The day before my mom was to leave to head back to the US, we took her one last day trip to see two more cities. The first city was Maastricht in The Netherlands. It was once a Roman settlement that still has many of the original buildings and city fortifications. It was cold & windy when we first arrived & as we were leaving the sun finally came out. We walked around the old city center & went into a few home shops that I had remembered from when Christian and I had visited a year ago.
We had lunch in Maastricht, close to the town hall. We didn’t know at the time, but the cafe was called Doe Gewoon, which means just do and the servers & cooks are mentally disabled. They have a desire and pleasure to be working in the kitchen & with others. When we were seated, they presented us with pens because the paper placemats contained the menus and we were to circle the items that we wanted to eat, as well as the drinks. The servers came back to see if we had decided and tore off the menu column. The food that they served was standard café fare, salads, hot & cold sandwiches and soups. My mom and I got Panini’s and Christian had a salad. You could see how much the workers enjoyed being there and we enjoyed our meal.
The second city we visited was Aachen in Germany. Aachen is the westernmost city in Germany. There are many medieval & older structures throughout the old city center.
Aachner Printen is a specific type of pastry found in Aachen. The flat, graham-cracker looking pastries tasted to me like gingerbread. Some are covered with nuts, chocolate or marzipan. They sell the Printen in the rectangular bars or in shapes, as you can see below (owls, porcupines). My mom & I didn’t really care for the taste, but Christian thought it was okay. I think it is better for my health that I don’t like all the desserts in Europe.
This is the Aachen Cathedral (Kaiser Dom), ordered to be built by Charlemagne. It has served as the coronation church for many German kings and queens. The interior was absolutely stunning but unfortunately, we didn’t take any photos.