These foothills do not look so imposing, until one must do three up-and-overs in the course of a day. The views from the crest are nice, but it is a long slog up the hillsides. The route today was a mix of grass-paths through forest, logging roads, and farm roads through fields and meadows, plus a couple farm villages.
These small farming towns are doing well. The houses are all 3 or 4 stories, stuccoed thermal brick with tile roofs, in good repair or recently constructed. I have seen at least one home under construction in nearly every village (they use cranes, so easy to spot). The barns are wooden and quite large (this is dairy country). And, judging from the enormous stacks of wood, they must heat the barns with wood-fired stoves (I’m sure the cows appreciate that).
The signs here tell a story. I’ve seen as many “Altgeld ist Bargeld” (old gold is cash money) as I used to see “See Rock City” painted on the sides of barns, when I was growing up. Also I have seen quite a few signs encouraging support for a 40 (euro) cents per liter as a “fair price” to the farmer. This works out to USD 2.00 a gallon.
Since my lodgings tonight are similar to a suburban motel (think Best Western but not a chain), I am indulging in some TV watching – in German of course. German cooking shows are a real trip.