Many years ago, before I even thought about moving to Austria, we got a delivery of new European Travel Brochures at work.

There was a picture on the front, of the most beautiful, fairy tale castle that I had ever seen.

I wanted so badly to see it with my own eyes, but I knew that would never happen.

Single mom, two kids, dead end job….

But you never know what turns life is going to take.

 

Peter and I took his mother with us to Munich, because she had never been. And on the way home we stopped at the castle that I had been dreaming about for almost a decade. Neuschwanstein!

It was wonderful! It was everything that I expected it to be and more.

When we arrived in Hohenschwangau, a beautiful, traditional Bavarian town that is where you start your walk to the castles.

That’s right, I said castles.

We had been on the road for a few hours and decided to stop and get some coffee in a peaceful little café, right across from the  Jägerhaus in Hohenschwangau.

They had a small sun dappled courtyard, where we sat and had Cappuccinos and Kuchen (they do not serve a Melange in Germany, not even in Bavaria).

 

It was so lovely that if I hadn’t been jumping out of my skin with excitement, I probably could have sat there much longer.

 

But I was that excited, so we headed off to find out how to get to the castles.

This is the Jägerhaus, which is indicative of this very traditional, very touristy, very kitschy town.

I looooooved it.

 

You can see Neuschwanstein above you.

 

You can walk all of the way up, or you can take a bus halfway up.

We took the bus.

I almost let my inner redneck out when this woman cut in line and shoved us as she went past.

As we say at home, “She ’bout made me take my earrings out!”

But I wasn’t going to let that heifer tarnish my dream.

Because of the winding path up the mountain, you ride to the lower of the two castles, Hochenschwangau, first.

 

Then the path gets really uphill. And I realized just how very out of shape I was.

Peter was videotaping and I was rushing on ahead, out of pure excitement and adrenaline.  But honestly, when I saw how mountainous my own behind looked, well, that film will never be seen, ever. Period.

The road winds around and you get amazing views of the countryside and the parasailists jumping off of the mountains. (They may be officially hills. Anything the least bit vertical looks like a mountain to me. Much to my husband’s amusement)

Then you come around a bend and there is a smallish bridge, which is the spot to be to take pictures of the castle.

Peter suffers from vertigo, bless his heart, so he didn’t go out on the bridge.

But I did! And I got the pictures to prove it!

 

We went on the tour, which is shorter than the time it takes to stand in the line and wait your turn.

The inside was just as beautiful and fairy tale like, as the outside.

Alright, it was, as Peter said, very kitsch. But I eat that stuff up with a spoon.

I am a little fat woman from the piney woods of Louisiana. Kitsch is the absolute shizz to me.