Saturday 3rd September 2016 - Another lovely sunny day.
This morning our plan was to ride along beside the lovely River Elbe, but to get there we had about 3 kilometres to traverse on quiet roads that mostly dipped downhill, but because of several steep sections this was quickly completed.
Once there we found many miles of dedicated cycling tracks that followed the river banks on both sides of the water, providing a beautiful and tranquil place to cycle. Therefore, we put our best tyre forward and peddled along about 26 kilometres of it, many of them with cliffs and crags to admire as we went. Our trail also led us over the border again into the Czech Republic, but as we crossed it was just as if we'd run into a solid wall of nasty little flies, and even though we persevered for several miles, we couldn't seem to outrun them. They were horrible, and we couldn't even speak to each other without getting extra protein rations - so our only option was to turn tail and head back into Germany, and once there, the flies disappeared!
As usual, we stopped several times to admire the views, and then the only other 'fly in the ointment' was the hills we needed to go up to get home - oh how I wish I'd got an e-bike! Anyway, with a bit of huffing and puffing we did eventually make it, and we only had to push up one very steep section so we were quite pleased with ourselves.
Sunday 4th September 2016 - Morning - overcast but warm; Afternoon - heavy rain showers; Evening - torrential thunder storms.
Today we were a bit silly! We had decided to visit the 16th century Festung Konigstein - one of the largest mountain fortresses in Europe and equal in size to about 13 football fields. It sits embedded into the rocks and enthroned on top of a table mountain making it a beacon that can be seen form many many miles away! It's uses, over the years, have been changed numerous times, and apart from the obvious, it has served as a prison and housed lots of important dignitaries who had committed crimes that required them to be isolated from the external world for the rest of their lives.
Now, why were we silly - 2 counts really! As the castle is so high up we should have realised how hard it would be to cycle there - up up and up we went, until hot and sweaty, we arrived at the grand gate!
Then as we were walking around the mighty fortress walls admiring the stupendous views - the rains came - and had we got coats? NO!
Oh well we thought, maybe we can just shelter till it stops, and this we did in the little garrison church that stood within the walls of the castle. And it just so happened that there was to be a short organ recital, so a perfect excuse to hide form the rain. This time the music was Bach, and a piece we knew, so we quite enjoyed the time we spent there - but the weather wasn't co-operating and it was still chucking it down when the music stopped and we were turfed out! So, in cycling shorts and t-shirts we toddled back to our bikes, and as the temperature dropped we/I was soon in a shivering state, but we had no option other than to hop on and woosh back down the hills home where a nice hot shower awaited.
However, later in the evening, when the torrential rain and thunder started, we felt as if we'd probably had a lucky escape because if that had come earlier we really would have been drowned rats!
Monday 5th September 2016 - Overcast with heavy showers!
Happy Anniversary To US - It's a year
today since we started our nomadic life style
So, what's it been like and how do we feel!
Well, first of all neither of us have any regrets at all, and we are loving our freedom to roam and explore as we choose with nobody to please but each other. We plan to continue with this lifestyle for the foreseeable future and we're hoping to see a lot more of Europe before we retire to a fixed abode and join the pipe and slippers brigade.
When we left our home town of Heanor on 5th September 2015 we'd sold our house and most of our possessions, just keeping what we could carry and a few bits and bobs that are stored with various relatives. And like most people, throughout our lives these 'belongings' and the acquisition of them had seemed essential, but we haven't missed any of them so it would seem that they couldn't have been very important to us in the first place.
However, what we have missed is our family and friends, and in particular, seeing our grandchildren growing up. Having said that, our reunions are regular and joyful and this year we're planning to spend Christmas at home with them. Also, to some extent, social media helps us to keep in touch, and with our family group WhatsApp, we often know what their all up to before they've even done it!
|Thomas, Evelyn and Jack|
And finally, I just need to tell you that I made John cry this evening - and it was nothing to do with homesickness! While we were out shopping I popped a bottle of vinegar into the basket thinking it would go nice on our chips. So once home with dinner cooked we liberally sprinkled it on, as usual without taking any notice of what it said on the label. Poor John had tears pouring down his face and commented that 'the vinegar's very strong', and it was only then that we translated the label and realised it said 'enjoy diluted with 4 parts water! Oh well, not sure what it will do to us but it might make T4rdis2's windows shine!
Anyway, Bye for now and take care xx