The Portugal Adventure – Beautiful Bavaria: The Waiting Lady

The days melted away like a snow cone in summer. There were plenty of things to do at camp when we weren’t sight-seeing. Harry was busy, and though we talked as often as possible, by the last day at camp I still hadn’t heard the words that I was waiting to hear.

On that day, we read a devotional together, and prayed. Then, we talked. Harry said that he sure would like to date me. I responded enthusiastically. He then said, “It would be pretty hard to date with you in the states, and me in Portugal. I felt rebuffed.

What did he mean by that? I was on tenterhooks all day. Every time I added everything up, it did not seem like it should have been a “goodbye, nice to know you.” But it felt like it.

In the afternoon, I wandered around the campground watching the various activities. The castles were on Lake Starnberg, and some of the campers went swimming. Though it was August, the air was too cold in Bavaria for me to want to test the waters!

Lake Starnberg

Some campers played tennis.

Others played volleyball.

Harry and I went to see the sunset on Lake Starnberg.


There were swans.

We took pictures of each other.

Then, we went to get ready for the closing night banquet. Never ever tell me that it takes women longer than men to get ready. I was dressed up, and ready awhile before Harry appeared.

All of my dorm mates asked on a regular basis what was going on with Harry and me. I told them I would like to know that answer to that question, too. That evening, when I was getting ready, they asked again. Remembering the remark of the morning that I did not understand at all, I burst into tears. They gathered around me, and helped me with my hair and makeup, and were so affirming and encouraging that I was able to face the evening with a smile.

Harry appeared in his Portuguese suit. If he wasn’t so tall, he could have passed for a Portuguese man any day of the week. I searched his face, but he wasn’t giving away anything as far as I could tell.

The banquet food was delicious, and I enjoyed our last dinner in Bavaria. The next day, we would begin our journey south back to Portugal.

What would come next?

…and the lady waited…

The next post is here.

The first part of this story may be read here.

The Portugal Adventure – Beautiful Bavaria: Linderhof Castle

Linderhof Castle,  Bavaria, Germany
Ludwig II

The last of the sight-seeing trips we made in Germany was to a castle. Bavaria has some beautiful castles and palaces, and Linderhof has to be one of the prettiest. Ludwig II built it to be his “hunting lodge.” Built in a secluded area, it was the only castle that Ludwig actually finished. He completed it in 1878, eight years before he died. It is small, but lavishly appointed.

I loved walking through part of Bavaria’s history. School history textbooks can be so dry and boring. If one picture is worth a thousand words, being there is worth an entire volume of words. 

Dining room

Ludwig II acceded to the throne at 18 years of age. He knew next to nothing about politics or even about life, though he was popular with the ladies.  Ludwig was a a shy man who valued his privacy, and his solitude. While he was alive, no strangers were permitted in his castles. He even had a kind of dumb waiter made so that he did not have to see his servants; the entire table went down into the kitchen where it was filled with food and sent back up to the dining room.

Ludwig reigned  during the “German War,” during which his uncle, King of Prussia, conquered Austria and Bavaria and they became his vassals. This triggered his need to have a “fairy tale” life where he was ruler over all he surveyed. In fact, he overspent on his various dwellings, and was being dunned by foreign banks for their money before his death.

The Grotto

One of Ludwig’s fantasy projects was his grotto. He built a lake inside of it, and had a boat shaped like a shell from which he, an audience of one, enjoyed performances of Wagner’s works. Ludwig had brought Wagner to Munich in 1864 when he became king. By 1865, Wagner had gotten into trouble with the government with his anti-semitic remarks, and had to leave.

King Ludwig was religious, and felt keenly the weight of sin in himself. He had an ongoing fight within himself to be free of sin, and to be pure before God. In his castle Neuschwanstein, renamed the Castle of the Holy Grail, he designated the throne room The Hall of the Holy Grail as a reminder of the mystery of salvation for the world.

One of my favorite rooms in the castle is the famous Hall of Mirrors. When you stand there, it seems as if that room goes on into infinity.

The Peacock Room, and the king’s bedroom are two other places that tourists find interesting. You can take a virtual tour of these two rooms without having to fly to Germany.

The King’s Bedroom

The Peacock Room

Our week in Bavaria was going by quickly. We kept busy, but I did wonder from time to time if . . . .

Link to the first Portugal Adventure

Link to the next Portugal Adventure

Portuguese Cuisine – É Canja ! (Portuguese Chicken Soup)

Have you ever said, “It’s easy as pie.”? If you’ve ever made a pie from scratch, you know it isn’t as easy as it sounds. The Portuguese saying is, “É canja!” It’s as easy as making chicken soup. I think making chicken soup is much easier than making a pie from scratch (let alone one made from flour, shortening, and all the rest). It does, however, take time to do it right. This is not a microwave recipe. But it is good. Additionally, a popular proverb states: “Cautela e caldos de galinha nunca fizeram mal a ninguem.” (“Caution and chicken broth never did anyone harm.”) This is a basic recipe. Most cooks have their own signature touches they put in their Canja.

1 large stewing hen (You can make chicken soup with a fryer, but it does not come close to the rich flavor of a stewing hen.)

2 quarts of water
1/2 cup of rice
Salt to taste
Italian parsley

Wash the hen in cold running water. Remove the eggs (found inside the chicken), liver, gizzard, feet and heart, and reserve them on the side. Put the hen in a large pot, and add the chicken’s feet, the water and salt or other seasoning you may like. Bring it to the boil. Turn the heat down and simmer until the chicken is tender. This may take several hours. Skim off any foam that forms.

When the broth has reduced to 1and 1/2 quarts, put the gizzard, liver, feet and heart into the broth. After 10 minutes, slowly add the rice. Cover the pot, and let it simmer for approximately 20 minutes, then add the chicken’s eggs and cook ten more minutes.

Take out the gizzard, heart, feet and liver. Put the feet to the side, and mince the rest with a knife. Put some in each soup plate along with some of the hen’s egg(s)  and some minced parsley before you add the broth and rice. Serve with fresh bread.

The Portuguese often use a soup as the first course of a meal, so there is no need to have the meat in your soup, though if you want it for a main dish, you may certainly add more meat. Or, you can use it to make something else.

For many of the older Portuguese women that I knew in Portugal, having a chicken was a rare Sunday treat under Salazar’s rule. That being the case, one would wish to make it stretch as far as possible. I never actually ate any chicken feet, but I was given to understand that it was an honor to be offered one of the feet.

Do you have a special recipe for chicken soup? Is this recipe easy?

Canja de Galinha