Saturday, June 2, 2012

Day 14-Saturday... Villingen, Germany

After a relaxing night in Villingen, Germany, we headed out to do some sightseeing in the area. We started with a tour of one of the oldest flour mills in Germany! This mill has been in operation for over 500 years. It was run by monks but then was purchased by a local family and is still a family run business. To help grow the business the family added a bakery, which also supplies almost 20 other bakeries in the area with specialty breads and pastries. The view from the top of the mill was amazing! It was also really neat to see how a family run mill is operated and amazing to see how well the old equipment still runs! After a thorough tour of the mill we headed over to the bakery for a tour and sampling! We tried a number of amazing breads!
Top of the mill

Stream outside of the mill

The yummy baked goods we sampled!

After the mill and bakery tour we headed over to the farmer's market taking place in the city center of Villingen. Villingen was originally completely surrounded by a wall made of stones and house/buildings. As the town grew, people began building outside the wall, but inside the wall remains the lifeline of the town. Our hotel was just outside the wall! The farmer's market was amazing... We say a large variety of different fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses and wine for sale, especially erdbeere and spargel (strawberries and asparagus). We wondered around the farmer's market but soon ventured out to the other shops on the hunt for Birkenstock sandals! We wondered all over and even found a Mexican restaurant, but no fun Birkenstocks. A little disappointing but kept some euros in our pockets! We did swing by the local grocery store to check out some flour prices and prices of other random items. We discovered it's cheaper to buy beer than water or soda/pop. I did purchase some schnitzel, jager schnitzel and hollandaise sauce packets to bring home for when I'm craving schnitzel!
1 kg bag of flour for 0.89 euro or
about 2 pounds for $1.11

2.5kg bag for 1.99 euro or
 about 5 pounds for $2.49

I'm not sure what type this is, but it's a lot cheaper

Can't forget the dog food, about
8 pounds for $12.48, ouch!

After a quick nap after the farmer's market a few of us headed over to a 'fair' that was in town. This wasn't your typical Iowa, Nebraska or Kansas State or County fair. It was very different, it was more like an expo with things for sale or on display that ranged from wood pellet stoves to solar panels to pots and pans to lawn tractors to kids toys. It was amazing all the stuff they had to see! I was most excited about the large, round bale wrappers and unwrappers... They were so cool! And would have been so nice to use for my research! Now I know why they have some many wrapped bales out in the fields (or as I called them bale marshmallows or I heard another call them dragon poop) of Germany and Switzerland! They also had beer gardens around every corner! So of course we sampled the local Pilsner!
Outdoor fire pit

Jacuzzi time!

Can't forget the John Deere with the mini deck

ZTR German style

Bale wrapper

Bale wrapper again

Bale unwrapper!!

Tonight the students were on their own! So, besides the protest of P. Kitty who wanted a kebap, we headed over to the Mexican Restaurant we spotted earlier, for supper. It was by far the most interesting Mexican food I've ever had. I had the enchilada sampler, which included a lima bean and peas enchilada, a shrimp enchilada and a ground beef enchilada all served with rice. It wasn't bad, it was just interesting! Next, we ventured over to an Irish Pub for some Guinness, which was very delicious. We continued on on our bar crawl to the next bar we found, we happened to be the only patrons but we had fun. Here Mark and Dave met up with us and decided we should probably head back to the Irish Pub, which was a good choice. After a few more beers we were ready to head to our home away from home!
Sarah M. even finished a beer all by herself with no help!

The prices were right!

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