Sunday, December 16, 2007


Okay! I'm behind! Yet, I'm starting to catch up! I've finally managed to color & contrast correct all the images I took in England. I will post more are my favorite pictures...easy to determine...they are of Mathias and/or Steve. Above, Mathias and Steve toast the holiday season with a sample of Gluhwein at Birmingham's German Market.

Mathias was off on Monday...a day of freedom and relaxation from the otherwise grueling Nutcracker schedule. We took a train to Ludlow to visit the castle, town, and church. Above is Mathias on one of the many quaint English side streets in Ludlow.

Unfortunately, the tour books didn't list the new hours for the castle. In December and January it is only open on the weekends. There was, however, a great walking trail around the place. The weather was glorious.
These are images outside the walls...outside the "paying area" that we really wanted to visit.

Our walk took us by many interesting projections and architectural niches.

We were deep into the foliage.

In addition to the castle, we toured an old historic home in Ludlow. Right now I can't think of the name of the place. The man collecting admission seemed to be drunk or otherwise "out to lunch". Thus, there was no "tour" or even a brief introduction. It didn't really matter. We had a blast. The building was obviously one that changed over the centuries. It had originally been three different structures that came under a single ownership and was modified under a single roof. I've never seen such an odd staircase. It gave new meaning to the term "jury jigged". Above is a photo taken in a bathroom...must have been late Victorian. Mathias' reflection is seen in the mirror.

The upper stories were quite interesting. Like most historic homes, nothing was level, straight, or square. The ceiling sloped as much at the flooring. Above, Steve demonstrates the "giant" effect!

Above, Mathias and Steve attempt to raise the ceiling.

Above, Mathias just fits in this doorway!

We also visited the church in Ludlow and climbed the tower for a spectacular view to the city. Above is Mathias in the spiral staircase.

We found a great pub for local ale after a hard day of sight-seeing!

At the end of the day we were back in Birmingham. Mathias tried to teach Steve how to play golf on a computer game. They played a "virtual" Harbor Town course...that's Hilton Head, South Carolina...a place they've both visited. Steve remembers the course but Mathias knew how the manipulate the computer players. We all laughed a lot.

More photos are coming!


Anonymous said...

Thanks, Susan, your Dad and I have enjoyed each picture - enlarging for details - so we feel we were with you except for the gluhwein, which we missed! Greaat pictures of Mathias and wonderful commentary. Keep it coming as you have time. Love, Mom

Anonymous said...

Holy Crap...Mathias having a beer! Something I have not seen before!!! As for the giant effect and others...great great photos, Susan - of course! I'm enjoying this so much!---S.

Wanda said...

Wonderful pictures! I'm sorry I'm so behind in blog viewing but I'm getting caught up now. I hate the smell of gluhwein but it absolutely HAS to be present and any german christmas market or it just isn't right! Mathias looks great and I'm sure Alex was sad he couldn't be there too. But I'm glad you guys had the chance and that he actually had some time off!