Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Fairyland Park...German Style!
Welcome to Niedersachsen!
Map of Niedersachsen...the German state where we lived for 3 years.
The green spot central on the map is the City State of Bremen.
Just to the left is Delmenhorst...our home.
Marchenland...Fairy Tale Land
The park logo back then...
Es war einmal...
Once upon a time...in the summer of 1979, my parents came to visit us in Germany. They brought my youngest brother and sister...Tommy and Lisa...with them. We traveled all over the country in those two weeks. There was so much to see and do. But after a week in Bavaria, our visitors were getting tired, so we decided to take them to the little amusement park in the nearby town of Verden. Verden is just to the right of Bremen on the map. The journey through the villages was like a trip through a fairy tale. Thatched roof houses and barns decorated with gingerbread trim still existed...but how could they in these modern times? As a child I had read storybooks about storks nesting on the chimneys of houses and the good luck they bring. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw a mother stork presiding over her personal chimney...magic!
Amber and her "carousel of happiness."
The park was small and a little shabby. But the woods that surrounded it, gave it a storybook atmosphere. Most of the rides were for children, but there was a zip line for braver folks. A little train circled the picnic area. Amber enjoyed the rides, but her little sister Missy was having none of it. If she didn't like something...she was climbing out of it. We had a close call with the train. We thought Missy was doing okay...sitting with her sister. But without warning, Missy jumped out! As she fell the wheels of the train caught on her foot and started to drag her along. Waving our arms, we yelled for them to stop the train. We were in a panic...the Germans thought it was hilarious! Can you say "schadenfreude" anyone? Finally the train was halted and Missy was none the worse for wear. In two ways we were blessed...first the train was small and moved slowly...second, Missy was wearing some thick-soled shoes that protected her foot. Our little outing...and our little child...was saved.
Lisa and I riding the swings.
Notice the iron grip I have on Missy?
Hansel and Gretel
Part of the park was called "Marchenland"...or Fairytale Land. There was a grouping of storybook houses peopled by rather creepy robots that moved to a recorded narration...in German, of course.
Dornroschen...Briar Rose. Sleeping Beauty.
I have no idea what story this is? Anyone?
I remember that food would fall in the giants mouth...yikes!
Another unfamiliar tale...there's a guy with pies!
A miller...again I don't know the story
The park logo today
There are a lot more rides and attractions...I'm glad it's still there.
The entrance to the Fairytale Wood...Marchenwald.
I was so happy to see the gingerbread house!
Not so much the creepy children...lol!
The Pie Guy has a new house...what is that story?
Some story about a giant rabbit...Harvey?
The Pied Piper...
The city of Hameln...home of the Pied Piper of Hamlin.
We took another trip to fairytale land with a stop in Hameln. I have a lot more pictures that I will post another time. But I thought it might be fun to add this to our "Marchenland" itinerary.
Actors re-enact the tale on the steps of City Hall.
Ironically...City Hall in German is Rat Haus!!
"...und wenn sie nicht gestorben sind,
dann leben sie noch heute."*
* We would say "and they lived happily ever after." The German stories end with "and if they are not dead then they are living today."