“Why are there white lines on the road?”
“To separate the different traffic lanes.”
“So people on the road know where to drive.”
“Ehm… it’s safer that way. Those lines prevent a lot of accidents.”
“Because they provide structure. Just like all the road signs and stuff.”
“Well… I just told you: it’s for safety.”
“You cannot keep asking why! This is just how it is.”
Yes, we’re in that phase now. At home we just walk away at one point, but here in the car there’s no escaping. Bowser knows, so he keeps firing his why-questions at us. Another 300 kilometres to go…
Half our family lives in Austria. We like to see them every now and then, so we go there a couple of times a year. It’s not that far from where we live: a tiny bit through the Netherlands in the beginning, a tiny bit through Austria in the end and some 600 kilometres through Germany in between. German highways, mostly. But our navigation system is also very much into leading us off the highway, into deserted villages and over steep hill roads in the middle of nowhere. No one knows why.
Despite the fact that we sometimes get a bit annoyed by our navigation system (please just take us to Austria, you fool!), it inspires us too. Without its weird behaviour, we would just follow the highway and have breaks at rest area’s that all look the same. But since stopovers are necessary anyway on such a long drive, wouldn’t it be nice to go off the highway and visit cool places instead? Germany must have some nice spots, surely.
So that’s exactly what we started doing last year, when we had a weekend-break in beautiful Bamberg. This time we decide to visit a castle: Schloss Lichtenstein in the German state of Baden-Württemberg.
It’s a very beautiful castle, perched on a steep rock overlooking the Echaz valley. There once was a medieval castle on this location, but it was destroyed. In the 19th century, a guy called Wilhelm wanted his own ‘medieval’ castle. So he had one built in Gothic Revival style, upon the ancient foundations of the real medieval castle. I’m not gonna bore you further with factual information about this castle. Just look it up yourself.
We go inside for a tour. Watson is not impressed by the stories of our tour guide. And she wants people to know. So every now and again she suddenly shouts something unintelligible and starts giggling very loud. We tell her to be quiet, but that’s not how it works. We know that well enough. No one tells Watson what to do. She does whatever she likes. And if she doesn’t like something, she makes sure you notice. She has a rather strong own will. I guess that’s a good thing? Exhausting too, sometimes…
Even though Watson is not impressed much by the castle, she enjoys herself a lot. She talks and laughs during the whole tour and finds herself super funny. When other people start talking, she shushes them.
Outside she starts running. Down the hill, towards the exit. Too fast for her tiny legs. She falls. Flat on her face. Blood everywhere. Well… not everywhere of course. But there’s blood. I saw it. She cries a bit, but mostly acts very tough about it. Typical Watson.
Meanwhile, Bowser is behaving very good. He’s also not much impressed by the castle, but he doesn’t get loud or anything. Such an easy kid. Quite the opposite of Watson at the moment. They make a good team together. Let’s see what Number 3 is gonna be like.
(Yes, there’s gonna be a Number 3 soon. More on that later.)