Tag Archives: Germany

S is for Snacks


by Lillian Csernica on April 22, 2016

When you’re traveling, especially long distances, you want to keep a munchie stash with you because odds are good you will get stuck somewhere waiting for longer than you expect.  Low blood sugar makes the trials of traveling even more irritating.  These are my favorite snacks from all the places I’ve visited:

France

almond-chocolate-croissant-p1-400

breadandcie.com

Pain au chocolat (Chocolate croissant)

Germany

productimage

foodservice.johnsonville.com

Sausage (bratwurst)

Pretzels

Japan

tumblr_nmm0dinzd91sd7907o2_500

Daifuku mochi — Depending on the characters used, this treat is called either “big belly rice cake” or “great luck rice cake.”  The traditional filling is anko, or red bean paste.  Crushed melon is also used, and in the springtime strawberries are popular.

anmitsu-dessert

Anmitsu: It’s a traditional Japanese dessert that has cubes of agar agar jelly, fresh fruit slices, red bean paste, and a dollop of ice cream.  In this case, green tea ice cream.  Looks really weird, doesn’t it?  Pat and I had this at the Haneda Airport during our twelve hour layover.  Not nearly as sweet as an American ice cream sundae, anmitsu combines flavors and textures into a unique and tasty dish.

Mexico

2abf4523cf81278e09dc718c4bf581e6

Galletas (Cookies)

The Netherlands

stroowafel-topcrop1

Stroopwafels are two large, thin cookies with syrup in the middle.  The size of stroopwafels vary, and you can get them dipped in chocolate, topped with whipped cream, etc.  A small package of these is just right for a snack.

United States

potatoesbaked1

Northern — Potatoes.  Baked, fried, or scalloped, I do love the starchy little devils.

Southern — Hush puppies and corn bread.  I love hushpuppies.  I would live on them if it weren’t for the fact that by the end of the first week I’d be able to actually hear my arteries hardening!

Eastern — New England clam chowder.  With lots of black pepper.  I do not eat the red stuff.

Western — San Francisco sourdough bread.  Whenever I order breakfast in a restaurant, I get sourdough toast.  No matter where in the U.S. I might be, the yeast starter probably came from San Francisco.

cheeses

flexibristol.org

Central — Cheese.  I love cheese, really I do.  String cheese, cheddar on my burger, grilled cheese sandwiches, alfredo sauce, you name it.  Can’t have bleu cheese because I’m allergic to mold.

2 Comments

Filed under artists, Blog challenges, chocolate, classics, Conventions, creativity, Family, Food, history, Japan, Kyoto, Lillian Csernica, memoirs, research, travel, Writing

Q is for Query


by Lillian Csernica on April 20, 2016

 

I thought it might be entertaining to list some of the questions I’ve asked and been asked in my many travels hither and yon.

group-people-asking-questions-37510872

Where’s your horse?  (Do people in Europe still think all Americans are cowboys?)

Do you live in a grape field?  (I didn’t know what to say to that until I realized the person asking the question meant a vineyard.)

Is this your mother?  (No, she was not my mother.)

Does your husband want to be in the picture too?  (The person with me was not my husband.  My husband wasn’t even in the same country at the time!)

 

37004997-femme-de-dessin-anim-fatigu-clip-art-vecteur-illustration-avec-gradients-simples-tout-en-une-seule

Where are we?

Are you sure that’s where we are?

Then why aren’t we seeing ( insert name of offramp, landmark, national monument, etc.)?

 

15770826-retro-looking-angry-woman-vintage-clipart-collection

Where’s the bank?  It’s inside the post office?  Where’s the post office?  (The local branch turned out to be about a mile away, on the far side of the Yokohama train station, on the third floor of an office building.  I would never have found it had it not been for the very helpful Japanese security guard who kept talking to me as if I really did understand most of what he was saying. At that time, I didn’t, but I caught enough to get me to the third floor.)

1286778-clipart-of-a-young-asian-traveling-woman-with-a-headache-royalty-free-vector-illustration

In French:  Do you speak French?

Non.

In German: Do you speak German?

Nein.

In Nederlands: Do you speak Nederlands?

Nay.

In English: Do you Speak English?

Yes!

(I was on the train back to the Netherlands from Germany when a nice German customs official needed to know if I had anything to declare.  He was so patient with me.  It must have been obvious I was really nervous and didn’t have a clue about what I was expected to say.  I’d already been asked for my “papers” {passport} twice.)

any-questions-free-clipart-1

11 Comments

Filed under Blog challenges, Conventions, creativity, editing, Family, family tradition, fantasy, Fiction, frustration, Humor, Japan, Lillian Csernica, memoirs, mother, Self-image, travel, worry, Writing

B is for Brick


by Lillian Csernica on April 2, 2016

I spent a day in Hamburg, Germany.  By a random twist of Fate, I turned left out of the train station.

main-railway-station-of-hamburg-partial-view-hamburg-b613y9

Had I turned right, I would have been caught up in all the glitz and prepackaged “German experience” for tourists.  Going left took me into the areas populated by the local folks.  This included a corner market, a delightful bakery, and a beautiful little church built from brick.

12756388-lukas-church

There are two large churches in Hamburg also built from brick.

 This is the church of St. Peter, which dates all the way back to the 11th Century.

13jul2014575

goodyfoodies.blogspot.com

This is the church of St. Catherine, dating from the 13th Century.

Amazing, isn’t it, that brick could last a thousand years?

 If you ever get the chance to go to Germany, do it.  I took the train there (this was the same summer I spent in the Netherlands), so I watched the landscape rolling by.  Fairy tale beautiful, I swear.  B also stands for the Black Forest, home of so much legend and folklore!

 

19 Comments

Filed under Blog challenges, fairy tales, fantasy, history, legend, Lillian Csernica, research, travel, Writing

K is for Keepsake


By Lillian Csernica on April 12, 2013

 

My family teases me because they think I have too many keepsakes. I suppose I do. Beach glass and seashells and a beaded lizard keyring and a little bean bag dragon called a “shishimai.” I have a pot holder from Santa Fe given to me by my Japanese teacher and some odd little toys from a friend in Germany. I even have a jade Kwan Yin pendant from a friend in Hong Kong.

I am sentimental. I have been to a lot of places and seen a lot of things, but best of all I have met a lot of people. When I went to the 2007 World Science Fiction Convention held in Yokohama, Japan, I took a blank journal with me. I had people sign it, leaving their email addresses and greetings and little reminders of the moments we shared. It was the best way I could think of to capture more than just the faces of the people I met on the vacation of a lifetime.

While I treasure that book and the photo album that goes with it, I think the most precious of my keepsakes is a little inkwell made of blue glass in the shape of a one room schoolhouse. The chimney is where the quill dips into the ink. A nice man named John ran a comic book shop in Santa Cruz. He agreed to host my very first book signing when I was promoting The Year’s Best Horror XX. Friends and family and my husband’s co-workers came, along with UCSC students and curious locals. We had a great time. At the end of the evening, John presented me with the blue glass inkwell. I have never seen the like before or since. It remains a singular treasure.

Most writers don’t make a lot of money. Self-promotion is hard, tiring work. Every now and then somebody comes along who appreciates what you’re doing and how hard you’re trying. Sometimes that appreciation takes tangible form in what becomes a keepsake.

I want to hear from you folks. Do you have any keepsakes related to your writing? Any trinkets or treasures that inspire you?

11 Comments

Filed under Blog challenges, Family, Fiction, Humor, Writing