The Black Forest Day 2

Sunday morning we woke up to a very different scene in Freiburg; the streets were deserted!  In Germany, Sunday is a day of rest which means that most places are closed.  We walked around town until we found the only bakery that was open; we refused to pay 14 Euros a person for a breakfast buffet at the hotel!

After a couple croissants, we checked out and headed to Triberg.  What’s in Triberg?  These!

      Cuckoo Clocks, of course! 

Driving through the Black Forest to get to Triberg was beautiful.  The weather immediately was cooler, the roads were swervy (just the way Russ likes them), and the towns were quaint.  We hardly saw any evidence of population until arriving at the tourist destination. 

The first thing we did upon arrival was climb up to the famous cascading waterfalls.  It was a beautiful hike!


Looking down from the waterfall.

It wasn’t until we finished our hike that we noticed people lined up at these little entrance gates.  What we didn’t realize was that we were supposed to pay for entrance into the park where the waterfall is; we played the dumb
Americans and just pretended that we never noticed.  Oops! 

Next, we went on mission “Find and purchase a cuckoo clock.”  We first traveled down the street below, looking at places like “The House of 1000 Clocks” and other shops. 


After looking down the entire street, though, we just couldn’t agree.  Russ liked ones that reminded him more of his parents’ clocks, while Lauren liked those that reminded her of her grandparents’ clock.  Russ liked a simpler design; Lauren preferred something a little more intricate.  What we found out, however, was that we knew nothing…

Famished, hot, and tired, we continued on our search for the perfect clock.  Eventually we wound up here.

Das Schnitzerhaus.  Here we met Inh Burger, member of the Master Carvers Club which was formed in order to preserve and protect the “real” Black Forest Cuckoo Clock.  Herr Burger was quick to inform us that if we had never been in his very shop before, then we knew NOTHING about clocks.  He was adament about his contribution to what is a traditional Black Forest Clock.  He ranted about the shops that appeal to the masses, getting their details cut by lasers in factories; Herr Burger completed his kuckuckuhren (cuckoo-clocks) downstairs in his workshop.  He hand painted and hand carved each piece for the houses; he used wood that he picked out.  Every piece was an individual masterpiece of old tradition. 

And they were BEAUTIFUL!  Immediately Russ and I picked out several that we liked.  We ended up with a clock that was typical of those put in train stations.  It is being shipped back to the US for us to open as a Christmas present.  You’ll never believe this, but in all of our excitement and learning from Herr Burger, we forgot to take a picture of the clock! 

On our way out, Herr Burger gave us a sample of the Cherry Rum that they put in the famous Black Forest Cake.   Strangely, it translates to Black Forest Cherry Water.  Trust us, it’s not.  43% volume on this baby.  It burns!

We loved Triberg, but it was time to go.  Lauren had chosen one more site to visit on the way home.  After a 20 minute ride, we arrived at the Open Air Museum.  This museum showed how people used to live in The Black Forest.  We walked through an outdoor museum of houses, barns, graineries, blacksmith shops, etc.  There were even some demonstrators dressed in traditional garments. 

All in all, the museum was neat, but we were so tired, hot, and exhausted that we ended up cutting it a little short.  Plus, most things displayed were in German, and we are not that skilled in the language yet.  We ended our trip with a few bratwursts and our other must-do, a piece of Schwartzwalder Kirschetorte–Black Forest Cake.  Happy Birthday, Lauren!

More pics:

6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mom on July 7, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Sounds like quite an adventure! Your blog is wonderful, Lauren. Love it!


  2. Posted by Irene on July 7, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    I think it’s good you forgot to take a picture of your clock – now it’ll be more like a surprise when you open it at Christmas! 🙂


  3. Posted by Liz Wible on July 7, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Love your Blog site, Lauren. You are a great tour guide and the pictures are beautiful. Keep it coming.


  4. Posted by Brita on July 7, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    Hey there Lauren! I love the blog and love the pics! My dad is/was a military man all his life, so he was usually overseas for a few months/year while we were younger. A few years in a row, he was sent to Germany and always brought my mom back a new cuckoo clock-she still has them in their house. They used to be so frightful to me-noisy and a bit weird. But now I think they are so interesting and thoughtful and my mom loves them! You will make so many memories!! But I do miss you…what will I do 2010-2011 school year?? Oh bother…guess I have Tony…


  5. Posted by Deb Chantiles on July 7, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    I love your blog! The pictures are beautiful and it is fun to read about your travels!
    Hope you got the birthday card I sent!
    Love you both!


  6. Posted by donna on July 8, 2010 at 2:03 am

    Love the whole story of the cuckoo clock… My step father was in Germany also and he bought one for his mother that she had in her house. I remember when we would visit as a child, I was so excited to see the cuckoo come out on the hour. What a nice gift to look forward to on Christmas!
    Happy Birthday!!


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