Thursday, October 28, 2021

A Hanover showdown!

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Prince Ernst August of Hanover and his son, Hereditary Prince Ernst August have been ordered to appear in the Hanover regional court on November 25, reports NDR, a German broadcaster.

The elder Prince Ernst August is demanding the return of Schloss Marienburg and Herrenhausen, along with other properties that he had given to his son, Ernst August in 2004 and 2007.  

The transition of ownership was done largely for financial and tax reasons, but now, the 67-year-old head of the house wants the property back.

He has accused his elder son of being "grossly ungrateful."  The lawsuit has been pending since last year.  He also charges his son as having "seriously violated the rights, legal interests, and interests of the plaintiff."   Ernst August Senior also complained in the suit that he "operated the removal as the plaintiff as a member of the board of the family foundation.   

Ernst August, Jr., is also accused by his father of trying to take total control of the family property and has been accused of illegally appropriating works of art" that belonged to the family, which were on display at the Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttl and the Historischen Museum Hannover. 

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The 38-year-old prince denies the allegations, stating they are "false," but he refused to comment as he wanted to "protect his father."  He also stressed that the family foundation approved the transfer of the property to him.  Ernst August also wanted to sell Schloss Marienburg to Lower Saxony for one Euro, but after his father complained the deal fell through. The castle and its inventory were then transferred to the Stiftung Schloss Marienburg.

In June the younger prince reached an agreement with the Lower Saxony, the State Museum in Hanover, and the Marienburg Castle Foundation to restore the castle and have en complete inventory of the artworks and other items.  The Landmsuem in Hanover has already acquired 143 of the most important paintings. The museum will keep the paintings on display at the Schloss Marienburg

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 It is expected the castle'ss renovation and restoration will be completed by 2030.,ernstaugust190.html,ernstaugust190.html

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Brunch at the Palace

 The official photos from October 16th's Brunch at the Elisabeta Palace.

The photos were taken by Daniel Angelescu.

all photos @DanielAngelescu/ Romanian Royal House

Just 5 guests - all from outside Romania, including Poland, Denmark, Japan and the US (me)

Alma likes me.

the tour was before we went outside

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Final day in Bucharest


It rained during my entire visit to Bucharest .. no really, it rained every day and night.   October 16 was my final day in Romania.  Breakfast at the hotel before getting ready to get a cab to the Elisabeta Palace for brunch.  HM Margareta, Custodian of the Crown, invited the five international recipients of honors to a brunch at the family's residence.  I last visited the Elisabeta Palace in January 2020 in honor of Her Majesty's 30th anniversary of her first visit to the country.

The brunch was held outside in a tent - and social distancing was maintained.  A lovely selection of Romanian dishes and an appearance by the family dog, Alma.  

Brunch was over at 2 pm and an Uber back to the Hotel.  I changed into more comfortable clothes and went for a walk.  It was raining but ... I wanted to visit Cismigiu Gardens, a city park on Boulevard Queen Elisabeth, about a ten-minute walk from the Hilton Garden Inn.  I had visited the park in 2011 but wanted to go again to the Memorial to American soldiers who had died in Romania during the second world war.

The rain came down but I did have an umbrella,   I also found the memorial to the 374 Americans who died on active service.   

My final meal in Romania was on the aptly named Umbrella Street (a nickname) just off Calei Victorei to have dinner at Pizza Coliseum.  I chose a mozzarella and prosciutto pizza, although the prosciutto looked more like ham - and a Stella as the restaurant was out of Romanian beer .. and no I was not going to have a Miller (also on the menu) despite my accent.  

Queen Helen owned several Romanian national dresses, which she took with her into exile.  The costumes are in very good condition and on display.  Princess Marie wore to an engagement

Queen Elisabeth, consort of Carol I

Carol and Elisabeth's monogram

the guest book

Deathmask for Princess Maria of Romania (1870-1874) only child of King Carol  I and Queen Elisabeta

Princess Elisabeth and Prince Wilhelm of Wied.  Elisabeth, also known as Carmen Sylva, was the consort of King Carol I 

King Michael's chair from King George VI's coronation in 1937.  Michael, then Crown Prince, represented his father King Carol II

HM Margareta's office

The suit and coat Michael wore when he married Princess Anne of Bourbon-Parma

HM Margareta's wedding dress (same gown as her mother's) and HRH Prince Radu's suit

A life-size statue was unveiled in Sinaia on the 100th anniversary of Michael's birth

Alma, who is very friendly

Posing for animal crackers

and then it was time to leave ... a great time 

Daniel Angelescu, the official photographer

On my way to Cismigiu Gardens

Romanian ducks ... Mallards

The memorial to the 374 Americans killed during the second world war in Romania

Umbrella street (officially Pasajul Victoria)

I had to be up at 3:30 a.m. on Sunday as the car to the airport was arriving at 4.  I managed to sleep until 2 when I woke up and turned on the TV.  Everything was packed and ready to go when the wake-up calls came from the hotel and a friend at home.  I told my friend this is what 3:30 in the morning looks like as we were on Facetime.  I was in the lobby at 3:45 and got my to-go breakfast to eat on the way to the airport.

A long line at Lufthansa for the flight to Munich.  My original flight on BA to London was canceled so BA put me on the flight to Munich and then another flight to London.  I had to show my negative Covid test three times before London: at the check-in desks in Bucharest and Munich.  After the Munich check-in, I had to walk ten feet to another desk (I think it was the German health department) for another look at the certificate.   

Had enough time to purchase several German magazines, which I rarely get to see in the US nowadays.   Arrive in Terminal 2 at Heathrow, followed the signs for Flight Connections and a shuttle to Terminal 5.  

The first stop, the BA desk to check-in for my flight to Washington, D.C.  Show my Covid test result (which is needed to let me into the USA).  The BA lady tells me the certificate expired several hours earlier.  

Say what?   It is three days, ma'am, not 72 hours, for flights to the US.  My face drains of any color I had in it.  Petrified for a few minutes.  The BA lady sitting next to her says she's right, it's okay.

I smile, say thank you, and move on to security.  I grabbed several trays for handbag, Ipad, Carrybag, and a sealed duty-free bag from Romania.  Three jars of Strawberry jam (by appointment to the Crown),  I go through the machine, all clear.  I wait on the other side for my items.  The handbag, the Ipad, and the carry bag come down on the good side.  The bag with the three jars of jam is on the scary side.  

I was told the jam had tested positive for explosives.  Say what?  Three jars of strawberry jam?  Explosives?

Noooooo.  The jars get put into a machine.  I ask if the jars are being nuked?  I am told "No."   An alarm goes off ... The color that had returned to my face after I got my boarding pass was gone again.  A few minutes later, the security officer hands me the bag with the jam.  Everything is all right.  

I said:  the jam has been cleared of all charges." She replied: yes. 

The Jam is free!  I put the bag into my carry bag and headed into Terminal 5.  I had a 5.5-hour layover.  Bought two bottles of Baileys and several boxes of Fortnum & Mason tea at the Duty-Free and at Smith's, I loaded up on Maltesers!!!!!!  I also enjoyed a good meal and a Camden Ale beer at Gordon Ramsay's, which is on the second floor of the terminal.   

Suffice to say I was getting very tired and sleepy and all I wanted to do was settle into my aisle seat for the flight back home.  

All of my flights left and arrived on time.  No lines at Dulles.  Got my bag quickly and headed out of the door where a friend was waiting to take me home.  

I had an awesome time, and I want to return as there is so much more to see in Romania, which is a stunningly beautiful country.