Although Memorial Day is often a 4-day weekend, our weekend was cut short so that Andy could return to base for a special flag detail on Monday morning (that, in true Army fashion, got canceled at 0600 the morning of.) So, squeezing in one last activity on Sunday morning as we headed home, we stopped by Ettal Abbey.
Ettal Abbey is a Benedictine monastery founded in 1330 with an on-site cheese-making factory, distillery, and a few other shops.
Sadly, the monastery’s shops and distillery were closed, as they were having Sunday services when we explored the grounds.
Poor Drew was startled when the church bells began chiming to alert everyone that the service was about to begin! We would have liked to attend, but we didn’t as we were not appropriately dressed… and our toddler has not quite mastered sitting quietly during an entire church service 😉
Instead, we wandered around the garden and past the pastures.
Drew loved seeing the cattle and kept squealing in excitement – perhaps he will grow up to be a rancher like his Daddy was in pre-Army life, who knows.
I, too, was incredibly excited to see the cattle. They had bells on their necks, just like you see in tourist magazines about the Alps. When we saw the first head of cattle as we drove down to Garmisch on Friday night, I had this moment of “Can you believe we really live here?!”
But before I close this post, I want to share a few final thoughts about Garmisch: It was a hard trip for us despite the beautiful pictures. Very hard. It was our first vacation since moving to Germany and, of course, having Drew. But, honestly, neither of us was disappointed when we had to leave a day early, other than still having to pay for a night in a hotel that we didn’t stay in.
I had a difficult time not being able to “go, go, go” as I would normally do when traveling. I know you’re probably thinking, “Duh, Bailey, that’s what happens when you have a child,” but logically knowing that and really experiencing it are two different things.
Nonetheless, I am so grateful to live here in Germany and experiencing what I can. Seeing some of Germany (and of Europe) is better than seeing none of it.