Wales, 1985

Wales, May, 1985

Jeanne, Bob and I flew to London, rented a car and set out for Wales, where we would meet our friends from Berlin, Gisela and Wolfgang. They were also bringing another couple, Gisela and Peter. Our objective was to explore Wales, but especially the ‘Little Trains of Wales,’ which are narrow-gauge railroads, used previously for hauling, but now Golden Pheasant Hotel--Nice Breakfastare really just volunteer-operated tourist trains. Wolfgang has a special interest in trains, so we shall see what that is all about.

On the way to Wales, we stopped for a night at Burford, King Henry VIII's Barber went to this Churchstaying at the Golden Pheasant Hotel. We were so impressed with this little hotel, as they set the breakfast table for three, especially for us, and gave us all free newspapers to read with our morning coffee.

We explored Burford some, discovering a plaque at the church that said that King Henry VIII’s barber was from Burford and was buried here.
The Churchyard Where the Barber Was BuriedThe barber was an especially trusted person, as every day the barber would be holding a straight-edged razor to the neck of the king—which might make a king nervous, one would think.

WalesThe next day we arrived in Porth Penrhyn, experiencing the exotic spellings of place-names that one encounters in Wales. We pushed on to Fairbourne where Gisela had rented a house. Although we really didn’t have explicit Fairbournedirections as to where we would meet, this was a small town and we assumed it would be self-evident. Well, it wasn’t! We booked rooms at the main hotel in town, and soon Gisela showed up there Looking For the Others
looking for us. It turned out that we stayed at the hotel, because the rented house was not big enough to accommodate all of us. When we were all united, we celebrated with a beer!

Together At Last in the Hotel

img757We took our first trainride on the Fairbourne Railroad—an ‘out and back’ excursion. It Fairbourne Railway
was very small but charming.

On the Boat--Bob and WolfieThe next day we all took a boat to

Barmouth,Taking a Boat to Barmouth which was across an inlet from Faribourne. The weather and scenery were beautiful!

Another ride on a railroad—this time the Ffestiniog from Porth Madog Harbor to Blaenau Ffestiniog. This is quite a famous one of the Little Trains. It runs for
Fairbourne Railway14 miles each way.

Festinog RR

Ffestinog RR

From here we could continue on to see the slate mines. There were piles of slate tailings from the mining industry from long ago.

Slate Mine

Slate TailingsWolfie had a detailed map which allowed us Stileto take a long hike to the Abergavenny Castle Harlech Castle
ruins, walking through sheep pastures, going over stiles, climbing over fences, etc.

We continued on to St. Mary’s Priory, which was a St. Mary's Priory 13. C.country church built in the 13th century. img821From here we came to Dolgellau Falls.

The town of Harlech and Harlach Castle wereHarlech Castle next on our ‘outing list.’ This is a huge castle, which we explored quite fully. There is a img858plaque in town, which explained that a more recent Lord Harlech had laid the stone of that house in 1908.

At Harlech CastleWe explored Portmeirion, a img873bizarre town with elaborate Italianate architecture. It was created by a Welsh architect, Sir Clough Williams-Ellis, who fulfilled a childhood dream of building a village “to my own fancy on my own chosen site.”img878

From there we drove on to view Mt. Snowdon, the highest point in Wales. The countryside Mt. Snowdonimg891was very beautiful; we took walks to view the ‘just opening’ rhododendrons that grow wild on the hills. The pinkish hue on some hills would become bright pink in a few days. Then it was Tea Time in Snowdonia. We often stopped for tea on our travels through Wales.Tea Time

One of our walks brought us to Gelert’s Grave. The Faithful Hound of Llywellynlegend was that in Beddgelert, Llywelyn the Great left his faithful hound, Gelert, to guard his infant son while he went Beddegelerthunting. When he returned he was horrified to see the cradle overturned, and Gelert covered in blood. Thinking that the dog had attacked his son, he slew the hound, only to then find his son unharmed under the overturned cradle. Nearby there was a dead wolf, which Gelert had killed to protect the child. Present day promoters of tourism had built a mound of stones with a plaque to commemorate this event.

That night the seven of us celebrated with a party at their rented house. Interestingly, we saw the sun setting in one direction and the full moon coming up in the other. Jeanne, Bob The Sun Goes Down...and I had brought a couple bottles of wine to the party, which we had bought at the hotel. They were soon gone, in spite of them being some of the worst bottles of wine that I have...And The Moon Comes Upever drunk. Still this seemed to be the only option in this little town for keeping the party going, so Gisela and Wolfgang made a run back over to the hotel to buy some more. We were dancing, singing, and having such a good time that we didn’t pay any attention to the quality of the wine!

Welsh Hyland RR

Another excursion took us to the Hysbysrwydd, Siop and Parc. (Can you pronounce the name of this place? I can’t either!) From there we rode on the Welsh Hysbysrwydd Shop and ParkHyland Railroad. These little trains are such fun to explore. They are mostly all run by volunteers, who give their time, expertise, and money to keep them going!

Not far from here we encountered an accident that had just happened. A man had somehow run into the front of a shop!An Accident!!

Investiture Setting

Another castle—this time Caernarfon, the site of Prince Charles’ investiture as Prince of Wales in 1960. This is truly an impressive
large castle with a lot of history.Jeanne, Bob, Gisela, Wolfie-Caernarfon Caslte

At this point our
friends from Berlin departed for home, and Jeanne, Bob and I carried on alone.

Another train–
the Snowdon Mountain Vale of Reidol RRRailroad—gave us a chance to admire the scenery hereabouts.

From here we explored two towns—Tenby and then Swansea,which is really a city.

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Next was a stop at Tintern Abbey.  It is a beautiful ruin showing former days of glory!Tintern Abby

Caerleon -Roman Amphitheatre- 2nd C.Another stop along the way toward London was the ancient Roman amphitheater of Caerleon  from the 2nd century .  It was interesting to be able to make out the old seats.

On the way back to London, we went a bit out of our way to see Winchester with its wonderful Winchester Cathedralcathedral. (Remember the song, ‘Winchester Cathedral’?) Inside the cathedral we discovered Jane Austen’s grave—she died in 1817, and further down the street was a house Jane Austen's Housewhere she had lived her last days.

On to the London airport. While we were waiting to board our plane, we were delayed a bit while members of the British Royal Family (Princess Alexandra, I think) were being met and greeted. They were whisked away in a fancy car with flags flying. And soon we were jetting back across the Atlantic and home.img030

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#3 (final) England, May 11, 1980

Our next destination was Portsmouth with Lord Nelson’s HMS Victory. We toured the shipLord Nelson's HMS Victoryand discussed afterwards, that we needed a plan to reconnect if we got separated, which we had done around Dorset. Somehow, we didn’t do it——and when we left Portsmouth, we DID get separated.

Royal Pavillion
We stopped off at Arundel Castle, another BIG house! Then we journeyed on to Brighton, with no sign of the other three. We stayed overnight here and toured the Brighton Palace, that Victorian meringue of Asian fantasies. Interestingly, our car had Bob’s suitcase and my suitcase was in the other car.

The next day we thought that maybe if Burt waited out on the highway he could catch the other car and we could be together again. Although he waited for about three hours, he never did see their car.

While Burt was waiting on the highway, Jeanne and I went into the very grand Grand Hotel to have tea. It was early in the day so nobody was in the large bar area. Jeanne asked the maitre’d if we could have tea, and he nodded yes, and gestured for us to go in. We seated ourselves in the first area (we were alone) and didn’t see any wait staff. Thinking we were in the wrong area of the large bar, Jeanne decided to ask the maitre’d if we should sit in another area, and he said, “Fine!” We still waited some more and still no wait service. Now Jeanne thought it would be nice to sit by the window, but not being sure of getting
wait service, she again went to ask the maitre’d if it would be OK to sit by the window. An exasperated maitre’d waved his arms and said, “It doesn’t matter, Madame!!!” punctuating img172each word with elaborate gestures of his arms.

When Burt returned from the highway with no luck spotting our friends we pressed on. In Eastbourne we saw Brits playing boules on a beautiful lawn; further along we came to the place where during the Battle of Dunkirk inDunkirk-World War II France, the British, and other Allied forces were evacuated during World War II. Every boat available was pressed into service to cross the channel and save the soldiers. 338,000 men escaped aboard 861 boats.

img179And there were the White Cliffs of Dover! Of course we were old enough to remember the sentimental World War II song about them.

We stopped to see the site of the Battle of Hastings, and the ruins of the old Hastings Castle.Canterbury

And soon we were in Canterbury. This city, was founded around 200 AD by the Romans, later became the capital of the Saxon kingdom of Kent. When St. Augustine came to England in 597 AD, his base of operations was here. After Thomas Becket was killed here, it became the most important pilgrimage center in northern Europe. This inspired Geoffrey Chaucer to write his “Canterbury Tales,” which I remember reading in Canterbury CathedralFreshman English in school. It is still a town with many students.

The Canterbury Cathedral is spectacular edifice with every nook and cranny boasting some historic story. One suchThomas Becket Died Hereis the place where Thomas Becket was killed, and is the most sacred place in the cathedral, with its perpetually burning candle.

We decided to finish our tour at Canterbury and head back to London. We assumed that our compatriots would again stay at the Muralyn (that was our plan) and so we telephoned the Muralyn from Canterbury, asking if our party had returned. They said they had not! Well, we figured they must be doing the same thing as we were thinking to do, so we left Canterbury, heading back to London.

On the way we stopped to see Chartwell, the birthplace of Winston Churchill, but only could Chartwell-Churchill's Housesee it from a distance, as our way was blocked.

Arriving back in London, our party WAS there, and the receptionist at the hotel that we talked to wasn’t aware of that. Well, all’s well that end’s well. We soon learned about their adventures—-given Wolfie’s interest in little trains, they had taken the 11-mile Kent and East Sussex Railway train from Tenterden to Bodiam village, which is very near Hastings. They had also dealt with not having Bob’s suitcase and stopped to pick up toiletries for him. They had stayed near Rye at two B&Bs as there wasn’t enough room in one, and when Gisela and Wolfie came to pick up Bob the next morning, he was having such a good time over breakfast with the children of the family that it was hard to tear him away!Taxi to the Airport

The next morning Gisela and Wolfie left by car for Berlin, and we took a London cab to the airport to go home.

Now we’re home, thinking about what an action-packed 10 days that was! One could spend years in England visiting all of the historic spots.

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#2 England, May 7, 1980

#2 England, May 7, 1980

img080We drove the short distance to Windsor to see  the castle, and the changing of the guard. The castle was imposing. During the changing of the guard, I happened to be looking the other way, when the company of img083guards were marching down the street with me caught in the middle of them all. I escaped and took some photos.

St. George’s chapel, which St. George's Chapelwe toured, was spectacular.

On we went to Sheldonian Theatre-OxfordOxford, that wonderful place of learning and beautiful colleges.

We first encountered the Sheldonian Theater, the first major work of Christopher Wren,All Soul's College

followed by All Soul’s College, one of the most beautiful. Oxford has 39 colleges, the oldest of which goes back about 700 years. There are many traditions at Oxford, and it took until 1877 for lecturers to be allowed to marry. The first female students were admitted in 1878, but none were granted degrees until 1920—-the same year that women were granted the vote in the USA.  Jeanne and Gisela discovered another item of sexism—when they went to a public toilet, they had to give up on their plan since they didn’t have the correct coins to insert that would open the doors.  Burt reported that men had no such problems in their toilet—his proclamation was that “Men pee free in Oxford!”

Windrush River from our B&BWe moved on to Buford where we stayed overnight in a wonderful B&B which was overlooking the Windrush River. The wind really blew that night and it was pretty cold, but the atmospheric rural B&B was spectacular.

That evening, on the recommendation of our hosts, we had dinner at the Maytime Inn, a Maytime Innmost wonderful place with spectacular food.

The dessert was amazing lemon meringue pie, smothered with heavy cream! I’ll Dinner at the Maytimenever forget it!

Leaving Our B&BThe next morning we checked out after a lovely breakfast with the family, and did a little sightseeing around Burford.

Burford is a Burfordsmall town with a long history and beautiful buildings.

We also visited a
Swinbrook-Church of St. Maryan interesting church nearby at Swinbrooke.

We saw the local White Horse, a chalk drawing on a nearby hill, which was over 3000 White Horse of Uffington-3000 BCyears old.

Moving on, img125on a cold, windy day, we saw the Stones of Avebury, a prehistoric 2500 BCE circle of stones.

The rural areas which we drove through surprised me when I saw the thatched-roofed img113houses. They reminded me of old song books with girls with muffs and long skirts, long-nosed dogs (which I also saw) and the thatched roofs. I had no idea that I would actually see these things.

Morris DancerNext on our drive was Bath, that Roman site, still extant, with warm natural baths. We also saw Morris dancers walking about, having just performed a dance before we got there.Bath-Roman Baths
Longleat HouseWe stopped at

Longleet House—-one of the many manor houses that are huge and out of date.

3000 B.C.We continued on to Stonehenge, that old (3000 BCE) stone circle from prehistoric times.  Again, the rural areas with “the sheep in the meadow, the cows in the corn” were beautiful.img135
Our next destination was Salisbury. We stayed at a thatched-roofed B&B which was B&B-Salisburyunique! The proprietess said her dog had just had 11 puppies, which she was keeping in the kitchen. Unfortunately she showed them off to Gisela (Mrs. Clean) and Burt (most skittish about non-clean) who looked into the kitchen, thinking about our eating breakfast the next morning. They both proclaimed Salisbury Cathedralthat they would NOT eat there. So in the morning we left and looked for a place to eat. We finally found a restaurant with large duck eggs, which we did not try, but did have breakfast.  Of course we visited the famed Salisbury Cathedral. It was begun in 1220 and is a magnificent building.

Cerne GiantA most spectacular chalk drawing was awaiting us—-the Cerne Giant. This 60-meter-high giant is on a hillside allowing a full showing of EVERYTHING! Sheep keep the vegetation down and the drawing seeable.

DorchesterWe were traveling in two cars—-Gisela’s car had Gisela, Wolfie and Bob; Burt’s rented car had Burt, Jeanne and me. When we were in Dorset, we got a little lost from each other. Anyway, Burt, Jeanne and I had a lovely Cream Tea in a very old teashop in Dorset.

We moved on to Southhampton, the port where Jeanne’s and my father had landed Southhamptonin World War I, after traversing the Atlantic Ocean. Clearly it still was a busy port.

We found Gisela, Wolfie and Bob, again, and plan to continue our journey, east along the southern coast.

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#1 England, May 4, 1980

#1 England, May 4, 1980

Jeanne, Bob, Burt and I are taking a quick trip to England, where we met our friends, Hotel MuralynGisela and Wolfgang, who had driven (and ferried) to London from Berlin. Gisela had arranged for us all to stay at the Muralyn, a small hotel in a residential neighborhood that bordered on all the historic things in London.

Bob, Jeanne, Burt, Gisela and WolfgangSince we had very little time in England (10 days!) we started right off on our sightseeing in London. First up was the Tower Bridge—-which many people erroneously call the London Bridge of nursery rhyme fame. Still, it looks exactly as I had imagined ‘London Bridge’ to look.Tower Bridge

Moving on, we Tower of Londonvisited the White Tower of London, with its bloody history of the murder of two little boys, probably by their uncle, the future King Richard III. Here also were the Crown Jewels—-a dazzling display—-and we saw the wing-clipped ravens on the lawn, playing out the myth that the kingdom would prevail as long London Taxisas the ravens remained here.

Lots of fun was just ‘seeing’ and ‘being’ in London. The London taxis are really big and luxurious;

the pubs were fun, cheap, quick and tasty for meals.An English Pub

Over the next couple of days we visited many of the Elgin Marbleshigh spots. One such was the British Museum where we loved seeing the Elgin Marbles that were removed from the Parthenon in Athens;

the Rosetta Stone Rosetta Stonefound in Egypt that served to help decipher the Egyptian hieroglyphs.

Phoenician Ruinand some beautiful ancient Phoenician statues.

A visit to Harrod’s department store, especially concentrating on Harrod's Department Storeall the wonderful food had us all salivating.

Trafalgar Square had us dodging pigeons, who seemed only too happy to bomb us with their droppings!Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square

Number 10 Downing St.

Other highlights in London were visiting Number 10 Downing Street;

and
Marble Arch with the Speakers’ Corner, where speakers were definitely holding forth on political Marble ArchSpeakers' Cornerissues of the day.

Then we visited St. Paul’s Cathedral, that mighty church St. Paul's Cathedraldesigned by Christopher Wren, with building commencing in 1675.

The Serpentine

On two subsequent days we continued our sojourn through Hyde Park following the
Serpentine, which brought us to Kensington Gardens  and Palace.

Kensington Gardens

Kensington Palace

We saw the Prince Albert Memorial and the Royal Albert Hall.Royal Albert Hall

Prince Albert MemorialIn spite of our non-stop sightseeing, we did manage to get to two musicals—-“Annie” and “The King and I,” seated in a beautiful little theater.img076

We loved seeing the bobbies in the parks—-some on horseback, and some on foot, willing to img064pose with tourists!

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On to the houses of Parliament! Catching our first glimpse of Big Ben was a thrill!Houses of Parliament

Next was exploring Westminster Abby. Here is where all the British Kings and Queens have been crowned, including Queen Elizabeth. The building was begun in 1245 but much was added later.Westminster Abbey

While we were in London, we were aware that the Iranian Embassy had been bombed. Driving by one day, we readily could see the damage.Bombing at Iran Embassy

img073We took the tube to Buckingham Palace, which was just as well because of the rainy weather. We didn’t see the Queen —-more nursery rhyme thoughts—“Pussycat, Pussycat where have you been? I’ve been to London to
Buckingham Palacevisit the Queen!”

A quick stop Carnaby Streetat Carnaby Street,

img075

another pub visit,

Picadilly Circusa ride through Piccadilly Circus at night, and that about finished London and us!

We’ll be leaving for Windsor in the morning and on to more adventures.

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#3 Germany, May 17, 1981

The last week of our trip sped by. We started in Fussen where there are a bunch of castles. The first, Schloss Hohenschwangau, was where (Mad) Ludwig II grew up. It was remodeled from an old 12th century ruined castle by Ludwig II’s father, Maximilian II.

img846Here is where Ludwig met Wagner, and later built ‘his’ castle, Neuschwanstein, with img849 roomsespecially designed for Wagner’s music. Both castles are fairy-tale beautiful, img853especially set in the gorgeous mountains of this area.

The beautiful Bavarian Alps afforded some stunning scenery. img857

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From here we drove to Lake Constanz, to the town of Lindau, a lovely ‘vacation’ town on the lake.

img863It had a wonderful town hall—-so Bavarian looking! We took a boat trip on the lake, and enjoyed beautiful weather with the rest of the German vacationers.

At our popular hotel, there were chairs lined up img872with a view of the lake. These chairs were attached to one another so they could not be moved. The only choice was to sit in them all in a row, looking at the lake——sooooo German!

Now our driving adventure really began. We headed through the Alps toward Garmisch. Even though this was in mid-May, it was still very ‘winter-like.’ The driving was more img881demanding than we had anticipated and so we found ourselves, at dusk, looking for a hotel. We stopped in some tiny village that had a small hotel. When we walked into the lobby and to the desk, nobody was around. It was quietly eerie, but finally a young man came to help us. We got checked into our rooms, which were on different floors. Later in the night I awoke to lots of loud noise—-hollaring, partying—-we decided that when the cat is away, the mice will play—-it seemed that parents were away, and the 18-year-olds were running the hotel, along with their friends. It wasn’t exactly ominous but it did seem like we were far out into the hinterland with only these kids for company, who didn’t seem very well behaved!

img884Morning came but when we went to check out, we couldn’t raise anybody at the desk. So we calculated what we owed and left cash on the desk in that amount! Off we went, headed for Garmisch, another img889
charming town among many!

From there we drove to Dachau—-one of the infamous towns of the Holocaust with its prison. ‘Arbeit Macht Frei’ (Work Makes You Free) greeted us at the gate—-pretty ironic given what happened here during World War II. Some of the buildings had been reconstructed to give an idea of how these people were kept. There were also some shocking photographs displayed in the museum. Yes, we saw the ovens for the crematoriums, and when we could stand it no longer, we moved on to Munich.

Munich was a breath of fresh air after Dachau. Burt wanted to see the BMW plant img892museum, so we went there first. –

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Other sites to img902explore in Munich were the churches, the Platz, and two Rathuses, the Old and the New. The New Rathus had a glockenspiel on the tower that played on the hour. We joined many tourists waiting for the crucial minute. It was quite charming with its display of two historic events.

One late afternoon we visited the Hofbrauhaus, the world’s most famous beer hall, img909where we raised a few steins and ate traditional German food——umm good!  Later in the evening, Burt thought we should go out for dessert and coffee.  Four restaurants in a row refused to serve us since we weren’t going to eat a full meal but only dessert and coffee.    More German rules, I guess.

We enjoyed Munich a lot, but then it was time to drive back to Frankfurt, turn in our car and fly home. We’re home now, enjoying our trip in retrospect——it was wonderful!

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#2 Germany, May 11, 1981

img770The big cathedral of Cologne greeted us in that old city. This is Germany’s largest cathedral. Construction was started in 1248, but not completed, due to lack of funds, until 1880!

The Romans were here in force and we img775visited some of their handiwork in the Romanish-Germanisches Museum. This museum had wonderful Roman artifacts, found along the Rhine. The mosaic floors were outstanding.

img779We moved on to Aachen, Charlemagne making it his capital city in 794 AD. He is also buried here, in the Cathedral.

The 14th century Rathus is  impressive as usual—-a great pile of a building.img780

Continuing south, we visited Trier, img796with its second century Roman Porta Nigra (Black Gate) and other Roman ruins.

The ruins of an old Roman img784amphitheater were fun to explore.

Prince Elector’s Palace with img793Constantine’s Basilica in the background were visible in the Palace Gardens. Constantine’s Basilica was built around 310 AD.

Off we went to theimg804 University—-of Heidelburg, that is, Germany’s oldest and most famous university.

It was a rainy, cold day, but we warmed ourselves by eating bratwursts and drinking beer. Heidelberg is high up on river banks, offering a lovely view of the town from the castle.

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We put up for the night in the charming town of Bad Mergentheim, one of the many towns that img813have hot baths. Another interesting Rathus graced this Platz.

This brought us to the start of the Romantic Road. This is a nearly 400 km road that goes through Western Bavaria and boasts quite a number of ‘gems.’ Each town along the road outdoes the other in architecture and charm, making it a very worthwhile journey.

We started in Rothenburg, a most beautiful town with several medieval towers that were img826atop the road, which we drove through. It was fun to explore these towns on foot, with each street having ‘star’ attractions.

Our next stop was in Dinkelsbuhl, again with its landmark tower. When we had lunch img834here, the waitress (in mostly German) told us that ‘spargel’ was in season, which we discovered was asparagus. Burt elected to order spargel (there were several different spargel dishes,) but the bossy waitress (proprietess?) insisted that he MUST order a different spargel. So we all ordered the spargel that she insisted on, and it truly was special. Beautiful white, thick, tender asparagus spears, cooked to perfection.

img815In a visit to a street market, we could see the asparagus for sale on display, along with many other goodies that we were sampling, too!

We stopped in Nordlingen, with its

img84214th century walls, which we could walk around. It gave us a good idea of the town as we viewed it on our walk around the walls.

And that brought us to Fussen and all the castles hereabouts. We shall explore them tomorrow.

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#1 Germany, May 5, 1981

Jeanne, Bob, Burt and I left for Germany on April, 30th, which was the day after my birthday. My kids surprised us at the airport by bringing a decorated carrot birthday cake to the gate! We all celebrated by eating cake, so we were high on sugar as we took off!

We landed in Frankfurt and drove our rented car to Hamburg, the start of our German Town Halladventure. We arrived on May Day, and after getting settled in our Hotel Atlantic, started out on some sightseeing. The Gothic Rathus (Town Hall) was spectacular. Other churches and landmarks were fun to img719see. Later we spent some time at the busy Hamburg harbor, the backbone of the city’s wealth. And finally it was dinner time, although not much was open because of it being May Day. We finally found a cute little Portuguese img722restaurant at the harbor, where we enjoyed our first dinner.

The next morning we were treated to an included buffet breakfast which had such an array of wonderful breads, cheeses and sausages, that I fear we waddled off to our sightseeing mission, afterwards! We saw many displays in store windows that img730showed that Germans take their sausage seriously!

Later we stopped in a pub for a beer, even if I’m not too crazy about beer—-this is Germany, after all!

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We had read about their ‘Reeperbahn,’ Hamburg’s Red Light District. We four conservative img738Minnesotans got ourselves off to see a sex show! We sat right at the small stage and sipped on beers during the show. We got a kick out of the ushers—-women dressed in black skirts and white blouses, like how it would be at a symphony concert! The show was pretty explicit and probably not anything that I need to do again, very quickly, but we considered it part of our exposure to ‘things German.’

The next day we were on our way to Luneburg, with its beautiful Rathaus (Town Hall.)img756

The off- kilter St. Johanniskirche, while beautiful is off center by 2.2 meters!img752

Back out in the rural areas, while driving through rolling fields, we were presented with img760lovely, flat, green scenery.  The area north of Luneburg is called the Luneburg Heath, an historic geological formation caused by overgrazing after the Neolithic period, on poor, sandy soils.  Most of it is in a Nature Reserve.

Our next destination

img761was the smaller city of Celle. One special building was the Bomann Museum.

Another was the Schloss, built in 1292. It now houses administrative offices and the Palace Museum.img762

We are so enjoying Germany! Every town is a picture, with their old platz buildings and present day stores. Tomorrow we’ll continue toward Cologne.

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