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Pilgrimage under one hat - on the way with Sandra


Bavarian Swabian Way of St. James  

Stage 4:  Donauwörth - Holzen Monastery

Old town Donauwörth

Thursday 9th July 2020        

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Day 4 is shown here.

Stick and hat  look good on her, she was good-natured!

I ate well and slept  and breakfast.

With the bag packed, I move on to the south.

My destination for the day is the beautifully situated Holzen Monastery.

Weather forecast: Hot, Hot, Hot



I already had with one of the employees there

A very nice one in advance of my booking

Telephone contact.

The monastery offers namely for his

Guests have quite exclusive overnight accommodations

in his hotel  at.

The overnight prices are accordingly

at a high level.

For the pilgrims to St. James, however, the Holzen monastery offers

a room in an ultra-modern extra guest house

at a very reasonable price.

You have the Pilgerpas only on arrival s

present and then get the special conditions.

This is how the monastery deserves itself in my eyes

clearly the predicate "pilgrim-friendly" and five

Stars in the yet to be established "TripleP-PilgerPortalPlus" .


Shortly after Donauwörth I meet Maria. Athletic  she comes towards me on the bike and then descends at my height. She reveals herself to be a pilgrim and tells me about her pilgrimage last year, which took her 53 days away from the front door in Donauwörth via Kempten in the Allgäu and Switzerland to France. We immediately have a common theme and they my admiration. We'll stand for half an hour and talk to each other. Actually, we would have had a lot more to tell each other. I don't know whether it is due to the pandemic times or just my lack of spontaneity in the situation, in any case we missed exchanging our contact details and I regret this shortly after our ways parted.

A loud bird circles over me

Lost in thought, I continue my hike. Today it's pretty even. It goes along the Schmutter river, past meadows, pastures and grain fields. Every now and then there are even a few strollers. However, the further I get away from the city, the more lonely it becomes.

Then I observe a large Bundeswehr transport helicopter, which apparently at low altitude over the fields - so also over me - a few flight maneuvers, for what purpose  whatever, does. It circles over my head several times and makes a good rotor noise.  Somehow I feel observed and uncomfortable. When he stands almost vertically in the air above me for a few moments,  I can't help but imagine how a few soldiers in storm gear would slide down to me on lowered ropes and surround me.  Have seen "Black Hawk Down" one too often.

Nothing else happens, but it's still somehow uncomfortable. I step up a gear and the helicopter turns and disappears.  

The nice thing about this day's stage is that you can see the Holzen Monastery from afar on a hill. The unpleasant thing about it - it just takes longer than it looks before you're there.

It's damn warm, my socks smoke a lot, my clothes are stuck to my body again as I get closer and closer to the monastery. A few hundred meters from the finish there is a sign to a natural Kneipp facility. Oh how wonderful, I think in memory of my Wemdingen experience, and follow the path about 50 meters to the left into the botany. Now get out of your hot boots and cool your swollen feet would be great.

Which word begins like Schmutter?

Even before I see anyone, I hear voices. Then I'll break like a golden stag  through the undergrowth and first see two bicycles leaning against a tree. A little further away, in the undergrowth of the bank, stands a woman in a bathing suit who is about to jump into the muddy, perhaps waist-high, Schmutter. To her right is a man in shorts. At my discretion  After a short water test he uses his foot to distance himself from imitating the woman. She then asks him to follow her out of the water, but somehow the man can't bring himself to bear, which I can't blame him for. Neither the overgrown bank area nor the water itself looks particularly inviting.

I greet you in a friendly way and step up to the natural Kneipp facility, which is apparently fed with the muddy water from the river. The area has apparently not been cleaned for a long time and is totally dirty. I'm disappointed. No, I wouldn't put my feet in there now.  What a pity.


Got the impression that they both feel disturbed by me during their break, but now I'm already there. I still try to start a conversation with the bicycle couple and am interested in their cycling plans, but somehow the woman has the handbrake on. It does not fit. Well, then not. I take a little refreshment, then I withdraw again and continue on my way.

After the final ascent to the monastery mountain (why are monasteries always on a mountain?)  I get this about 20 minutes later. I'm done, but there.

The great Holzen Monastery

When I have recovered a little physically, my mind develops the leisure to take in the beauty of the place.  I am totally enthusiastic about the location, the monastery buildings, the outdoor area with its lovingly laid out herb garden and the fruit trees, my accommodation in the guest house, the friendliness of the staff and, last but not least, the food. Did I forgot something?

Small gestures always have a big impact. I found a lovingly designed, fragrant lavender bag in my room. I hold it to my nose and take  a deep breath of lavender scent.

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