Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Liquid Gold

Hi All,

We arrived in Munich mid afternoon on wednesday where we were picking up the car in order to drive north to Rothenburg. Glenn was none to impressed when the BMW he booked was switched to an Audi A4, but we couldn't do much about it so took the car. Got into the car and found it was a manual, also not much of a problem, Glenn likes manuals but I was concerned about the extra concentration required to drive it while also staying on the OTHER side of the road..... Glenn assurred me that it would be fine - and it was. Mostly...=0). The next hurdle was the GPS. We spent 1/2 an hour trying to set the stupid thing up for English and it kept asking for a CD - which we had, but there was no CD player in the car!! A call to the service desk and they too came up confused and with a secondary GPS unit. Finally we were on our way.

The drive was beautiful, well as beautiful as it can be at 240km\ph. Yes that is the speed that Glenn got up to, well downhill at least, as that was as fast as it would go. Glenn was aiming for 280 so was a bit disappointed. He did love the autobahn though. It requires a lot of concentration and looking in the rearview mirror, because if someone is coming up behind you, you better move over quick. The good thing is that all the trucks stay in the right hand lane, unless they decide to pass each other, that means you need good brakes!

We arrived in Rothenburg about 7pm. Narrow cobbled ONE WAY streets of a beautiful medieval city are interesting when trying to find your hotel. But we got there. We both loved Rothenburg, we felt like we were homer in candy land and wanted to skip down the pretty little streets with the pretty window displays. We did the night watchmans tour and that was really good. We even forked out for the DVD of his tour so you will have to ask us to watch it to see this beautiful town and its history. Then next morning was SHOPPING!! There is the most fantastic christmas shop that is great to explore. And yes, we bought christmassy things in September. We couldn't help it. I was even caught humming christmas carols.

And then it was time to leave. We should have spent a couple of days there, but I didn't think we needed it. The drive back was a bit slower as I seemed to have set the GPS to "scenic" route, much to Glenn's displeasure, but I got a great photo of a sunflower field that was well worth it. We made it back to the city, where glenn dropped me and the bags at the hotel and proceeded to drop the car back. It was less than 2kms away and Glenn Spent 4 hours looking for it before returning to the hotel. Yes you read correctly. Glenn was "lost" in Munich for 4hours!! So we decided to keep the car and use it to go and see the castles the next day. BREATHTAKING!! Well worth it if you get the chance. And we managed to drop the car back Ok.

Octoberfest. Or Oktoberfest if you prefer. All I can say is wow. It was great fun catching up and drinking a lot of beer with Andrea and Linda who flew over from the UK. The whole thing is insane. We got there at about 9:30am and by then all of the "tents" (read Temporary buildings that look like permanent buildings) were FULL. We waited inline for about an hour but by then it was obvious that they weren't letting anyone else in so Andrea scouted and outside table for us. We met some interesting people. A lovely german guy who was studying in Munich and a loud and obnoxious French\american (yes a dangerous mix) who was looking for accomodation. Which of course he didn't find with us. I am pleased to announce that even though I don't like beer even I drank 2 1/2 steins, Glenn on the other hand drank 5 and Andrea and Linda both clocked up 4 - which was Andrea's goal. Saw some interesting drunken shenanigans on the way out of octoberfest, which I wont share here..... so you can probably guess. Octoberfest was definitely an experience worth having.

And then we arrived here in hot and sticky singapore. Our last stop before home. Singapore is prettier than I expected - But that might be because the singapore GP finished the day before we arrived. Shopping has been the top of the agenda. We have bought suits that we will get just before we leave and Glenn has been looking for a laptop but has been disappointed that they haven't been much (if at all) cheaper than at home. We went and did the Night safari last night and that was fantastic, we saw a lot of animals and really quite close up.

Anyway, time to run, be home tomorrow!


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Thats Amore!!

Hi all,

Venice was outstounding. Truth be told a large part of the day was spent in murano oggling at a lot of beautiful glass. We could have spent a fortune in murano, but we settled for a small fortune instead. Glenn wasnt that fussed on going to murano, but he is the one that spent the most money on some particularly beautiful goblets. Fingers crossed that we get them home in one piece.

well we got booted off the cruise first thing in the morning, and then had to lug or suitcases to the train station where we found out after the lugging that there was a free shuttle!! grrr. We ended up on an earlier train and enjoyed spending the 4 hours to rome looking at the scenery. finding the hotel at the other end wasnt so fun as i have lost or thrown out the itinerary. Thankfully the information centre knew where it was and gave us a map.

Rome is an amazing place. You walk around a corner and go wow, I wonder what that is. We did the colloseum and hop on hop off tour on the first day, then walked from one side to the other taking in the temple ruins where julius ceasar was probably stabbed, the pantheon, trevi fountain, spanish steps and borghese villa. Today was all about the vatican and boy do my feet hurt!! Amazing though!! SOOO much to see in the vatican museums, sistine chapel and basillica.

Wow, off to germany in the morning!!



Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ahh Internet......

Hi all,

we are alive! I promise!

The problem has been that I refuse to pay 65c US per MINUTE for internet while on the cruise and most of the days a spent climbing monuments and not finding internet cafes.

We are today in Dubrovnik Croatia and it truly is a beautiful little walled city. We are going to climb and walk around the wall soon, but was desparate for the internet so decided to do this first.

We have been to many wonderful places.

CANNES - the french riviera
Is a lovely spot with so much character. and lots of casinos. Go figure. We took a tour around the town and up to the castle on the hill, then had a nosey around the boat regatta in the marina. Dad - we found you a boat or two.....

Florence\Pisa - Italy

Wow, florence was beautiful. So much to look at it this old city. We joined 2 other couples that are at our dinner table and hired a cab for the day to take us to florence and Pisa. He was fabulous and spoke pretty good english. We saw the most colourful ( and biggest )church we have ever seen, and the old town bridge over the river. we decided against q'ing for the real david statue and settled for the replica in a nearby square. Pisa was very cool and well worth going to have a look at. They are currently cleaning up the leaning tower and it looks good.


Because we are going back to rome after the cruise we decided not to go into Rome, we instead stayed around the port town and found the markets were were very good. everything was 5 euros ($10). bought some trinkets.


By now I had a throat infection so wasn't feeling the best. I had to pay $135USD to the Dr on the ship to get antibiotics. Anyway, my big thing to see in Naples was Pompei, so we found our way to the trainstaion and bought tickets and got told to go to platform 3. The problem was that there were 3 platform 3's. Eventually we found the right one and were on our way. We paid the extr 10 Euros each for the english speaking tour guide and he was definitley worth it. He had a wealth of information. We even went into a brothel that was well preserved and had "menu items" as pictures above each bedroom door. They also had very phallic arrows on the buildings and in the streets pointing to the "Luminaries". Overall it was definitely worth going to see, but boy was it hot!

Santorini - Greece
Beautiful. Just like the pictures. The ship is anchored in the harbour and you take a tender boat to the bottom of the cliffs. You then have 3 choices of getting to the town at the top. Walk 589 steps, take a donkey up the 589 steps or take the gondola. we chose the gondola, which I loved, but Glenn hated. We walked back down avoiding donkeys and donkey doo, and that was hard work too. felt sorry for those walking up!

Athens - Greece
The Acropolis with the parthenon is an amazing experience - but not so much with thousands of people trying to get up there at the same time!! but it was worth the hike. we then did the hop on hop off bus around the city and went shopping in the old part of the town - the Plaka.

Oh we love sea days too. Forced days of rest on a cruise are just what you need so you don't burn out completely.

And now we are in dubrovonik, and tomorrow venice and the end of the cruise!! that will be a sad time we have loved the cruise.

I am sorry about the lack of photos, but we never know when we are going to get internet and dont carry the usb cable. but there will be lots at the end!



Monday, September 7, 2009

El Barcelona and a catchup

Hi all,

This key board is better....=0)

well as you might have guessed, we didn´t end up getting married again as we didn´t have enough time to see everything that was there. We also didn´t have enough time to gamble much, i think we spent a total of ten USD in the slot machines and didnt win any of the million dollar jackpots. Oh well, means we actually have to pay for this trip afterall. Better email the bank manager asking to extend our mortgage. Sigh.

Getting to Paris was not fun. 3 flights totalling 15 hours plus 6 hours in airports was bad enough. However, then we found that the old 747 on the longest flight, and this means less leg room. Flights have never been terribly comfortable for poor old 6 foot 4 Glenn, so every cm counts. The flight was oversold so they were turning people away as well, but the worst thing was that the guy sitting in front of glenn insisted on trying to put his seat back and ramming it into his knees all the time. He spoke english and understood what was being said, but kept thinking that Glenn´s legs would magically shrink in the time that we were flying. glenn was completely over the whole thing by the time we got to paris, so we forked out the $40 euros for a taxi to the hotel. It was worth every penny. The hotel room was pretty small (you could just walk around the double bed), but we expected that. The great thing was the location. We could look out the window and see the top of the eiffel tower. 20m from the hotel there was a little supermarket, cafe bars and a whole street with patisseries, cheese, wine, fruit and flower shops. It was awesome and felt like we lived there. The metro wasn´t far away so we could get to the lourve etc. The lourve was phenomenal. I think that we did 2 out of 3 sections which was pretty good for about 4 hours. We then got on the hop on hop off bus and did a circuit seeing most of the sights, including the champs elysee, arc de triomphe, trocadero, notre dame, river seine and of course the eiffel tower. We spent 2 days exploring the city and it was no where near long enough. It was an awesome 1st anniversary though, I bet we can´t top that next year.

We are here in barcelona and about to board our cruise ship. Barcelona is nice and the best thing we have seen was the Magic fountain show which was part of a night tour that we did last night. It is a huge fountain that for 10 minutes every hour bursts into a show incorporating light and sound with the fountain. The rest of the night tour was ok, there are some fantastic buildings around the city ( like a church whose name escapes me, but it has been under construction for 100 years). The architect Gaudi features everywhere, and you can spot his work a mile away as it is more like an artwork than a building. Another highlight was of course drinking sangria in the sun yesterday. It has certainly been hot (over 30deg).

bye for now.....


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Vegas & Paris

hi all

this will be short post as this is a non qwerty keyboard so i cant touch type.....

vegas was AMAZING. i decided it was a wow city. everything is wow and HUGE. somuch to see and do. we went to old vegas (freemont st) and right upand down the strip. it was so hot that we didnt go out till three in the arvo and back to the room about two in the morn. we saw cirque du soleil mystereand the blue man group. both were fantastic. MnM world was cool too. oh and we didnt win our fortunes, but we only gambled about ten bucks......

we have fallenin love with paris and want to move here. it is truly breath taking. our hotel is just off a shopping street with food galore and we can see the top of the eiffel from our room. off to barcelona in the morn, but we wish we werent. still so much to do.....

byee for now