Tuesday, 1 October 2013

The Rhine and Moselle

I am told Imelda Marcos had a thing about buying shoes, well Kathleen has a thing about buying hats. Yet another one is acquired when visiting Rudesheim.

Friday 27th September 2013

We spend the day, cycling along the Rhine to Guisenheim and beyond.

Visiting the market, to buy fresh vegetables.

Lunchtime is spent drinking white wine in a pavement bar.

All very enjoyable.

Saturday 28th September 2013

We leave Guisemheim, for the Moselle.
Kathleen is very concerned about the route the sat-nav will take us, the Rhine is a big river, and there are not many bridges.

Initially, she is concerned, because we are heading toward Koblenz, a significant distance down river, but, after just a few kilometres, we are directed to a ferry across the Rhine to Bingen.

The Rhine is an incredibly busy river, with barges and large river cruise boats passing up and down the river every few minutes.

So, crossing the river in a ferry, is, we find, the equivalent of attempting to cross the M1 on foot.

The ferry has to pause and turn head on to the current, whilst barges pass on either side of us, several times during the crossing.

We are heading for a Stelplatz which we got from a book I picked up at a tourist display, we arrive at Minheim, (N49 51’ 54” E6 56’ 28”).
But, the best laid plans of mice and men, seldom work out.
I have carefully checked out the church in advance on Google, but, we arrive to find the place absolutely full.
A van just leaving, but the German van we have followed for the past five miles gets the space. I knew I should have taken a chance and overtaken him! He is so anxious to grab the space, he begins reversing into it, before the departing van has actually exited the space, and promptly reverses into him! No damage done fortunately.

Never mind, we know of another Stelplatze. 

Longuich, Felten Weine and Edelbrande (N49 48’ 7” E6 46’ 49”) A return visit, so, a stroll to refresh Kathleen’s memory of where the church is, and check out mass times.

We pause in a Bier Garten for a glass of wine, then, back to the van to snooze in the autumn sun.

The banks of the Moselle are covered in vineyards, and, most of the stellplatz are set in the vineyards.

This one, at Longuich, is no exception, we are surrounded by the raw materials of our lunch time tipple!

Sunday 29th September 2013

Sunday, so, that means church.
While Kathleen cycles to the village to attend church, I bake bread for later.
No, I have not become a bread chef, we bought part cooked bread buns, at Lidl, all you have to do, is pop them in the oven for ten minutes, even I can do that.
After Kathleen returns from church, we cycle down river for about six miles, a little beyond a place called Mehring. We call in at Mehring, to check out the Stellplatz there, it has a good spot, right on the river bank, but, it holds approximately 100 vans, and is a little too big for our taste.
By the time we return to Longuich, we have cycled about twelve miles, that is quite a feat on our folding bicycles, which are not designed for significant distances.
We cycle back to the Wine / Bier Garden we visited yesterday, for a very enjoyable lunch, some excellent wine, German brandy and German Liquers.

Monday 30th September 2013

A beautiful autumn day, bright blue sky, warm sunshine.

We cycle along the Moselle into Scweich, passing a rather large river cruise ship, executing a complete turn in the river. The ship is almost as long as the river is wide.

The plan had been to use a cash machine in Scweich, then cycle along the river in the direction of Trier.
But, we meet an Welsh couple who have ridden to Scweich on their motor scooter from further down the Moselle. They turn out to be an entertaining pair, 74 years old, but, not even looking retirement age, they are making their way back home, from a visit to Poland.
We talk for so long, we run our of time to do our cycle ride, and instead return to the van for lunch, and an afternoon of reading in the sun.

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