German words have a reputation for being long, and at times very expressive. Two of my descriptive favorites are Zahnfleisch (literally ‘tooth meat’ or ‘gums’) and Schneebesen (which literally translates to ‘snow broom’ but means ‘whisk.’)
For a scribe who’s been in Germany for the past ten years, there isn’t much of a better way to reconnect with her American roots than to visit the wild, wild west.
That’s just what Shawn and I did exactly one year ago when we spent the day playing in Virginia City, Nevada…
Once a mining boomtown, Virginia City previously claimed the title of the richest city in the United States. This was due to the Comstock Lode silver strike that occurred there in the late 1850s. The strike transformed prospectors into millionaires, virtually overnight.
It’s said that Virginia City is the ‘birthplace’ of Mark Twain, since this is where the former Territorial Enterprise reporter Samuel Clemens had the maiden usage of his now-famous pen name. He would go on to continue using his pen name during his Tramp Abroad, which included an extended stop in Heidelberg, Germany. In an age devoid of the airplane, he sure managed to get around!
Legend also has it that Twain was mugged in Virginia City. It was later discovered that the ‘mugging’ was conducted by Twain’s friends in order to provide him writing fodder.
Where in the World?
Photography & text © Tricia A. Mitchell . All Rights Reserved.