Yesterday in Wolfenbüttel was rainy and cold as usual, and I woke up very late, so I curtailed plans for a longer trip. And the market was beckoning, with chantrelles, smoked eels, white asparagus, organic brown bread, cured meats and sausages of every shape and color, cheeses of indescribable stinkiness. It was gorgeousness and gorgeosity.
After that, I decided to spend the day reading in the Bibliotek annex, which is housed in the 17th century armory across from the castle. Huge imposing building with walls 8 feet thick. So there I am happily reading Erasmus in the stacks upstairs, a lovely story of a doctor in Basel who ate pork during Lent, made a jerk of himself and was captured and condemned to death - for some reason for treason and blasphemy, for which they split his skull open and extracted his tongue from the inside. Lovely. And of course the time whiled away, but I had no plan to stay long. So around 1:30 I head downstairs. To find everything dark and shut. I mean literally closed down without warning and not a soul in sight.
My first vision was of spending the night, no - weekend there. No emergency exits. Only two massive bolted doors through which they used to wheel cannons. I tried phoning outside, with no luck, and certainly didnt want to call the police. After about a half an hour, I climbed up a book shelf, shimmied over to a window, which I managed to open and gingerly dropped down, probably no more than 6 feet, luckily.
And of course there were tourists gawking, and a brass band playing on the tower. My first instinct, like a proper criminal, was to get the hell out of there. And far. As far as I could. I actually went a few miles north of town and hiked in a gorgeous dense forest (Lechlumer Holz) for the next three hours or so. Sure that an investigation team would be tracking me.
A lovely little inn on the way back, with plenty of good beer, roast duck (my favorite food in the whole world) with red cabbage and potato poufs made everything better. As did a Jagermeister, which is made here, and not as I thought a think peppermint schnapps, but more like a Fernet, a green herbal bitter. Quite nice.
Next time I check the hours before going in.