Thursday, July 24, 2008

Germany Trip Report, part IV.

Wednesday, 1 August, 2007

We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast on the lovely balcony before setting off on our own for Bavaria today.

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Our rental car was equipped with GPS which is a wonderful, wonderful thing when venturing off without your German hosts (once your friendly navigator here figured out how to make the GPS lady speak in English rather than German, that is).  

The drive from Bingen to Fussen took about four and a half hours and passed quickly as we listened to the 7th Harry Potter book piped through an iPod to the car’s radio.  The scenery became quite breath-taking and dramatic about an hour from Fussen as the Alps came into view.

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The town of Fussen was striking with its Swiss-chalet style architecture and quaint winding streets.  We drove through around 4:00, passing many buses teeming with tourists heading out of town.

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We stayed in the Hotel Ruebezahl in the neighboring town of Schwangau.  

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The hotel sits in a pretty little meadow, and our balcony had a direct view of the Neuchwanstein and Hohenschwangau Castles. 

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Special pillow, Webkinz and red velvet eye mask - what more does a girl need to get a good night's sleep?

Completing the bucolic atmosphere were the cows with bells around their necks grazing below our window.  

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After checking in and admiring the view from our pretty room, Robert and Dorothy set off on foot to explore as I sat down to type out the first few days of our German adventure on Robert’s computer (I hadn’t had time before this, can you believe it?).

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A “gourmet three-course dinner” was included in our room rate.  The fact that we weren’t paying extra for such a grand meal should have been my first clue that this was going to be less than a stellar culinary experience, but somehow my hopes were still high as we were shown to our corner table.   Doubts crept into my mind when I saw the “Disney Babies” plastic placemat at Dorothy’s seat, but our fate was sealed when I heard Tammy Wynette singing “Stand by your Man” on the restaurant stereo.  We should have gotten up right then and sought out alternative dining, but we didn’t, and we proceeded to suffer through the first bad meal of our trip.  Dorothy asked for the child’s pizza with cheese only (instead of cheese and prosciutto as the menu described) and the fraulein serving us told her that the pizza was “premade”  (read: frozen).  Robert’s main course looked like Filet-o-fish on a bed of bottled tartar sauce.  Even the lovely view from our table was marred by a plastic potted plant.


We left the restaurant disappointed but none the poorer and decided to drive across the border so that Dorothy could visit Austria.  The days are very long here, so even though it was 8:30, there was still sufficient daylight to enjoy the spectacular views as we meandered through the Alps and into Reutte, Austria.  We found an ice cream shop on the main street and had a nice stroll around the quiet and nearly deserted town.  

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Dots with her Austrian ice cream cone.

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We searched long and hard before finally finding any sort of sign that said "Austria."

We returned, satisfied, to our hotel.   I entertained no thoughts of getting up early for my free breakfast.


Aimee said...

Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment! Your journey looks absolutely amazing! I will continue to follow it - thanks for sharing! :)

Amber M. said...

Your pictures are breathtaking...and so is your darling little girl!

I'll be back to visit...

Erin said...

What a dreamy vacation! Your daughter is so fortunate to be able to experience such an experience. Thank you for your kind words on my blog!

Blogger said...

What a beautiful trip you took!

My husband lived in Austria for 2 years and he still speaks so fondly of it, now I can see why (even though 99% of your pics are from Germany, but I am guessing they look similar?)

Thanks for sharing your wonderful trip, nice to meet you :)