(click on photos to enlarge)
From Vilscek to Weiden…
We are staying in Weiden & working in Vilscek. The most direct route for us is along some minor highways and long stretches of secondary country roads. The roads I’ve seen from Frankfurt to Weiden & Vilscek are very well maintained, and in equal or better condition than those at home.
One day driving from work back to our hotel I rode shotgun and took a few snapshots. It was overcast so the sky & the colors aren’t too bright or cheerful.
The countryside is very green, a fact not lost on the many central Texans I work with who both love the green and wish it were in Texas. The small area of Germany I am in is a rolling landscape with gentle hills and shallow valleys.
The German countryside in this area seems to be laid out along a balance of village, fields (under till or not), and forest. They don’t blend, but go from one to another abruptly apparently following long established property lines.
The demarcation from village or town to field, is immediate. The only fences seem to be between the houses. Occasionally a street will mark the change. Tractors are always driving on the road so these have to be passed with care.
The change from field to forest is just as abrupt. The forest is on one side of a straight line, the fields are on the other. There are no scattered trees on the field side and no crops creeping into the forest. That is not to say things are laid out along squares & rectangles, only that the differentiation from one to another is obvious and immediate.
The change from forest to field or village is just as abrupt. At one point we are driving through the forest, then around the bend a village suddenly appears with paved sidewalks, street signs, parked cars, power poles and most any other modern indication of you could think of.
The villages are a mix of old and new, but mostly new. Sometimes a modern home is right next to a very old home, barn or storage garage. Of course some or most could be very old homes with new facades. There is no way of knowing. The house & building colors are very interesting also. There is a huge mix and the paint on most looks recent if not new. Peeling paint can be found, but you have to look for it.
Most of the homes have boxes overflowing with brightly colors flowers. Even in town this can be seen here and there. Many of the village homes have piles of firewood next to them as shown in the 1st photo below. Some of the piles are so huge that I think it could last a few winters. Central heat is obviously not a feature of these houses.
The villages appear every 3-5 kilometers or so. Sometimes the road passes right through the center of the village, sometimes the road passes off to the side.
These are street scenes in what is probably Freihung.
This is Kaltenbrunn from the highway. Note the demarcation from town to field. A bit up the road from here we enter a forest then turn right and soon pass through this town.
These are scenes in Kaltenbrunn. Note the mix of old and new.
Traveling along we hit countryside again. This is outside of Durnast. You can see the line of fields then forest. Most of the crops we have seen are corn. The field behind the lone tree below is corn. It is approaching 8 feet high.
This is in Durnast (above) where we make a left to go home. The yellow signpost points to Weiden & Freihung. The secondary road to the right is closed for construction which causes us a 5-10 minute detour coming home. At first I thought this place was named Umleitung because of all the signs. Then I learned Umleitung means detour.
This is in the outskirts of Weiden approaching the downtown center. Bicyclists have the right of way and you have to be very careful of them.
This is Weiden very close to our hotel & very close to downtown.
Photos of the scenic old town of Weiden will be in the next email.