About Beguines and Other Famous Women in Lübeck

As I am currently again in Northern Germany and especially in Lübeck, my friends like to go on tour with me. And nothing more interesting than a nice guided tour in a historic city like Lübeck. This one was about famous women during the centuries, born in the city or in some reason connected to the Hanseatic town.

We started our tour in the early afternoon in the townhall square in the center of the city. We were pretty many, more than 20 people, all women and only 3 men. Our guide was a very nice lady, obviously from Lübeck, and she guided us with a lot of enthusiasm. Every sentence showed her love for the city, she was all excited about these many women who were courageous for the period they lived in.

The range of different women our guide was talking about, started in the early Middle Age until the mid twentieth century.

One of the most interesting facts was about the beguines. I never heard about them before. They were founded in the 13th century and gave young women the possibility to ‘escape’ an undesired marriage or the convent. Both at that time were a kind of ultimate destination with no way out. The beguines’ houses gave the possibility to live in a religious way, protected from the outer world, but without vows. They could leave any time they wanted. In this semi-monastic community for women (they existed also for men, the beghards) they lived through voluntary poverty, they cared for the sick and poor and had a certain religious devotion – like nuns and monks. They existed in Germany, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Switzerland

There were five houses in Lübeck giving these women a shelter. We saw one of them, the ‘Kranenkonvent’. They lived from sponsors but also brought a good amount of money and property when entering the convent. In addition, they worked and were in light competition with the merchants of the city. The last(!) beguine died in 2013 at the age of 92.

But there were also many single women who had a very different life to the ‘common’ ones.

Gertrud Morneweg for example was the wife of a merchant who died, and she took over his business. She was one of the first active female merchants in Lübeck but later there were more who took over the businesses after the death of their husbands. There were also female guild masters.

Between the 16th and the 18th century there were 47 witch cases in Lübeck, but only 11 were killed. Most of them had to leave the city, or they simply were found not guilty. In 1643 Anna Kemper lost her head because she let her unwanted newborn die.

Interesting was Margaretha Elisabeth Jenisch who gave her money and life (daughter of a rich banker family) to poor children.

Lübeck had also a famous Opera singer: Luise Köster-Schlegel, who lived in the 19th century.

The list is long, our guide talked about so many women who all did something amazing, were strong in a man’s world and during hard times. Our walk ended after one and a half hours and included the whole inner city of Lübeck. We were lucky to have a warm and very sunny day. As a tourist guide by myself I am always a little sensitive about other tourist guides, and so I am more enthusiastic when I meet someone nice and really amazing like her. I hope there are other tours I can walk with her. For example the back yards which were homes for widows in the middle age.










Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein/Germany:


For further information:
Women in Lübeck’s History (in German)
A little bit about Lübeck

Our tourist guide was:
Stephanie Ullrich, you can write her, she speaks English as well.


Posted in Europe, Germany, ON TRAVEL, Schleswig-Holstein | Tagged | 4 Comments

Plants and Landscapes in the San Diego Zoo Safari Park

When I was in the San Diego Zoo Safari Park with a wonderful friend, we had the opportunity to see many animals but also many different landscapes and plants from around the word and all continents. From Africa to Australia and Asia we saw colorful bushes, bizarre trees and beautiful flowers.

Here are some of them. Enjoy!
















San Diego Zoo Safari Park, California/USA:

For further information:
San Diego Zoo Safari Park
15500 San Pasqual valley Rd
Escondido, Ca 92027

opening hours: 9 am to 5 pm


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Wild Wild Animals in the San Diego Zoo Safari Park

Some time ago I have been a visitor of the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. We spent nearly a whole day from opening hour to closing time in the Safari Park wandering around. With its many sections of different landscapes of continents, we saw many interesting animals. Some more free than the others, some in small places, some others in wide opening areas.

Here are some photos of the animals I encountered.

Enjoy them!




















































San Diego Zoo Safari Park, California/USA:

For further information:
San Diego Zoo Safari Park
15500 San Pasqual valley Rd
Escondido, Ca 92027

opening hours: 9 am to 5 pm


Posted in California, ON TRAVEL, San Diego, USA | Tagged | Leave a comment

Wild Animals in San Diego

Honestly I am no zoo lover. I don’t like animals confined in a certain habitat, being watched by people and not living in the place where he/she/it belongs. Nothing is how it should be in a place like that. So I never go to zoos.

But many times friends asked me to have a look at the zoo in San Diego. It’s so different.. still animals are closed in something in a country that is not theirs. But in the end I said yes and so one of these super sunny winter days I was driving in the morning north-east of San Diego to learn more about this so much prized Safari Park Zoo.

The idea of the – originally called – Wild Animal Park came in 1964. It was meant to be a breeding facility for the zoo in the city center. Soon the main purpose of the place was to be for species conservation.

It took ten years to be ready even though the opening was after 3 years. 50.000 plants, an area with a large lagoon, an African fishing village and an aviary at the entrance were planed then. Many of the animals live in a relatively free roaming area.

The San Diego Zoo Safari Park was awarded many times for its breeding program and conversation efforts worldwide. One of the most important is the California Condor. The last 22 condors were taken in captivity to breed in 1987, now there are again nearly 400 California condors, half of them in the wild.

It is a huge place. Most of it can be walked, the African Savannah offers a train ride of half an hour. We did this tour. It was interesting but didn’t get me too enthusiastic. There is also the possibilities to tethered balloon rides.

Much better I liked the walks. We walked nearly from opening to closure. I liked very much the theme gardens, California landscape or others. Very interesting also the Walkabout Australia, a little bit like a foretaste of a continent. The kangaroos are free roaming, the wallabies are fenced.

The whole park has 1.800 acre/730 ha in the San Pasqual valley. Around 2 million visitors come here every year, watching out for 2.600 animals surrounded by 3.500 species of plants. Very interesting: the park has the world largest veterinary hospital.

I enjoyed being here, and I am glad I said yes to visit the place. It is not my favorite place to be, but I think it is mostly done well and the animals have good space and care. I was very disappointed, though, by the gorilla section. They looked extremely uncomfortable, annoyed by being observed and have only a minimum of space. Especially thinking they feel exactly the same as ‘humans’ do, it makes me feel more uncomfortable. I would not like to be displayed to a species, holding up cell phones, laughing at me for an unknown reason and flashing selfies. No happy place….








San Diego Zoo Safari Park, California/USA:

For further information:
San Diego Zoo Safari Park
15500 San Pasqual valley Rd
Escondido, Ca 92027

opening hours: 9 am to 5 pm


Posted in California, ON TRAVEL, San Diego, USA | Tagged | Leave a comment

Steamy Roasted Bell Pepper Soup at a Cold Winter Day

Bell peppers are so versatile. I love them in the salad but also stuffed with ground/minced meat. One of my favorite antipasti is peperonata, cold or warm. But right now I am in a ‘soup-mood’.

To cheer a little the cold and rainy winter day in Southern California I made a nice roasted bell pepper soup. A little more preparation but definitely worth it.

I roasted the bell peppers previously in the oven at 100°F until they had black skin and bubbles. Transferred then in an air-tight container and waiting they cool down a little bit, I could peel them easily afterwards.

Together with the other ingredients and the coconut cream it was a not too spicy warming soup.

I used the recipe on Marion’s Kochbuch, a German recipe page. She uses Crème Fraiche to garnish the soup, I put coconut cream to make the soup more creamy. And I didn’t put any thyme, I forgot to buy some. But it will give for sure a great taste.



Enjoy it!

Roasted Bell Pepper Soup
Roasted Bell Pepper Soup
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Roasted Bell Pepper Soup
Roasted Bell Pepper Soup
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to boil and prepare a baking tray with some parchment paper.
  2. Quarter the bell peppers and take out the seeds. Line the bell peppers on the baking tray and put them for around 10 minutes in the oven. The skin should be dark/black and make some bubbles.
  3. Take the bell peppers out of the oven and transfer them in a plastic bag. Let them cool for a while. Then take the skin of the peppers. Then dice them, set them apart.
  4. Now put some oil in a pot and add the diced garlic, the diced onions. Stir with a wooden spoon. Switch on the heat and let it brown a little. Meanwhile you can peel the potato and cut it in small pieces.
  5. Add the potatoes and the bell peppers. Let them brown a little. Add the glass of white wine and let it evaporate. Add the vegetable stock. Season with the spices and let it cook high for a minute and then set on simmer for around 15 minutes.
  6. With an immersion blender blend the soup to creamy, add the coconut cream and stir.
  7. Decorate with some bell pepper stripes and serve hot!
Recipe Notes

You can use also only red bell peppers, so the color of the soup with be more red.

Don't season too much when cooking. Better to season a second time after the soup is ready. 

The potato should be starchy.

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Posted in CRUMBS, recipes, soups | Tagged | Leave a comment