My boy’s new wheels, early Christmas lunch and a close shave with a forest bear

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Alex and Pascal Duggleby in a Bad Feilnbach beer garden

My two sons in a Bavarian beer garden

This week I am reserving a little space in the blog for a small family reunion. My son Alex, who lives in Vienna popped over to Munich on the way to Gmunden, in the Austrian lake district. More observant readers will know that going from Vienna to Gmunden via Munich is not the most direct way of travelling but it does allow one to drop in on one’s parents on the way. Gmunden is a very pretty town on the Traunsee or Traun Lake next to the Traunstein mountain (the Austrian one!). We were fortunate enough to live there many years ago while Alex went to school in Schloß Traunsee.

As most of our family meetings tend to be via Skype, and we could be separated by rather large distances in December, we decided to bring forward Christmas lunch by about two months. So Pascal came over from Rosenheim on his Quadbike and we all popped over to the Bärenstub’n, a very nice restaurant in Bad Feilnbach where you can sit outside on a sunny day and enjoy the Alpine views. If you do happen to visit Bad Feilnbach we can highly recommend the excellent food and friendly service of this local restaurant. Their website can be found here.

View from restaurant garden of Baerenstubn in Bad Feilnbach

View from restaurant garden of Baerenstubn in Bad Feilnbach

The boys get ready for duty at the next rock festival

The boys get ready for duty at the next rock festival

As you will see from the picture above our faithful guard dog RISKKO jumped at the opportunity to have a ride on Pascal’s new Quadbike. Following on from this there is a serious risk that our four-legged friend may give up spending his time riding in luxury convertible sport’s cars with beautiful ladies and take up the life of a beach bum on a quad bike (for Bavarian guests instead of ‘beach bum’ please read ‘Baggersee Po’) . Watch this space.

Pascal works in Event Management and a quad bike can be a pretty effective way of getting round the large Bavarian music festivals – especially once the mud arrives! It was very nice to have the boys together and I am including a snap shot of them at the restaurant so that their extended family and international fans (well mainly my niece Estela in Spain!) can share in the occasion.

Alex and Pascal Duggleby and the Bad Feilnbach Forest Bear

The next generation of Dugglebys and the Bad Feilnbach Forest Bear

RISKKO particularly likes this restaurant because the chef is one of his best friends and always prepares a special treat for him.

RISKKO exchanging views on cuisine with the Chef at the Baerenstubn Bad Feilnbach Bavaria

RISKKO exchanging views on cuisine with the Chef at the Baerenstubn Bad Feilnbach Bavaria

RISKKO gets some tips from the Chef at the Baerenstubn in Bad Feilnbach Bavaria

RISKKO gets some tips from the Chef at the Baerenstubn in Bad Feilnbach Bavaria

While we were in the kitchen something else caught my eye – the restaurant was selling some of Bad Feilnbach’s excellent honey. During my many trips up the Schwarzenberg mountain I have always been impressed by the large number of the bees at the top of the mountain. Like the cows grazing on the mountain pastures the bees are clearly very happy and therefore the honey they make is especially delicious (more information about the Schwarzenberg can be found in my article here). I have to say I have never seen a sad or depressed bee up there.

On the Schwarzenberg Mountain near Bad Feilnbach a happy cow making especially tasty milk

On the Schwarzenberg Mountain near Bad Feilnbach a happy cow making especially tasty milk

Honey has been in the press quite a lot recently. To be precise blue, green and chocolate-brown honey produced by some rather naughty French bees who were more interested in M&M’s than they were in pollen. If you would like to find out more please read my article which can be found here.

Local guard dog RISKKO protects the Bärenstub'ns golden treasure from baddies

Local guard dog RISKKO protects the Bärenstub’ns golden treasure from baddies

In addition to the family Christmas lunch in Bavaria the RiskBusters’ ‘Team Duggleby’ also managed to find a night when we were all in the same country (England). This meant that we could finally have the team dinner we have been promising ourselves for many months. We found a nice Italian restaurant in Twickenham near the Thames and I did my best not to whinge the whole night about the cost (coming from Yorkshire anything more than £5 a head can cause severe psychological trauma – I am still undergoing therapy!). The restaurant was Osteria Pulcinella and the food was so good that, although we were only 8 people, we seemed to get through 12 deserts!

Getting maximum value out of the Christmas entertaining budget and avoiding the rush

Getting maximum value out of the Christmas entertaining budget and avoiding the rush

It was quite an international evening as the team was made up of representatives from South Africa (Michele), Germany (Ulrike and Klaus), China (May), Australia (Tong), France (Vincent), Lancashire (Nikki) and Yorkshire (guess who). Clearly the last two represent two of the culturally most distant races, especially linguistically.

So after a strong focus this week on food I promise in next week’s blog to have some more scenic photographs. There will be a special focus on a Bavarian hilltop-castle and its beautiful town. By the way here is a close-up of the Forest Bear we saw on the Schwarzenberg Mountain – fortunately it was preoccupied with its cub. Don’t say you don’t get exciting wildlife pics on the Chris Duggleby website!

Bavarian Forest Bears in the garden of the Baerenstubn near the Schwarzenberg Mountain

Bavarian Forest Bears in the garden of the Baerenstubn near the Schwarzenberg Mountain

Happy eating and remember to keep an eye out for any bees showing early signs of obeesity.

Chris Duggleby.

Pascal Duggleby having fun with RISKKO on the Quadbike

My youngest having fun with RISKKO on the Quadbike

Alex Duggleby gets the impression he is not alone in Bad Feilnbach

The older one has the impression he is not alone in Bad Feilnbach

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