Tags " driving"
Aug 19, 1961 - Europe 1961    No Comments

Lucerne and Driving to Innsbruck

We awoke before 7 and at 7:15 the man called that he har our car ready – he’d left Weisbaden the night before! We were so tickled with it – a blue-green Opel, fairly new, plenty of room. We packed up and left about 8:30, making a slight detour to see the Lion of Lucerne – which was magnificent! With the help of two maps and the clearly marked roads (I can’t call them highways), we drove across Switzerland to the N.E. There were 2 or 3 mountain passes with beautiful views. We navigated pretty well in spite of the heavy traffic, bicycles, and narrow roads.

In Buchs on the border we stopped for gas just as a wedding procession passed. Several horse drawn carriages bedecked with flowers with wedding couple & guests in native costume. Such excitement!

We crossed the Rhine into Lichenstein where we had lunch at a place called Nendeln, just a couple of miles from Vaduz, the capital. Then on into Austria over more passes, the most interesting being St. Anton where there was still snow  from a recent storm. We got out and took pictures, threw snow balls & marveled at the numbers of German tourists who were running all over the slopes just as excited about the snow as if they’d never seen any.

We had lovely scenery all the way to Innsbruck which is in a valley by the River InnThe river is named Inn. Not to be confused with an inn on a river. with mountains all ’round. A fairly good hotel, the ArlberghofFirst time I have not been able to find an internet reference to a place they stayed. Definitely not one by this name in Innsbruck now., as usual, by the train station – it’s been that way in every town!

Had dinner at the hotel and then drove to the Maria Theresa hotel for a two hour program of folk music – very similar to the Swiss one the night before. We would have been bored if it had not been for the two Austrian men at the table where we were seated. The younger was a medical student at the University here & could speak very good English but it was the older one who amused us as much as the floor show. He was quite a character – laughing, winking, leering & drinking his special wine.

Harry & I dropped the night owl Earlys off at another place so we could get some rest – Harry says he can’t take much more of this night life – but I’ve been holding up pretty well – not getting over tired and as yet, feeling fine.

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Aug 21, 1961 - Europe 1961    No Comments

Innsbruck to Linderhof, Neuschwanstein & Munich

We were off early, driving over a mountain pass to Garmisch. Again, narrow roads & lots of traffic – cars, bicyclists, hikers. Ever since we went into Switzerland, we’ve seen people of all ages & both sexes dressed for hiking – boots, sox, knickers, packs strapped on back – and these people really believe in walking. As a matter of fact, even I can now walk for a couple of hours without collapsing. At first, my calves were awfully sore, but are in good “shape” now.

Through little villages with pictues printing on the hourses, to Garmisch, where we stopped to change the Austrian shillings to German marks, to drink our first Lowenbrau, & get directions to the castles. Garmisch looked so new & fresh – perhaps rebuilt? Flowers still vivid in gardens & window boxes as in Switzerland & Austria – we never tire of admiring them.

We got to Linderhof at noon, ate lunch at the cafe there, & spent a couple of hours looking at the gardens, fountains, grotto, without going into the castle itself – time was running short. We had thought we would have a short drive this day with plenty of time to stop by these two castles on our way to Munich but it turned out to be a long & hard day of driving.

Neuschwanstein is only about 10 miles from Linderhoff but you have to circle around – for about 30 miles. We finally arrived at the picture-book castle of Neuschwanstein & were so late that we only looked at it from below, while having a beer. It is lovely from a distance – but no one had told us you had to walk up to it – high in the sky.

So we had to leave – it was still hours to Munich – and it was a tiring drive, even tho’ at times the speedometer registered 120 (kilometres, about 70 mph) – it was 7 o’clock before we arrived in Munich.

We found our hotel, the Deutsche Hof, right next to the terminal – again – both being very new. The hotel was one year old, 15 stories, and the most modern imaginable. We had the best room of the whole trip – and were in it for the shortest length of time.

We were to go to the Hofbrauhaus as guests of Mr. Starr & we got there (via taxi) a little after 8. We went upstairs to an enormous room filled with tables where a German band was playing. The music & singing & waving steins in the air was contagious – very informal festive atmosphere. The steins were enormous – it took both hands to get one to the mouth – yet the waitresses carried six in each hand. We were to have two steins but couldn’t finish even one. We had a most delicious meal – roast lamb with a salad – evidently especially prepared for us – no one else was served it. All the while there was music, singing, clapping as the Hall filled up with people. It had been a long day, tho’, and we left after a couple of hours.

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Aug 22, 1961 - Europe 1961    No Comments

Munich to Baden-Baden

Harry and I breakfasted upstairs on the top floor of the hotel – it is a little horrifying to see how much damage still exists from the bombing. Again, as in Innsbruck, there are many new buildings around the station but here, there were still remaining many gutted buildings. From the guidebooks, we learned how many of the old buildings had been reconstructed & repaired. There is an enormous amount of building going on all over the city. It truly a shame we didn’t have more time here – it looks as if there would be much of interest.

Harry and I caught a trolley & went to the J. A. Henkels store to look at the knives – but it was a disappointment. It seems that, in this store anyway, they don’t have some of the things they export to the U.S. We ended up buying some kitchen knives and sewing scissors.

We met the Early’s at the hotel & drove across country on the Autobahn, the super-4-lan4 highway that Hitler had built. It was a relief to get on a good highway and we made very good time. From Munich to the west, there are few hills – we’d left the Alps behind – mostly rolling countryside with larger farms than in the South, bigger barns & more machinery. Even so, the women were in the fields, as in Austria & Switzerland, helping with the harvest (hay). It rained intermittently all day – it seems there are many showers in Germany maybe accounting for the lush fields of wheat, cabbages & in one or two places fields (or nurseries ) with gladiolas & other flowers.

We left the Autobahn temporarily at Uln and Jeannette and I visited the Munster Cathedral – it has the tallest spire in the world. Maybe because it is Protestant, or maybe because the organist was playing, it was the first time I’d visited a church in Europe that I had a feeling of reverence – there were only a few people in the sanctuary and all had a reverent attitude – instead of the noisy throngs in the other Cathedrals.

We had lunch at a nearby restaurant, the Golden Ox, then returned to the Autobahn. Arrived Baden-Baden about 4 o’clock. I had thought we’d be in the middle of the Black Forest but we’re not – we actually saw more forest yesterday from Neuschwanstein to Munich.

Our hotel, one of dozens in this resort town, is very nice & is well situated – away from the train station. There is a nice balcony outside our room but it seems to shower too much to use it.

Harry and I wanted to look at umbrellas so we took a long walk past the shops. When it began to rain, we bought one for each of us – everyone on the street here carries one – you just feel undressed without it!

After dinner, we went to the Casino & played Roulette for a couple of hours – it was interesting to watch & fun to play – we came out a little ahead. The casino is very plush – carpets, chandeliers, statuary,, silk wall covering, etc. Got home about midnight.

I seem to concentrate a lot on our hotel rooms but in each there seems to be a surprise. Here and in Munich, the top cover is not a sheet, not a blanket – but ??? {water stain makes this unreadable} – a sort of a feather comfort thing that is very warm but there is not alternative. Also in Baden-Baden, our bath was a “Thermal-Bad” – mineral water, as well as plain, piped to the tub as you could take the baths in your room. There was a thermometer provided for the bath water, the only trouble being that it registered Centigrade instead of Fahrenheit.

Before we leave the South of Germany, I musn’t forget to comment on the numbers of pinickers we’ve seen – in Austria, Switzerland, & Germany. All had equipment – folding tables, chairs, even lounge chairs, which they carried around in or on top to their cars. So that is one reason, I suppose, that everywhere we went {?} groups – even on the {?} mountain pass. They don’t have to stop at a roadside park as people do in the States, because they carry their own equipment.

Also – the baby carriages! From the time we got on the boat train at Cherbourg, all the way around Europe. I have been amazed at the vast quantities of baby carriages – in the fields, in the cities, in the villages, on the highways, inside of & on top of little cars, etc. It’s pretty obvious that families take their babies everywhere they go – we’ve seen babes in arms 0n many a sightseeing tour – and it’s obvious that we’ve been through sme very fertile – and Catholic – countries!

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Aug 25, 1961 - Europe 1961    No Comments

Heidelburg to Wiesbaden

We were asked to go by the Helbig’s apartment in Ludwigshaven which is across the river from Mannheim. We were ages finding our way but finally found the right address.

Their apartment is a modern one on the main street, nicely furnished (except for the kitchen – no ice box) and has the balcony with the inevitable pots of flowers & plants. They were extremely cordial – offered us several different kinds of wines & liqueurs instead of the coffee we expected – and wanted. They even got in their Volkswagon and showed us the way to the Wiesbaden highway – a good thing too – we could never have found it.

We had crossed the Rhine at Mainz and now the highway paralleled it. Many more factories and much activity on the river. We bought a picnic lunch – bread, cheese, meat & wine – and found a spot on the river to eat. It was a nice day – cloudy occasionally but no rain.

By the time we reached Wiesbaden & located the Hotel Rose, I was thoroughly tired & ready for bed. Rested all afternoon but for the first time, didn’t feel very good. Had one drink – with lots of soda – and a very light supper & went on to the room while the others went to see a little of the town.

Harry had to buy cigarettes for the first time – we’d left the ship with 9 cartons and gave one to Joanne Abeel and they’d lasted until now.

We saw very little of Wiesbaden but our impression is that it is quite a city – wide streets, many large stores – it reminds us of Paris with all the hustle & bustle.

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