die Au

If you travel to Bavaria or Austria, you’re likely to notice that every other town name ends in “-au“: Ramsau, Schönau am Königssee, Lindau, Oberammergau, Grainau, and the list could go on and on. That’s because, in this stony, mountainous region, an “au” represented one of the only locations level enough to use for grazing cattle or growing crops. Die Au is what we Texans call “bottomland,” a fertile low-lying meadow or patch of forest next to a body of water.

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