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Lady of the Rhine, Part 2: Chapter 9 - Quest to Worms, Searching for the Key, Faun Concert

Friday, 3 April 2009
Worms, Germany

The adventurers got off to a late start on their travels as they were taking a road trip in Lady Vanessa's motor carriage to "Worms" to see the mythical band "Faun" in hopes that the music will shed some light about this "sacred" key they are questing for. Along the road trip down the autobahn to Worms, many scenic farmyards, castles, and cathedrals loomed along the landscape giving the quest a medieval twist. The adventurers in search of the sacred key travelled hours to the Dragon city of "Worms", Germany. Medieval cathedral welcoming them as they made their way to its base where the Jugend-herberge was located (youth hostel). Brilliant and enormous building dedicated to International travellers of all ages. Alas, since Lady Vanessa is from the Rhine and not an international guest, she had to purchase a 20 Euro membership on top of the 18.50 Euro room fee. The party did however score their own room with bunk beds, private bath/shower/toilette. After unloading their bags they went in search for the key, and keys they did find. The city of Worms emblem is a key and it was everywhere. Messages clued the party for answers to their queries as they visited each of the city dragons for answers. They visited at least 8 of the city dragons.

The city key in the zodiac wheel fountain clueing us to follow the dragon slayer in his tale for answers

The dragons and the zodiac wheel fountain led clues to the fact that we needed to learn about the dragon slayers of the city and the Nibelungens; and to listen closely to the lyrics of Faun. After exploring the churches and cathedrals, zodiac wheel, and dragons; the adventurers were famished and sought refuge in Schmitts pub for some German cuisine. Steak was had all around. Sir Thomas Leaf had the rumpsteak flamed in Pernod whit omelette hash browned potatoes and a great salad. The Lady's had a rumpsteak roast with fries and salad. They all were in awe of the delicious and excellent food presented before them. After a gelato, the adventurers Sir Thomas Leaf, Princess Breanna, and Lady Vanessa of the Rhine; attended the Faun concert at the Lincoln theater.

Knowledgable dragons with answers

On top of the quest was the key referred to in the Faun video "Egil Saga". This was the unplugged tour, so the explorers got a wonderful traditional German story telling medieval concert with fabulous music and instruments presented. They were ecstatic and brought tears to Sir Thomas Leaf's eyes who is a big fan of theirs. Revealtions in the folk tales in the stories as presented by lead singer Oliver Sa Tyr; Elisabeth Pawelke, Fiona Ruggeberg, Rudiger Maul, and Niel Mitra manning the cd table since it was an unplugged concert and he does synthesizer. Simply A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.

Sir Thomas Leaf was melted in sheer pleasure. Sir Thomas Leaf purchased their cd, dvd, and poster; with dvd signed by all members of the band. Afterwards, they met the band and discovered they are coming to "Faerieworlds" to perform this year, even though they wouldn't be at "Trolls et Legends" in Belgium. Simply phenomenal. Tired and in pure happiness, the adventurers returned to the hostel to go right to sleep with amazing dreams on their minds.

Faun in concert in Worms, Germany

Princess Brea at a Restplatz

Now that's a mobile house (probably shoppe for a festival)
Parked outside a "Restplatz" enroute to Worms

Vanessa outside the Restplatz

WORMS, Germany

The fabled city of Worms is a city in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, on the Rhine River. In 2004 its population was 85,829. The city was originally called Borbetomagus by the Celts who established it first (meaning "settlement in a watery area"), and it may very well be the "Oldest City in Germany" (of course Trier and Cologne are also fighting for this title). The city was captured and fortified by the Romans under Drusus in 14 BC and named Augusta Vangionum for this garrison but still held the name Borbetomagus. The Roman garrison was developed into a small town with a regularized Roman street plan, forum, temples for Jupiter/Juno/Minerva (upon which of course was built the Cathedral later) and Mars. Roman inscriptions/altars/votive offerings are preserved in the town's archaeological museum along with one of Europe's largest collections of Roman glass. From 411-413, the Gunther king of the Burgundians set himself up as the puppet-emperor, the unfortunate Jovinus and it was then that the city becam the chief city of the first kingdom of the Burgundians. Overwhelmed in 437 by Hun mercenaries hired by the Roman general Aëtius to put an end to Burgundian raids, in an epic disaster that provided the source for the Nibelungenlied. Borbetomagus was transformed into the Latin name of "Vormatia" in the 6th century. The Roman Catholics took over Worms as early as 346, but definitely by 614 AD. During the Frankish Empire it became an important palatine of Charlemagne (Karl der Grosse) with which came the building of many administrative palaces and many famous bishops were placed here, most notably Burchard of Worms. After the Wormser Dom (Worms Cathedral) was built over the ancient Roman temple; it became dedicated to St. Peter and became one of the finest examples of Romanesque architecture in Germany. Worms also houses four other Romanesque churches as well as the old city fortifications which were preserved, making Worms Germany's second in Romanesque architecture next to Cologne. Worms was very prosperous during the High Middle Ages receiving many privileges from King Henry IV as early as 1074 becoming a Reichsstadt - independent of a local territory and responsible only to the Emperor. Many famous events took place here within the history of the Holy Roman Empire (1122 Concordant of Worms signed; 1495 reformation of the disintegrating Imperial Circle Estates of the Reichsreform (Imperial Reform); 1521 Reichstag (Diet of Worms) ended with Edict of Worms where Martin Luther was declared an outlaw for refusal of recanting his religious beliefs; first complete edition of the Bible into Modern English was achieved in 1526 by William Tyndale and secretly printed here). 1689 during the 9 Year's War the city was sacked by King Louis XIV of France, but only occupied for a few weeks. 1743 Treaty of Worms was signed ending the Second Silesian war between Prussia and Austria. 1792 city was occupied by troops of the French First Republic during the French Revolutionary Wars and in 1801 was annexed into the First French Empire. 1815 Worms was passed to the Grand Duchy of Hesse as accorded by the Congress of Vienna. World War II dumped 1,100 tons of bombs on the city by the Royal Air Force in two attacks (Feb 21; March 18 in 1945) which destroyed 39 % of the town's developed areas; killing 239; 6,490 buildings severely damaged or destroyed; and putting 35,000 homeless. Post war the inner city was rebuilt in modern style; and became part of the new state of Rhineland-Palatinate. Since Worms is the location to the events of the ancient German Nibelungenlied sagas, the city houses a multimedia Nibelungenmuseum to honor this fact. In addition, each year, the fables are celebrated with a annual festival in front of the "Dom" (Cathedral of Worms) to bring back pre-Christian period atmosphere. The city is located on the Rhine River's west bank between the cities of Ludwigshafen and Mainz. Towards the north is where the Pfrimm tributary empties into the Rhine and is on the southern edge of the Eisbach or "Ice Stream" that also flows into the Rhine. In the modern era, it is an industrial city for metal goods, chemicals, and is famed for the original "Liebfrauenstift-Kirchenstück" epotoponym for the Liebfraumilch wine. The city was also a former center for Judaism where the Jewish community established itself in the late 10th century erecting their first synagogue in 1034. The Jewish Cemetery here dates from the 11th c. and is the oldest in Europe. The 1175 Synagogue known as the "Rashi Shul" was reconstructed after its desecration on Kristallnacht as the oldest in Germany. It is here that the rabbis for the first time explicitly prohibited polygamy. In 1938, the Kristallnacht took place destroying most of the Jewish Quarter, and as since, Worms never re-established a recognizable Jewish Community. The City is very honoring of its pre-Christian past with the Dragon slaying stories and iconography; preserving much Pagan art and symbolism, including modern art dragons posted throughout the city. Worms is one of my favorite small German cities that I hope to explore further in the future. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

Pictures from around Worms:

Jugendgästehaus Worms

Jugendgästehaus Worms
(Youth Hostel) * Betriebsleitung Andrea Klauck * Dechaneigasse 1 * 67547 Worms * Telefon 06241/25780 * Telefax 06241/27394 * worms@diejugendherbergen.de

A very spacious and charming Hostelling International hostel right in the heart of the old town of Worms. Enormous building, with two dining halls, a snack bar, outer courts, and private rooms for groups of 3 or 4. Rates for members are 18.50 Euro/night making extremely affordable lodging. Located right across the street from the Dom, and infront of the town's Archaeological museum, the hostel couldn't be better placed. The staff is friendly, rooms clean, and our stay on 4/3/09 was most excellent. Thank you! Rating: 5 stars out of 5.


SCHMITTS (Tavern/Restaurant)

Address is believed to be "Richard-Knies-Str. 87, Worms - +49 6241 95813-0" but unfortunately my German is not so good and it was hard to search for online. This Tavern is located a few streets away from the Lincoln Theater in old town.

A very quaint European tavern charm with delicious dishes and exquisite cooking. The service was friendly and very good. My daughter stated it as the best food she was served dining out since she's been in Germany for the last week. Memorabilia and multiple clocks decorate the walls. Tavern tables with eliquent settings. The Rump steaks were all very delicious, and I quite liked the one flamed in Pernod. The salads were decorative and tasty. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.




* April 3, 2009 at the Lincoln Theater in Worms, Germany

I travelled long and wide to see "Faun" as they have become my most favorite band next to "Qnthal". Timing was perfect as I was travelling to Germany in a adventure-packed modern-story-drama (a fantasical story tale concocted with some fantasy based on true facts and histories, with names changed to make them sound more "mythological and medieval" known as the "Lady of the Rhine" series, part 2 - Quest for the Sacred Key; that was inspired by Faun's music video "Egil Saga". So a trip was taken to see this fabulous band, several hours car journey from Dusseldorf and a 9+ air journey over seas from America. While not the sole reason for the trip to the Fatherland, the band was certainly an inspiration and motivator for the travels at this time. It's funny as I told the band's lead singer we travelled from America to see them, he laughed and didn't believe it. Little did he know the truth behind that, since they play a role in pseudo-fictional fantasy tale of a travelogue. The name of the band comes from the Ancient Greek-Roman mythology term for the Deity "Faunus" or "Pan" which is represented as a forested spirit and is why Oliver Pade, one of the main singers, is nicknamed "Satyr" as it is very related to "Faunus".

Faun is a extremely talented German Pagan Folk / Darkwave band that was formed in 2002 by Oliver "SaTyr" Pade, Elisabeth Pawelke, Fiona Rüggeberg and Birgit Muggenthaler. The same year they released their first album "Zaubersprüche" which included the guest musician Niel Mitra who later joined the band as the only member playing electronic instruments. They were joined by percussionist Rüdiger Maul in 2004 replacing Birgit who joined the folk-rock band "Schandmaul". They lost Elisabeth Pawelke in 2008 as she went to focus her studies in classical song in Basel, Switzerland and was succeeded by Sandra Elflein. Faun takes extreme pride and admiration in the use and incorporation of "ancient" & Medieval instruments that they are quite well known for such as the Celtic Harp, Swedish Nyckelharpa, Hurdy Gurdy, Bagpipes, Cittern, Flutes, Drums, and assortment of stringed instruments; merging them with modern inspiration and in some instances, synthesizing. Singing of old tales, epics, and sagas are the heart of their music incorporating their very skilled grasp of many languages they use in their music, including German, Latin, Modern German, Middle High German, Old Icelandic, West Low German, Hungarian, Finnish, Ladino, and Scandinavian. The band is very proudly inspired and dedicated to "nature" bringing back much of the lost Pagan, Classical, Medieval, and Renaissance flavor of high-admiration for nature, mythology, folklore, and woodland spirits/faeries. Oliver Pade said at the 2004 Summer Darkness festival in Utrecht, Netherlands "We don't know ourselves what kind of music we play, so we call it paganfolk". Historical and folk tunes blended in world music with a folk twist, ranging from melancholic ballads, ancient Perso-Arab melodies, Swedish nyckelharpa, Middle High German lyrics, to exuberant dances like the Brittanic An Dro, and Medieval/Goth club tunes.

Faun consists of Oliver Sa Tyr who does vocals, bosouki, nyckelharpa, celtic harp, and the jews harp; Sandra Elflein who also does vocals, and plays violin; Fiona Rüggeberg also one of the important vocals, blended with her recorders, whistles, bagpipes, and seljefloit; Rüdiger Maul the percussionist brings in the tar, riq, davul, panriqello, darabukka, timba, gaxixi and many other percussion instruments; while Niel Mitra as the only electronic instrument player spices the stage up with his sequencer, sampler, synthesizer, FL Studio, Buzz, Logic Audio, tascam us 224, boss dr 202, Korg Alpha, granular synthesis, folder synthesis, feedbacks, and sounds he has taken from nature and everyday life. The Former members as mentioned were Elisabeth Pawelke who sang vocals and played the hurdy gurdy (the instrument of which I believe Sandra Elflein has taken over); and Birgit Muggenthaler who did whistles, bagpipes, shawm, and vocals. Albums produced by this writing: Zaubersprüche (2002); Licht (2004); Lichtbilder (DVD, 2004); Renaissance (2005); Totem (2007); "Ornament" (DVD: 2007); FAUN & The Pagan Folk Festival - Live feat. Sieben & In Gowan Ring (2008); and Unplugged (2009). They have performed at over 450 locations, festivals, concert halls, and churches throughout Europe including but not limited to Mèra Luna Festival (Germany), Elf Fantasy Fair (Netherlands), Wave Gotik Treffen  (Germany),  Fiesta Celtica Biella (Italy), Zillo Open Air, Folkwoods Folkfestival (Netherlands), Arena van Vletingen (Belgium), Savari Karneval 2005 (Hungary), Palladius/Barcelona (Spain), Estragon (Italy). Between the distributor Curzweyhl / Rough Trade (Germany) and the Label "Noir Records" (USA) they have sold more than 80,000 CDs worldwide. Also their latest studio CD "TOTEM" reached rank 78 of the german (media control) album charts, rank 6 of the german alternativ charts and rank 1 of the german medieval charts.





Some of the Dragons of Worms (Modern Art)


Worms Dom

Annually a trip to Europe to begin a mystical, magical quest. The tales to come in the next two months are a blending of truth and fantasy, merged together in a incredible journey of continents ... this year, LoTR The Sequel will begin .... "Lady of the Rhine, Quest of the Key". The people and places are real, some of the mythology is real, but some fictitious titles and descriptions will be added to the story for a novel experience.

The Sequel: will take place from Sir Thomas Leaf's journey to the Old World, to the Land of the Rhine, explorations around Germany and ending up at the Trolls et Legends Faire in Mons, Belgium. Be prepared for the adventure, start from the beginning ....

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