I left the clinic's breakfast around 8.30am to walk the 2km to Nidda without having my usual volume of food. I caught a train shortly after nine o'clock to what I thought was Glauberg where I intended to visit the nearby Celtic museum. My rail timetable referred to Glauberg-Stockheim, which is really Stockheim, a 3km walk from my destination. There is a different train company that operates a servce between Stockheim and Galuberg, but, as is often the case when traveling in unfamiliar places, you don't find out until it's too late. It's information that appears to not be known to the Tourist Office at Bad Salzhausen.

As is also often the case there are travel clouds with silver linings. I had just walked
into the centre of Glauberg when I stopped to look at a small map of the archeological park in which the Celtic Museum is located when a man approached me from his home across the street. I pointed to a brochure of the museum. He waved an arm and I pretended to understand his directions as I thanked him. I hadn't walked 40 metres in the direction of the museum when the same man pulled up in his car and waved me to get in. He drove me to the museum another couple of kilometres away. What a friendly gesture. He agreed to pose for a photograph.

The area where the museum is located is referred to as 'the Glauberg'. It was
occupied by the Celts about 2,500 years ago. This was well into the age of iron. Celts left no written records of their beliefs. They were influenced by other cultures when creating their own visual language, for example, when decorating practical items like jugs and swords. Around the Glauberg it is estimated they occupied enough land to grow crops to support 15,000 people and to support 3,000 head of cattle. At the site the bones of cattle, pigs, sheep and goats have been found. Barley and millet were their most important varieties of grain, and from pollen residues found in storage vessels its been determined that their drink of choice was mead wine fermented from honey and water. Celtic warriors reached Rome in 387BC and in the
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third century into Greece and Asia Minor, however, with the gradual conquest of western Europe by Rome in the second century independent Celtic communities disappeared. Excavations, as recent as 2004-2009 uncovered another twenty new settlements. Fascinating!

My next stop was Budingen, about ten minutes down the rail line where I looked over an 'historic village'. The town developed out of housing for courtiers and servants outside the castle and was protected by statutes and privileges. The castle, erected in the 12th century as a moated fortress for the Count zu Ysenburg and Budingen,
has been occupied continuously since 1258 by over twenty generations of Ysenburgs. The late middle ages was the high point of Budingen's growth when the early 14th century wall around the town was replaced by a new fortfication more than two kilometres long with 22 towers. It is regarded nowadays as one of the best examples of the way defence architecture changed as a result of the invention of firearms. The town's houses are of the half timber and plaster/masonry type, and well preserved. Otherwise, the buildings are of stone. The only surviving gate, now called the “Jerusalem Gate”, the name of which is most likely derived from religious refugees who settled in the town in the 18th century, was built in 1503 with a drawbridge, to protect the easily accessible western side. These days you continue along the street that leads from the railway station and you will end up at these gates.

It was a great day, but I have to say, an exhausting one.

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