Sunday, 14 December 2014

On the Black Forest Gateau Trail....

Hi there!
Thanks for stopping by here in Baden Baden!
Bit overcast and drizzly today, so perfect for an expedition in the car!
We decided to find out why the Black Forest is so called.
And we think we now know. The mountains all around here are so densely wooded, that it literally is a solid wall of blackness!
We took the mountain road - the scenic route - fantastic. It was spectacular even in the fog, because the clouds were hanging so low in the trees, they looked just like cotton wool draped through the forest...

 Our mission was to reach Freudenstadt, which loosely translated means Joy Town. Sounded like a great destination, so we took off in a southerly direction.

Little villages and Fachwerkhäuser everywhere. Let's have some phonetic fun! Beamwork houses are Fachwerkhäuser. Say after me: fuchverkhoiza. No! Not fuckverk! Fuchhhhhverk!! 

Ok, moving on swiftly, we saw some amazing panoramas, and then suddenly popped out in Freudenstadt. Small place. Very pretty, with a quaint Christmas Market, a Weihnachtsmarkt. Let's try again....are you ready for this one?  Vine achts marked. Now string them together. Perfect. Just remember the ch in German sounds like you are trying to clear your throat....
And here's the Weihnachtsmann!  Vine achts mun. We'll have you talking German before you know it!

Actually our quest was to eat Black Forest Gateau Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte in the heart of the Schwarzwald.... Come on! You can do this! Ready? Right loosen up your lips for this one....
Schvarts velda kirsch tor ti (as if you were going to say tit at the end, but lose the second T). One more time: Schvarts velda kirsch tor ti. Fantastic. (Fantastisch!)

One of the greatest gifts my Mum has ever given me is bilingualism. To be able to speak both languages is a splendid thing. It really is. Better than all the gold and jewels money can buy. 
Apart from being able to lark around and have some phonetic fun, I am grateful to her everyday, because it expands the mind for sure.

Tomorrow we wend our way back through Germany and France to England. Have loved being here, spending some quality time with my Mutti, and am excited to come home and make our home all weihnachtlich! Vine acht lich. Lichhhhh, not lick!!

Lots of love and laughter,
Barb xxx


  1. Oh you do make me smile a lot. Been giving my gelli plate some welli today and owing fennel as a mask. Just like Christmas trees. Yay. Safe journey home x

  2. Should read, using, not owing. Think this predictive text is German!

  3. Well we do learn a lot from your blog, glad my husband did not notice me trying to pronounce all those words. Think he would have thought I had lost it completely. Safe journey home. xx

  4. What a lovely scenery and such a nice Schwarwaldtorte. Living too far from Germany and Alsace now and miss so much the Weinhachtsmark..... So please enjoy it for me. Have a great time.
    Laurence xx

  5. That looks so good - I now have a craving for cake. I hope you have a good journey home. x

  6. Barbara have loved your visit to Germany, even practised the speaking lessons, I appreciate your feelings on the language, my dad is Polish but he never spoke to us or learned us how to speak his native tongue , something I really wish he had done. Have so enjoyed the antics with your mum (re shopping trolleys!) your so lucky to have her . Xx keep on having fun and enjoy your road trip home x

  7. Was dark there sounds like you both have had a wonderful time. But sure dave and your dad will be pleased to have you both home safe trip home thank you for sharing your adventure with us lots love joy xxx

  8. Hi Barb,

    Have loved reading about your exploits (the shopping trolley expedition had me in stitches). The scenery looks fab and you are so lucky to be able to enjoy such quality time with your lovely Mum. Safe journey home.

    Beverley xx

  9. So glad you had a great time. We were in Berlin last weekend and sampled plenty of the delights that the Christmas markets had to offer! Delicious! Hic!

  10. Beautiful country, even if the language is very odd! One acts smart when one goes to the Weinhachtsmark otherwise one returns with no pennies. I was very lucky to visit the Black Forest one December, it was all dark, misty and felt very magical. I will never forget that that trip. Enjoy your last day, it's rather dark, cold, wet and miserable here at the moment!

  11. Beautiful Barb, I think its brilliant for children of mixed languages to be bilingual so much scope for their future. Your Mutti looks beautiful too.

    Love & Hugs

    Jacquie J xxx

  12. Your trip looks quite magical with all the hanging clouds. Thanks for the German lessons - my O level German and French are long gone now, but I am now multi-lingual in black pudding since I started running a B&B!!! Be safe on your journey home, Susan x

  13. Hello Barbara,

    I agree with you. If parents are able to speak more than one language the children should be brought up bi-lingual. Glad to see you are having a fantastic time with your mutti.

    Love, Roz.x

  14. Yum wish I were there with you....

  15. Yum yum that gateaux looks delicious
    Have a safe journey home
    Jackie x

  16. Hi Barbara, the Black Forest looks amazing, that's a beautiful photo. Those huge pieces of cake look scrummy too! Did either of you actually manage to finish it?!!! Thank you very much for allowing us to share in your fun filled weekend away with your mum. I've enjoyed the trip!

    Well, I did try the German lesson, failed badly, useless at pronouncing foreign sounds even with your phonetics!!

    safe journey home
    Love Brenda xx
    p.s. hope you managed to fill the empty space in your boot!

  17. Oh Barbara I do love coming on your travels!!! Your trip to the Black Forest reminds me of the wonderful holiday I had with Colin way back before we got married with his dear parents touring Germany on motorcycles and camping! We should have got to the Black Forest but that year it had rained so much that the Rhine had burst it's banks and we never made it!
    We did have a great time though!
    Have a safe journey home!
    Love and hugs Xxxx

  18. Amazing photos, gateaux looks fantastic, huge portions too. Dont know how you could possibly eat all that ha! ha! Can't do the language thing, did try to learn years ago at night school. Must be so cool to be bilingual. Enjoyed sharing your trip with your Mum, you look so Happy. Safe journey home.xx

  19. Beautiful memories for you and your mum safe journey home xxx

  20. Hi Barbara,
    glad you both had a great piece of Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte...
    There are a lot of Fachwerkhäuser in the city where I was born too... called Büdingen.
    Especially at christmas time when people decorate them with beautiful candles in the windows it´s really atmospheric.
    Das letzte Foto mit Dir und Deiner Mutti und der Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte ist ein sehr schönes Foto.
    Gute Heimfahrt wünscht Euch
    Rolf xxx

  21. bilingualism is a great thing. i keep trying to instill that in my kids but it's difficult with little Massi. maybe you should have a word with him, he would listen to you with more attention for sure.
    it is also a time to be treasured, spending quality time with your mu. viel Spass, hugs xx

  22. Looks great Barb, It is a beautiful part of Germany, I still struggle with a language where they use one massively long and incomprehensible word when to or three short ones would do!! But then my bi-ligualism extends to Good English and Bad Language ! However I am really looking forward to those Feinkost Lebensmittel ! and seeing you of course...xx

  23. Hi Barbara and mum. Well it looks like you two have had yet another fantastic day. What amazing scenery ......and cake!!!!! My o level French has long gone and I was never in the top group to do German as my phonetic practice just now confirms! It's great you have the ability and skill to be bilingual and so useful. Safe journey home. Love Diane xxx

  24. Hi Barb,
    I'm amazed that you posted today - felt sure that you and your mam would be locked up by now!!!
    I've tried to pronounce the German phonetically, but it sounded very rude! Loved the photo's and the tour on which you have taken us. It's great to see you having such a good time xx.

  25. Have really enjoyed following your trip to Baden Baden with your Mum. It has really made me chuckle, thanks for sharing x

  26. You both look like you are having a lovely time together. By the way, you didn't hear it but, my German was perfect !!! Must be the way you teach it. Have a good and save journey home. xx Gut Nacht ! xxx Are you impressed yet??

  27. Hi Barb,
    It's so nice to see you really enjoying yourself and your Mum looks like she is having the time of her life with her talented ( & very funny) daughter. I think it is a wonderful gift to be bilingual, you are very lucky indeed. Enjoy the rest of your time in Germany and have a safe journey home. Love Alison xx

  28. Enjoy the rest of your trip Barbara, you both look so relaxed and happy. Pat x

  29. I've really enjoyed your trip. I so love Germany and envy you your fluency. I can manage if I drag up my student days, when incidentally I spent a month in the Schwarzwald. I was in tears of laughter yesterday with the trolley saga. I hope you both sang the TrolleySsong. My husband loved the stories too.
    Glad you've had such a good time and have a safe journey home. Carol

  30. Thank you for the great German lesson Barbara. My husband and I have been sitting here trying out the pronunciation, but German words are so long and certainly give the facial muscles a good workout! I must say the Black Forest looks beautiful and very ethereal in the mist and low cloud. Love the look of the gateau too. I think a few runs up the mountains might be needed after eating some of that lol. Take care and have a good trip back home. x

  31. Wunderbar. I'm Loving hearing about your travels. You have really made me laugh the past few days. I've been making the last of my Christmas cards with the fab Clarity Club car stamp. When I get to the brushing and make up sponge stage I can always hear you saying. "You can add it, but you can't take it away" lol. That's true of your blog too.

  32. Oh wow! How do you say, " look at the size of her enormous Gateau" They sure serve large portions in Schwarzwald. Thanks for the German lesson...and yes I was sounding it all out and having a good laugh along the way. I've really enjoyed travelling with you, seeing new places and trying not to fall about laughing at your antics. Thanks for sharing. Have a safe and pleasant meander back.
    Best wishes, Jeanette xx

  33. Hallo liebe Barbara,

    ich danke dir für den herzerfrischenden Beitrag über den Schwarzwald. Es freut mich sehr das du so viel Spaß mit deiner Mom hast. Es ist immer ein Vergnügen deine Berichte zu lesen. So lerne ich auch noch Ecken in Deutschland kennen, wo ich noch nicht gewesen bin. Ich wünsche dir eine gute Weiterreise und freue mich auf deine weiteren Berichte. Ganz liebe Grüße Silvi

  34. Hello Barb, lovely pictures and a German lesson with it, a good laugh trying out the pronounciation. Great to see you and your Mutti having such a great time. How long did it take to eat that gateau, it is huge. Have a safe trip home. Bx

  35. I have very much enjoyed reading about your trip, I'm still laughing about the trolleys. I firmly believe that we should teach foreign languages much earlier in UK schools.,Safe journey home x

  36. Hi Barbara. Wow, what a fantastic photo to start your blog today, how atmospheric! Yes, I did sit here reading out loud with you, badly I might add! (I was allowed to drop French in the third year as I was that bad at it, I just couldn't get my tongue or my brain around it even though I tried!) You are so lucky to be bilingual. Once again I have loved sharing your day with you and your lovely Mum. The gateau looks yummy, they only serve tiny slices don't they....not! Have a safe trip back. Take care.

  37. Well, if you could hear my German!!!! I really do sound like I am being rude.....More practice needed I think....thanks for sharing your journey and your cake.....oh if only looks yummy....
    Have a safe journey home both , hugs....x. x

  38. Your photographs are beautiful. CH in welsh is the same sound as in German. So I'm used to scrawping midway through a word, it's so elegant- not.

  39. Thanks for the tour have a safe journey home love June xxxx

  40. Love the small(?) slices of black forest gateau! Maybe another session in the hotel pool is needed? Carpet salesmen permitting ,of course!
    Glad you have had a lovely time with your Mum.
    Gayle x


Thank you for your kind messages and I hope you get inspiration from my ramblings.

Barb x