Mummy,

a new ToyVoyager arrived today. It's Fluffytail, a squirrel.

We took a walk to the  muncipal park in the afternoon. We came along the playground, in the background you can see one of the churches in the town centre.

Here we are in the muncipal park. The duck pond is still covered with ice, while the snow already melted away. The signs is showing something really typical for Germany: A prohibition sign. It says that you are not allowed to enter the frozen surface.

Here you can see more of the park.

This is a very special thing: A garden for blind people. All descriptions are made in braille and the flowers are planted at a convenient height. In summer they have flowers, herbs, sounds, stones and more.

This is the memorial for the victims of several wars.

I met the sweet chipmunk girl here a few weeks ago.

I want to meet her again, so I was looking for her. Elston and Fluffytail helped me, but they did not see her. I also did not find her. I'm a little bit sad. Katja tried to comfort me. She said that I can go the muncipal park as often as I like to look for the chipmunk girl.

We left the muncipal park, walked downhill and walked back home along the Route of Tools. Here we were back on  the street. These slate covered houses with green shutters are typical for this region, they are called "Bergische Häuser".

This steep street is leading back to the muncipal park. You have to be in a good shape to take walks here.


Posted Jan 27, 2009, 8:19 am
Hello Mummy,
we had delicious fruits in the evening. Katja said we all should lose some weight, so we had fruits instead of a real dinner.

We had banana, a golden kiwi, an apple, physalis and honeydew melon.

We helped to cut all fruits into pieces.

We watched "Hundkatzemaus" on TV. That's a tv show about pets. In English the name would be "dogcatmouse". You can learn a lot about pets. I had also some peanuts, I shared them with Fluffytail, the squirrel.

We enjoyed it.


Posted Jan 31, 2009, 9:18 am
Hi Mummy,
we took a walk in one of the many forrests today. We walked to a completely different directioin today.

In a small park in front of the police station I saw this pillar with the engraved coat of arms of Remscheid.

This is the view from the town centre to the south of Remscheid.

We walked along the industrial ruin of a former brewery, Kipper Brauerei.  Here you can see how it looked like before the buildings were demolished.

We rested a little bit on one of the remaining walls.

From here we walked into the forrest.

This sign says that this forrest is a nature reserve.

A creek is running through the forrest here. It is carrying a lot of water now because we had lots of rain this week.

Our last break on a tree trunk ...

No, it wasn't our last break, but at the least the last one in the forrest. The two ladies were hungry and had to go to .... I think you know where they had to go after walking two hours through the cold.

Our favourite break  :D

From here we got home by bus.


Posted Jan 31, 2009, 9:55 am
Hi Mummy,
today we visited Düsseldorf, the capital city of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. The city is situated on the River Rhine and is renowned for its many events and also for its fashion and trade fairs.

We went there by train and walked to the town centre.

We saw this interesting pyramide, a fountain which is put out of service in winter,

this is a church, Johannekirche.

This is an equestrian sculture showing Emperor Wilhelm I, one of the former German Emperors, who lived from 1797 until 1888 A.D.

We reached Königsalle, the most famous shopping street here. They have stores of the world famous designers here. Königsallee is called "KÖ" here.

The small river Duessel is running through the town.

From here we walked to Altstadt (old town). Here you can see the town hall.

From here it is not far to river Rhine.

This is the Landtag of the state North Rhine-Westphalia, the provincial government, also situated at the river Rhine.

Here you can see an information board regarding to Rhine tower.

In Germany they definitely have too many traffic signs, even on footways.

Now you can see Rhine Tower.

It was already getting dark than. The river lookes so beautiful with the sun going down that we made more pictures.

Sunset in the haven.

We walked along the backside of the Landtag, here a library is situated.

When we returned to Altstadt all the pubs at the waterfront were illuminated.

Katja and her friend hat a few delicious beers later and an even more delicious mojito.


Posted Jan 31, 2009, 5:35 pm
Hi Mummy,
today Katja asked who wanted to take a walk. Only Theodore and I wanted, Elston's and Kelly's feet were still hurting. They are not used to walk so long. I'm sure they will get used to when  they stay here for a month.

Katja and her friend Birgit wanted to walk from Remscheid-Hasten to Wuppertal, to one of the outskirts that's close to Remscheid.

This is Haus Cleff in Remscheid Hasten. A museum showing domestic culture of the last centuries is situated here. The house is a beautiful patrician villa built in 1778 A.D.

Here you can see more very old buildings in an area called Steffenshammer.

This is a pond which belonged to a smithy. In the past they were run by a water wheel. The pond is still frozen.

We than walked uphill where you can often find farmland.


Posted Feb 6, 2009, 4:58 pm
Hi Mummy,
this week two more ToyVoyagers arrived, Womat and Louis the rat.

Katja brought delicious cookies for us, they are called Nuss-Schiffchen (nut boats).

Fluffytail and I pinched the nuts.


Posted Feb 14, 2009, 10:01 am
Hi Mummy,

today a cute little teddy bear from Hungary, Peti, arrived with Harold from Australia.

Elston will leave tomorrow so he had planned to bake lamingtons, the "Australian national cake" for us as his farewell dinner.

The other two ToyVoyagers from Australia helped hin. The kitchen was a mess afterwards, but they represented delicious lamingtons.

Lamingtons are squares of sponge cake, dipped into chocolate icing and covered with dessicated coconut.

While the sponge cake had to cool down for further treatment Katja offered us a glass of sparkling wine, also very delicious.

I found some nuts and raisins, I enjoyed them with Fluffytail.
Have a look!


Posted Feb 16, 2009, 5:08 pm
Hi Mummy,
we took a walk today to the district Hasten and to the outskirts of Remscheid. Hasten is one of the oldest districts of the town, dwellings and mostly old factories close together. This district was not destroyed in World War II, so most of the old houses remained.

Hasten is surrounded by woodland.

We than went to pick up Katja's friend who wanted to walk with us. She is living in a district close to Hasten, it is called Rath, a housing area with mostly one-family-homes and terraced houses. From here you can see Hasten again, in the background.

From here we went into the forrest. First we had to cross a road in the valley, than we had to walk uphill again.

Katja told us that in summer many horses are grazing on these pastures. In the background you can see the hill with the town centre, unmistable the silhouette with the water tower and the tower of the town hall.

We were walking along the border of the neighbour town Wuppertal. Hidden in the forrest are a few more small hamlets like this.

We had so much fun in the snow!

On the way back it started to snow again. Can you see it?

Back home we all had to sit on the heating because our bums were wet :D



Posted Feb 19, 2009, 3:04 pm
Hi Mummy,
Katja told me that I am "Voyager of the week". I'm so happy and proud!

We thought that this was cause for having a party.

We went shopping some delicious things like cheese, olives and nachos with cheese dip.

In the evening the party started.

My friends even made a medal for me.

Have a look at our delicious food!^

We were even allowed to drink a little bit beer.

We had a lot of fun until late evening.


Posted Mar 7, 2009, 7:16 pm
Hi Mummy,
I went to the muncipal park with Katja and lion Decker today. I'm felling frisky and I hoped to see ... *blush*

I was climbing through those climing aids in the rose garden. Katja told me that there would be roses blooming in spring and summer.

Suddenly she was there!

We had a lot of fun when we climbed through bushes and trees.

And than ....

we disappeared for a while.

We are very happy.

By the way, her name is Claire.

Katja said she hopes that I won't have to pay alimony soon.


Posted Mar 17, 2009, 9:32 pm
Hi Mummy,

today we took a walk around Eschbachtalsperre, which is Germany's oldest drinking water dam. It was built since 1889 A.D. and was opened in 1891 A.D.

There are several walking paths around the dam and in the vicinity of the dam. We chose one which was about 8,5 km long, only a short walk because of the bad weather.

We started at the dam and walked than into the forrest.

Motorway A1 is close to the dam. Here you can see the motorway service area.

We were sitting comfortably in the fresh moss.

A part of the forrest was overflooded, propably by lots of rain we had last week. Can you see the dark spots in the foreground? It is frog spawn. Large parts of the tarn were full of it.

Our path leaded us away from the dam into the hinterland. Here we saw farms.

We saw an interesting weather vane on a roof.

Finally we returned to the dam.

We reached the masonry dam. In the background you can see a hotel.

Here you can read some informations about the dam, about the hold capacity, about height and lenght of the capstone.

This memorial is dedicated to the architect of the dam, Robert Boeker.

We took a last group photo, sitting on the masonry dam.

Although the weather was bad we had a lot of fun.



Posted Mar 23, 2009, 6:00 pm
Hi Mummy,
we'll travel to Munich tomorrow. I'm so excited!


Posted Mar 23, 2009, 6:04 pm
Hi Mummy,
we are at the airport now. Our flight to Munich will start at 10:00 a.m.


Posted Mar 23, 2009, 6:11 pm
Hi Mummy,
we arrived in Munich soon. We went to our hotel and than immediately into town.

Here we are at Karlsplatz, also called Stachus.

Here you can see me at Promenadenplatz. In the background you can see one of the most exlusive hotels in Munich, hotel Bayerischer Hof.

This is Wittelsbacherplatz. The statue is showing elector Maximilian I, who lived from 1571 till 1651 A.D.

We walked through the old town and reached Odeonsplatz. This church, Theatinerkirche, is situated here.

Katja wanted to meet another host of ToyVoyagers here, Pandamao, in the Englischen Garten. We still had some time and so Katja showed us Hofgarten.

The garden was built by Maximilian I, whose statue I already showed you. In the middle of the garden you can see Dianatempel, a pavilion dedicated to goddess Diana.

Here you can see the inside of the temple.

Facing the Hofgarten on the east side is the Bavarian Staatskanzlei ("State Chancellery"), housed in the former Army Museum. The glass wings were added to the orginal building.

From here it'n not far to the Englischen Garten.

Here we are!

With an area of 3.7 km² the Englischer Garten is one of the world's largest urban public parks. In the background you can see  Monopteros, a greek style temple built in 1836 A.D.

There are many creeks in the Englischen Garten.

We are now in the famous beer garden at the Chinese tower.

Almost no visitors were here but we had a delicious beer and pretzel although.

Katja met Pandamao here. Harold Giraffe and Womat went with Pandamao, Berkeley and Bruni Lila came with us now.


Posted Mar 23, 2009, 6:18 pm
Hi Mummy,

on our second day here we planned to walk through the old town and than visit Westpark.

We started at Sendlinger Tor, which is a city gate at the southern extremity of the historic old town area of Munich.

From here we walked along Sedlinger Straße to do some shoppings.

Of course we also visited Marienplatz with the famous new town hall.

On the next photo you can see the Mariensäule (Marian column) and also the towers of the Frauenkirche (Cathedral of our blessed lady).

From here we went to Westpark by metro.

Westpark is a large urban public park in Munich. It was completed in 1983. It hosted the fourth International Garden Show (IGA 83) that same year.

They have an area here which is called Little Asia which consists of a Chinese garden, a Japanese garden, a Thai sala and a pagoda.

Unfortunately the part with the Chinese garden was closed for visitors at the moment.

So let me show you the Japanese garden.

This is the Thai sala.

We took a long walk in the park and went back to the town centre than.

This is Karolinenplatz, an important intersection here.

From here we walked to Königsplatz. The square is framed with the "Ionic" Glyptothek and the "Doric" Propylaea (Propyläen) and the "Corinthian" State Museum of Classical Art.

That's enough for today, my little feet are aching.


Posted Mar 23, 2009, 6:21 pm
Hi Mummy,
Katja had to join a meeting today, she returned to our hotel in the late afternoon.

In the afternoon we took a walk through the old town and along the river Isar.

This is Isartor, also a historic city gate.


Posted Mar 23, 2009, 6:28 pm
Hi Mummy,
we visited Tierpark Hellabrunn today.

We saw lots of interesting animals. Have a look at those giant turtles!

We also watched a show with raptors. They showed a barn owl, a peregrine falcon and a golden eagle.

The girl is showing the peregrine falcon here.

They let the birds fly and they came back after performing how to kill their prey.

This is the golden eagle.

We had to leave to zoo than to get back to the airport.

Here we are on our way back home.

I had a fantastic time in Munich!


Posted Mar 29, 2009, 5:32 pm
Hi Mummy,

we had very bad weather here this week. It was raining like hell and on Thursday we even had snow. But it melted away within the next day.

Today the sun came out, but only for a few minutes. We went out immediately to see if there are any signs that spring is coming.

We decided to walk to the municipal park.

We saw the first signs that spring certainly is coming in front of Katja's friend's house.

We found more signs in the park, have a look at this rhododendron.

The weather worsened again, it started to rain once more.

We are pacified now, it seems that spring will be here soon.


Posted Mar 30, 2009, 9:37 pm
Hi Mummy,

today we had the first sunshine day here since at least half a month. Katja took us to her working place firm to show us a little bit more of the town centre after work.

First I'm going to show you the town hall, with a blue background today :D

These giant forceps are marking the entrance of the shopping street. They are meant as a symbol for the local tool producing industry.

Katja promised to take a walk with us in the afternoon.


Posted Mar 30, 2009, 9:44 pm
Hi Mummy,

in the afternoon Katja met a friend and the two ladies took a walk with us, like Katja has promised.

We walked downhill to the valley, here you can find an area called "Clemenshammer". "Hammer" means sledgehammer or blacksmith's hammer. Here you can find some of the oldest buildings in town.

We walked into the forrest here and soon we reached a fishing pond.

Not far from here you can find this pretty restaurant which is here for more than 100 years now.

A parking place for horses :D

Due to the heavy rainfalls last week every creek in the forrest is carrying lots of water at the moment.

From here we walked to a little dam which belongs to the neighbour town Wuppertal.

The concrete dam was renovated some years ago. They have information panels here where you can read a lot about the building of the dam and also about the renovation.

This house is a typical one for this region: Houses are often covered with slate, they have green shutters and often a green painted front door.

Bye for today


Posted Apr 1, 2009, 6:36 pm
Hi Mummy,

today we took a walk with Katja's friend Kerstin and her family dog, Pepe. We went to Wuppertal, Scharpenacken, which is a former army training area. This area was used for military purposes until 2004 A.D as a shooting range. Today there is a local recreation area with vast open areas.

Many people are coming with their dogs to let them play with others. There are also people flying model aircrafts or kites.

The complete area has a size of about 185 Hektar (or 457 acres). There are open ranges, trees, creeks, you can walk steep uphill or downhill.

Nothing but green and the blue sky!

We were resting here close to the creek while Pepe was playing with some dogs.

We are all hoping that the weather will stay like this.


Posted Apr 5, 2009, 11:01 am
Hi Mummy,
we went to the town centre today. There is a spring market (the last years it was called Easter market and it was there for two weeks). This year it is taking place only this weekend. There are some booths for food and also some where they sell Easter decoration. There is also an exhibition of local artisans. They are showing their work which is related to gardening and construction of houses.

The owner of a local restaurant wants to set a new world record: He wants to sell the longest bruschetta which was ever sold. It is about 800 m long, sold in the shopping street.

When we went there, we walked along the town hall.

Here we are on Alleestraße, the shopping street, a pedestrian area.

This is a wood splitter. I don't think that any private person would buy such a maschine to make its own firewood, but it was nice to watch the machine working.

Here you can see a few metres of the world record bruschetta.

This artisan is carving several figures out of tree trunks, with a chainsaw!

They are also showing animals, chicken and goats.


Posted Apr 5, 2009, 11:16 am
Hi Mummy,
in the afternoon one of Katja's friends called and asked if she wanted to take a walk with her. What a question to ask! Of course she wanted to take a walk.

We started our tour in Kueppelstein, a district in the southwest of the municipal area. It's a rural area. From here we went into the forrest.

I saw horses here, they looked as if they were in need of a shower.

We reached river Wupper than. I have been here before, in December, when we visited the medieval castle.

We found a rock which has a engraved board game on his top. Do you know this game, mills? Katja promised to take 18 gaming pieces when we should come here again. Then we would be able to play here.

In the background you can see Muengsten bridge now.

We had to walk uphill again ...

... and reached the bridge.

We rested close to a small waterfall for a moment.

We reached the outlook pavilion than. From here you can take perfect photo of Muengsten bridge, as long it is not late afternoon like now and you have to take care of backlight.

Almost perfect :D You can even see a train crossing the bridge right now.

Katja showed me this age-old beech tree. She says that it must be a few hundred years old.



Posted Apr 5, 2009, 11:50 am
Hi Mummy,
in the late evening we helped Katja to prepare a mojito.

The mojito is one of the most famous rum-based highballs, originally from Cuba. You need five ingredients: white rum, lime juice, fresh mint leafes, cane sugar and carbonated water.

First you put the juice of a lime into a large glass, add two or three teaspoons cane sugar and mint leafes. Than mash with a muddler, so the sugar dissolves and the mint leafes will be bruised.

You fill in 6 cl white rum, carbonated water and crushed ice or ice cubes.

It's delicious and refreshing.


Posted Apr 9, 2009, 8:26 am
Hi Mummy,
we took a walk today in Eifgental, a valley which is following the creek Eifgen in the neighbour town Wermelskirchen. We went with Katja's friend Kerstin, a girl named Tina and four dogs. One of them is Pepe, Kerstin's dog, and Kira, Bonny and Pino, Tina's dogs.

The valley itself is a nature protection area with only few houses. Here is one of them.[b]v=0

We walked along meadows and through forrests.

The forrest soil was covered with anemones in some areas.

Doesn't is look pretty here?

We even managed to take a group photograph of the dogs.

From the left they are Pepe, Pino, Bonny and Kira.

This is our last photo for today. The dogs had to clean their dirty feet and legs in the creek before getting into the car.


Posted Apr 9, 2009, 8:42 am
Hi Mummy,
today we made a trip to the Eifel. The Eifel is a low mountain range in western Germany. It occupies parts of southwestern North Rhine-Westphalia and northwestern Rhineland-Palatinate. It's close to the border of Belgium and the border of Luxemburg. We went to the northern part of the Eifel.

We had planned a hiking tour and a visit of Monschau, a little town with a beautiful old town, situated at the river Rur (not to be confused with the river Ruhr).

We parked the car at Perlenbachtalsperre, a drinking water reservoir dam. We started our hiking tour here.


Posted Apr 9, 2009, 9:19 am
We reached to small town Hoefen than, part of the so-called "Monschauer Heckenland" (country of hedges), an area around the town Monschau. Here were large beech hedges planted from the 17th century to protect houses from cold winds, coming from the Hohen Venn (High Fens). Many of those hedges are as high as houses.

We reached the small town Rohren than. Here we saw something really special: A small replica of the grotto of Lourdes, a major place of Christian pilgrimage and of alleged miraculous healings.


Posted Apr 9, 2009, 9:49 am
We drove to Monschau finally. The historic town center was not destroyed in World War II, so the many half-timbered houses and narrow streets nearly unchanged for 300 years make it a popular tourist attraction nowadays. Historically the main industry of the town were cloth-mills. Monschau is also famous for its historic mustard mill.

They have steep stairs everywhere to reach the streets which are lying at the hill.

What a pity that the weather became so bad, we would have liked to sit down on the market place to have a coffee.

On our way back home we saw this base load power plant next to the motorway A4. Not a pretty sight!


Posted Apr 9, 2009, 11:19 am
Hi Mummy.

we visited Katja's parents today. They are living in the district Lennep, the second largest urban district.

Lennep has a historical old town, rebuilt afer the last devastating major fire in 1746 A.D. Many houses are under preservaton order.

We saw a blooming tree in a park.

A part of the town centre is still surrounded by remains of the former city wall. We are sitting on this wall.

Typical for the townscape are narrow lanes.

This is the market place, the farmer's market is taking place today.

You can see forsythia everywhere.

When wee took our photos the sun was shining. In the afternoon it started raining again.


Posted Apr 16, 2009, 2:00 pm
Hi Mummy,

we took a walk today. Katja told us that now the forrests are nearly green, so we should have a look. Yes, she seems to be right.

This is Muengsten Bridge, which I already showed to you. Katja knows a walking path which is directly beneath the tracks. It's hard to believe that this bridge is 107 m high.

This is a blooming apple tree. If I would still be here in late summer I could pinch some apples here.


Posted Apr 20, 2009, 9:14 pm
Hi Mummy,
we took a walk today through the outskirts of the neighbour town Wuppertal. First we had to walk downhill to the valley of Morsbach, a creek which is marking the border between Remscheid and Wuppertal.

From here we had to walk uphill to Wuppertal. Here we are in the middle of the forrest.

You can see fish ponds in the background.

From here you can see a part of the municipal area of Remscheid, the hill in the background.

We walked into the forrest again and returned to Morsbachtal. We rested close to the creek for a while.

We decided to walk to Muengsten Bridge again, because today we could take pretty sunshine photos. Here we are on the way to Muengsten Bridge.

This time we went to the leisure park which was built beneath the bridge a few years ago.


Posted Apr 23, 2009, 10:47 pm
Hi Mummy,
in Germany they have a lot of holidays and commemoration days. Today it's Take Our Daughters To Work Day. Yes, only for the daughters, In Germany it is called Girl's Day. It is meant to introduce girls to professions which are not the typically professions for females.

But even better, it's Day Of The German Beer (Tag des deutschen Bieres) which referes to the German purity law, which was edicted on April 23rd, 1516 A.D.

Katja bought several bottles of beer for us. We had a Paulaner Salvator first, a double beer.

Katja bought some more beers, have a look. Is there any beer which is also known in the USA Beck's beer, I think, is also known in the USA.


Posted May 1, 2009, 9:13 am
Hi Mummy,

today we took a walk in the neigbour town Solingen. Katja wanted to show Schloss Burg to Migui+Gui and Decker. Katja's friend Kerstin went with us, this time without her dog Pepe.

We parked the car in Solingen-Unterburg, Almost exactly high above the parking lot you find Schloss Burg. You have to walk there, always uphill or you can take the cablecar. This is the valley station of the cablecar. Of course we had to walk uphill.

Once again I admired those pretty old houses.

In Solingen they have a trolleybus system with a reverser disk. There are only three reverser disks in use worldwide: The one in Solingen and two in England.

Here you can see the cablecar going uphill.

We had to walk uphill, for hours as it seemed to me. We rested in the outlook pavilio I already saw in December.  The ceiling of the pavilion is decorated with the city arms of the surrounding towns, so here is also the city arms of Remscheid.

We reached an outdoor facilityof the castle  first, here you can find memorials for the dead of both World Wars.

We went to the castle then.

Unfortunately we could not get to the courtyard because it was prepared for some events in the following days, especially for Walpurgis Night.

We left the castle than and walked on through the outskirts of Burg.

You can find farms here, pastures, forrests and large piles of tree trunks.

Here someone decorated his fence with planted shoes.

When we reached the valley again we saw a pump which was once used in a nearby drinking water reservoir.

We walked back along the river Wupper.

This is an ear trumpet which is intensifyieng the sound of the flowing water.

Here is a weir. We rested here for a while.

We reached the car than and went home. Tomorrow we will go to the fun fair :D


Posted May 2, 2009, 11:26 pm
Hi Mummy,

we visited Cologne today. Cologne is Germany's fourth-largest city and is the largest city in the German Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia. It is one of the oldest cities in Germany, having been founded by the Romans in the year 38 BC. Cologne lies on the River Rhine.

We went to Cologne by train and reached Cologne Central station after about an hour train ride.

The first thing you see when you leave the central station is Cologne Cathedral. The cathedral is a World Heritage Site, being one of the best-known architectural monuments in Germany, and Cologne's most famous landmark. Cologne Cathedral is one of the world's largest churches, being the largest Gothic church in Northern Europe. Building of the Gothic church began in 1248 and took, with several interruptions, until 1880 to complete – a period of more than six hundred years. It is about 144 metres long, 86 m wide and its two towers are 157 m tall.

In the afternoon we took much better photos of the Cathedral, with much better light incidence than. We went inside the Cathedral. Of course I will show you the inside.

We went to the shopping streets than, especially to Schildergasse.

Many peple are riding bike here, because it's really flat here.

We went to the Altstadt (old town) than. This is Guerzenich, part of the old town.

From here we went to Heumarkt. We had lunch here.

This is one of the most famous pubs here, Paeffgen.

More pictures of the old town are following.

Finally we reached River Rhine! There are some excursion boats waiting for passengers.

Here you can see Hohenzollernbrücke (Hohenzollern Bridge)  which is a bridge for rail and pedestrian traffic.

Back to the old town with it's narrow lanes than ...

We left the old town and decided to take a walk along the river.

Here you can see the Schokoladenmuseum (Chocolate museum). We didn't go inside because we enjoyed the sunshine, besides the museum was really crowded with visitors.

Katja told us that they have a fountain with molten chocolate, you can dip cookies into the chocolate.

They have an outlook platform on the museum, from  here you have a really good overview.

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We went back to the cathedral than. On our way we saw many more interesting things.

In the background of the next photo you can see one of the most famous breweries of Cologne: Früh Kölsch. They are brewing Kölsch beer here, a top-fermented beer.

It's almost impossible to take a photo of the complete cathedral because it is simply too large and standing among many buildings. But we tried our best to take some photos showing some details.

Did I already mention that we released six ToyVoyagers here in Cologne?


Posted May 6, 2009, 12:30 pm
Hi Mummy,
when Katja came home in her lunch break she told me that I would travel home today. Nathalie will accompany me.

Katja bought some vegetables on the farmer's market.

The nice weather is gone, have a look:

That is really a good reason to come home to Florida.

We are ready to leave now.

I've packed my things and than we climbed into our envelope.

Bye, Mummy!

See you soon.


Posted May 22, 2009, 2:16 am
I am home now and I brought a friend, Nathalie, home with me to visit.  I will make sure to show her the sights of Florida!

Posted Jun 26, 2018, 9:59 pm
I'm so excited that I am traveling again!  I am going to visit posthexe in Germany!  I can't wait to get there! 

Theobald and Frankenstein wished me well on my travels:

I am on Flight # LA187051301US

Posted Jul 5, 2018, 10:20 pm
Hi Mom,
here is the first picture. I had to slepp one night a t the postoffice, because no one were at home. But now I'm on the right place. I had a very friendly welcome. Tomorrow I will tell you more.

Posted Jul 8, 2018, 9:21 pm
Hi Mom,
here is my first story. When I arrived I looked out of the windows for my adventures. I have seen the cats (Cindy and Luna) but I will be carefully! I have seen the wonderful handmade flower mosaic (ministeck) and then I got my corny meal. There was a little tiger and we found a golden treasure. Before I went to bed, I made a little sports! Next day I helped my host in post office. We had a burger and a coke for lunch. Then we made nice pictures in the shopping street. Please notice the town hall - there will be a surprise picture in one of the next updates. Following evening we were invited for a little party from my hosts sister. Very funny!

Posted Jul 9, 2018, 9:07 pm
Hi Mom,
here is my next wonderful story. We were driving from Heinebach to Bad Karlshafen by car. We stopped at a parking place for wanderers in the forrest. It was a historical place. The mountain names "Changing mountain" because long time ago the horses from the coaches were changed there. And there was a little church for praying- today a ruin. Today boys and girls don't use the place for praying...
Then we visited my hosts father in a nice home for old people. We have had icecream. And we have had a fantastic view to the salt-works, the swimming bath and the fountain. And I saw flowers - wonderful.
After that we went to the harbour - no water - only a wooden boat.
They want to build the harbour like a historical original -please sit down- for 500 000 000 Euro ! Crazy !
At last we looked the pretty town hall.
It's all interesting and exciting but now I'm tired.
Tomorrow I will tell you more.
Good night and a big hug from your Theodore

Posted Jul 10, 2018, 8:44 pm
Hi Mom,
here are the last pictures from sunday. After visiting BadKarlshafen we were going to the little village Gieselwerder. There was a fantastic place with little mills and castles. Famous castles like Wartburg and Neuschwanstein and much more. And do you remember the town hall of Melsungen ? here is it as a little building. I love this wonderful place. then we were driving to the Weserstone. I had seen and climbed the historical stone with the words (free translation)
Where river Fulda and river Werra kissed
finally both names were missed
a new german river will be
called Weser till the Northern Sea
Then I had seen the new river and the stop for ships.
When we were home again, I was so tired and I will sleep till the next weekend. Then will be the next big adventure!
Good night and a big hug your Theodore