Germany had never figured prominently in any of our oft-revised travel plans. In the end, we ended up spending only 3 nights in Germany and were treating the country as a transit route with Amsterdam as our goal. We had very little time to do any sightseeing. I thought the ‘Disneyland Small World’ castle of Neuschwanstein would be a good first stop for a few hours. Gigi nor I had ever visited this castle. It is uber-picturesque. Neuschwanstein is located in Bavaria at the base of the Alps right on the German border with Austria. It had snowed two days earlier and Bavaria was blanketed under several inches of fresh, powdery snow. The skies were blue. We arrived at noon with just enough time to get lunch in one of the tourist hotels before taking the 40-minute walk up the hill to the castle and arrive in time for the 1:50 PM tour in English. As we drove into the small town of Hohenschwangau, we could see the castle standing on the hill, but the road up to it from the town ran under dense tree cover. Snowflakes were blowing off the tree branches and snow bombs were dropping periodically as we made our way up. We were surprised to see so many other tourists on a cold Thursday in January, but this castle is a major tourist destination. On the way up, the boys really wanted to just play in the snow, and my role was that of the spoiler. ‘Stay out of the snow!’ ‘If you get wet, you will be miserable!’ ‘No one else is throwing snowballs!’ I’m such a buzz-kill. They would have been happier if Gigi and I had left them outside to play in the snow. After the 35 minute tour and the 20 minute hike back down the hill, we were back on the road heading north. The town of Fussen, close by Neuschwanstein, looked very pretty and would have been worth a stroll through, but it was getting late, it was cold, and the boys were done with strolling for the day, especially if they could not throw snowballs at each other.