Going home

May 7-8 – Munich/Sacramento/Concord

Guten Morgen Nate! (Good morning!)

We got up, had breakfast, checked out but left our bags at the front desk. We wanted to spend part of another day hanging around Salzburg. We crossed over the Salzach and strolled around that side of the town, had one final lunch at Demel’s, then returned to the hotel to pick up our bags.

We took a cab to the train station and waited on the platform for our train to Munich. One last chance to look at the mountains around Salzburg.

View from Salzburg train station

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The hills are alive – with the sound of Mozart

May 4-6 – Salzburg, Austria

Gruess Gott Nate! (That’s the way they say hello in Austria and Bavaria).

We got up, packed up, had breakfast, checked out and headed to the train station to catch our train to Salzburg. Like many large cities in Europe, Vienna has more than one train station. We had arrived from Krakow in the South train station, we left for Salzburg from the West train station. Here’s a picture of Linda and me in the train station, and a picture of the train car we road in. This time we were back a first class car. It was very nice. We saw a lot of beautiful countryside; Don took a lot of pictures too.

Vienna Westbahnhof Inside of OBB first class car Austrian field of yellow Austrian country church Austrian countryside

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It’s good to be the seat of empire.

May 1-3 – Vienna, Austria

Guten Tag! (That’s “good day” in German)

We left Krakow early in the morning. It was sprinkling a little, so we had to use our umbrellas as we walked almost a mile to the train station through the nearly empty streets.

Linda and Don had some coffee while we waited for the train to arrive. This time we were going to be riding in a 2nd class car. Trains in Europe usually have two classes of cars, first and second. The first class cars are a little roomier and nicer. Our train passes allowed us to use first class cars, but this train didn’t have any.

PKP car corridor PKP train (between Krakow and Vienna)

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Wawel is cool!

April 27-30 – Krakow, Poland

Dzien dobry Nate!  (That’s “Good Day” in Polish).

We got to the Prague train station early so we wouldn’t miss our train.  It was a little scary.  It seemed very confined and dark and there was construction going on and pigeons flying around inside and a lot of people that looked a little spooky.  Even the police were traveling in groups of three.

Inside the Prague train station

Eventually our train came in and we got on.  We gave the conductor our tickets, and he showed us to our compartment on the train.  It was made up with two bunk beds, a sink, and a closet area.  Don had to climb up into the upper berth, I slept in Linda’s purse.  I guess I should say I tried to sleep; between Don’s snoring and Linda yelling at Don to be quiet I didn’t get a lot of sleep on the train.  It was fun, but I don’t much care if I don’t get to do it again.

Our sleeper compartment Flat Stanley on upper bunk

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Where did all these people come from?

April 23-27 – Prague, Czech Republic

Dobry Den Nate (that’s “Good Day” in Czech):

Our stay in Rothenburg was over, so it was time to take another train trip. This time we’re going to Prague, which is in a country called The Czech Republic. It used to be part of a larger country called Czechoslovakia, but a few years ago they decided to spit into two countries. The other part of Czecheslovakia is now called Slovakia.

The picture below is a special train car that just shuttles between Rothenburg and Steinach. This was the same train we arrived on.

Train between Rothenburg and Steinach

After another train change in Ansbach, we made it to Nuremburg again, were we had time for a quick lunch in the train station (left) before catching the train that would take us all the way to Prague (right).

Nuernburg train station Train to Prague

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We bombed what?

April 21-22 – Rothenburg-ob-der-Tauber, Germany

Monday morning, April 21st we packed our bags, checked out of our Munich hotel (Muenchner Kindl), and walked to the train station (less than a mile away).

Here’s me and Linda sitting in the train on the way to our next city.

Linda and FS on train to Rothenburg

Today we’re going to Rothenburg-ob-der-Tauber, which is a big name for a little city. It means “Red Fortress on the Tauber (river)” in German. The train trip was interesting from a number of points. We had to change trains several times. Europeans travel by train a lot more than people in the US do. The train systems of the different countries work together, and the major cities are linked together by really fast trains. If you are going to a small town, you need to change trains one or more times, to slower, older trains.

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Welcome to the land of beer and jet lag

April 16-20 – Munich, Germany

Dear Nate:

Yay!  April 16th and we’re leaving for Europe!  Don and Linda packed all our bags, and the four of us (“Bear” came along too) stopped for dinner in Concord on our way to Sacramento.  Our plane leaves April 17th, so we spent the night in a motel near the Sacramento airport.  For the next three weeks we’re going to visit Germany, the Czech Republic, Poland and Austria.

We’re going to write a journal for each city we stay in; this journal is for Munich, Germany (and the trip there).

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