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Monday, December 3, 2012

Schloss Waldeck - Mists

I've had this post in my head the day this happened and I've been hoping I don't forget.

As I've mentioned, we were fortunate to stay at a real castle - Castle Waldeck, which is perched above the shores of Lake Edersee.

When we arrived, one of our guides suggested waking up early to see the mists retreating from the lake.  The first morning, we didn't wake up early enough.  The sun rises quite early in Germany in July and even though we were up around 6.30, the mists had disappeared.

The next morning however...

Mike was up around 4 to use the washroom and he realized the time.  He shook me awake and I hastily pulled on my jeans under my nightshirt, threw on my sweater, grabbed the camera and key and headed out.  Mike, however, went back to bed.

I opened the door and the hallway was quiet.  The glass walled elevator, which was in a tower, sat in the dark.  I pushed the button and the elevator hummed as it climbed up to our floor.  When the doors opened, the inside light came on and as I descended, the light came with me down into the darkness.

I stepped from the elevator and into the courtyard. And my breath caught in my throat.

The mist covered everything.  I couldn't see the far end of the courtyard and it was deathly silent, except for the clanging of the flagpoles.  I walked to the battlements and stood with my hands perched on the side.  All I saw was mist, whiteness as far as the eye could see.  I turned back and could barely see the walls.

I stood for while in silence.  Thinking how many soldiers stood on these battlements standing watch, knowing the enemy was in the valley below, but unable to see them.  Wondering if they would survive the fight.

I looked down and it hit me again that I was standing on stone.  I was standing in the courtyard of a castle!  A real live castle!  The lump in my throat came back.  I never believed I'd be able to spend the night in a castle.  Hell, I never thought I'd make it to Germany.  I thanked God, I thanked the Universe for sending this opportunity and for us being able to grab it and run with it.

I took this video just as there was a break in the mists.

I stood on the battlement, thinking and marveling and just drinking it all in, before I realized I had been out for about half an hour.  I raced back upstairs and poked Mike until he woke up.  I remember saying, "Get up, you need to see this!"

We stayed for a short while later before we returned to our room to get ready for breakfast.

This castle is officially one of my favorite places in the world.

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