Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Munich weekend - Noah's basketball tournament

Noah is on the U14 (14 year old and younger) basketball team and they had their yearend tournament in Munich. This tournament featured a lot of good teams from all the international schools in Germany. In Dresden the international school is not so international being that the school is attended by over 90% German students. So it is understandable that Noah, being only 11, is a starter on the team along with the only two other Americans on the team (although they were 13 year olds). Even though the Dresden team creamed the German public school teams they played around Dresden in their season games they were easily out played by the international schools from around Germany as their makeup was international. Dresden finished 9th out of 10 teams.

I had to figure out how to get to the small Bavarian Village of Haimhausen, in the countryside, where the tournament was hosted. After serveral modes of transport to get there, including the for the last leg, only one bus that went every hour on the weekday and every 3 on the weekend, i was able to make it to the tournament each day but had to mind the schedules. The town was what you would expect with all red roof's, a church, a castle, and farm fields close by. Haimhausen (the first day i had to wonder around the village to find the school):

The kids were hosted at the players and other students houses for the extended weekend. David and i stayed in a hotel in Unterschleissheim and each morning we went our seperate ways. Melissa had a conference in Titisee Germany which is in the Black forest.

David on one side of the tracks, waiting to go into Munich, me on the other side going to the countryside:
It was a great experience for Noah staying overnight at a BIS students house with another of his team members. They played video games and after dinner they shot hoops outside.

Noah at face off, with the 14 year olds, check out the size difference between Noah, number 8, and the other kids:
Noah taking free throws:

Noah up against the Bonn team (they won the tournament), they had all 14 year olds on there "A" team (as they had two teams) and were a great team to watch as well as great sportsmen. Noah's bracket was very tough as they had the first and second place teams and third place team in their qualifiing pool.
Noah looking for a rebound outsized, but ready to scrap for the rebound.

Noah and the Berlin British International School (they took second place), again Noah is a little out sized:
Keith sneaks off with David to at night to Munich - Marienplatz (Rathaus with glockenspiel).
Hofbräuhaus, great traditional Bier (David and i agreed likely the best we have had in Germany) and very famous and historic. Great for traditional german food:
I ordered crisp knuckle of pork, not for the weak minded:
David with his Bavarian weisswurst, a traditional Bavarian sausage, very tasty with a hint of lemon flavor, not what one would expect but very good:
Hofbräuhaus lamp, ok after my second liter everything was looking good:
Patio, David on back left (if you can find him):
Glass cleaning and pouring station, this was a very busy place:
Our server carrying 8 moss of Bier, in the background lockers for the local's biersteins, as they leave them in the bier hall. Lot of regulars dressed in traditional garb have regular reserved tables and mingle with the visitors, first time we had seen some of the traditional clothes.
If you ever visit Munich this is a must stop and make sure to get a Bretzel (giant pretzel) another specialty that can be bought from one of Bretzel Frau's working the crowds:
Traditional band with Bavarian colors, between songs they pull out their liter moss and take a swig or two.
The Hofbrauhaus was huge with many large rooms in a maze of room after room including the outdoor garden where we found a great table. The largest bier hall i have ever been in. I have wanted to come here since i heard of this place in my high school german class and it lived up to it's reputation. There was a second floor also for when summer crowds i guess, but wasn't in use this night.
Buildings at night just off of Marienplatz:
The basketball tournament was hosted at the Baviarian International School which was once housed in this castle, the new school buildings are right next to it. This history of this castle was that it was sold (along with other smaller castles) in order for Crazy King Ludwig to raise money to build Neuschwanstein, one of the most famous Castles in Germany. It was sold to someone from Northern Germany and not a popular move as it was a Bavarian Castle.

Munich weekend - David explores Munich

Noah played on the Dresden International School and they had a big tournament over a long weekend in Munich where I watched a lot of basketball and did a little sightseeing and David did a lot of sightseeing and no basketball. These are some of David pictures from his adventures.

We loved Munich and i would like to go back again so i can see more.

The Munichener Frauenkirche:
A few buildings in the Engischer Gardens, David really enjoyed these large gardens:
BMW world:
Olympic villages, from the 1972 olympics:
New vehicle area in BMW world,
James Bond collection of BMW's, original BMW's used the the Bond movies:
Front gate at Dachau concentration camp - "Work will set you free" the nafarious geeting on the entrance gate:
Some of the building at Dachau:
Curved memorial building at Dachau - made with all curves, to stand out from the other regular buildings that made up the original camp:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Weekend in London - day two

Day 2: Trafalgar Square from the Double Decker Bus:
Lions at Trafalgar Square:
Noah happy on the Double Decker, got the front seat again:
Tower of London and the Tower Bridge in the background:

Inside the Tower of London on an outer wall:
Noah taking a shot from a tower, lots of hands on stuff that he really liked here:
One of the workers, had a nice chat with him about football (soccer), he was trying to recuit Noah for his football club Hampton FC when got older, told Noah they could use a good forward.

Tower of London, White Tower in the middle:
Guard protecting the Crown Jewels:
White Tower:

Location of the Crown Jewels.
Noah manning the cannon:

Tower Bridge:
Melissa, in her birthday suit, being launched by a dolphin over the Tower Bridge (she didn't know i took this picture of her):
Walking over the Tower Bridge:
David and downtown London:
Tower of London from across the Thames:
Shakespeare's Globe theater:
Millennium Bridge, walking bridge over the Thames. St. Paul's Cathedral in the background, we climbed up to the very top of the dome:
Climbing up to the top of the dome:
View from the top of the dome:
David on top of the Dome:
St. Paul's Cathedral from the front:
Front of the British Museum:

Inside court yard of the British Museum:
Form imatating life, Melissa and Noah find a resemblance. Me want Gum Gum, Melissa and Noah Dum Dum:
Subway stop on way back to our hotel: