Sunday, August 30, 2009
Anniversary Trip, Overview
Our trip within a trip, what I call our Anniversary Trip, covered three countries in four days, and was a pure delight. It couldn't have been better conceived (plans suggested by Benjamin) or have run more smoothly. I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it myself. John drove 169 on the autobahn. That's kilometers per hour, of course, but it's still fast. Let's see, now. How fast is that? I just went to calculate me.com and learned that it's 105.01173148810943 MPH. Don't tell John. We lived, after all.
Brugges was a fabulous and bustling city to start.
It probably wasn't as busy as Amsterdam, since we didn't have to protect ourselves from bicyclists, but it was still very fast paced. I'm glad we started there, while our energy level was highest. Our photos reflect the luxurious history so evident in all the places we visited. Any history lover could easily overindulge, and I did. The overall impression of the cities on our trip is that if Europe were a restaurant and we had ordered Ghent as an appetizer, I would seriously consider calling the waiter back to cancel my entree, or have it packaged to take home, and just enjoying another couple orders of Ghent. It was that wonderful.
One of the most marvelous things about the city is the people. When I do my in-depth on each of the cities we visited, I'll go more in depth on that. I've got pages of journal to go through, but I've just about hogged Ben's computer long enough... But I can't resist putting in a few more photos of Ghent:
Luxembourg was not what I had expected until the morning we left, when we finally found the beautiful ancient forests and castles I had read so much about. I'll save all of that for later, but for now, here's just a taste of Luxembourg City. The lead photo is also John and me on our anniversary in that city.
We saw two castles on the way to Cologne, Germany (which they spell Köln). The first was good, but the second was the stuff of dreams and legends. Cologne itself was a quick trip, with lots of walking and playing with the kids. Here are just a few shots of Cologne, Germany—the final memories of an awesome anniversary trip.
We didn't spend the night, but drove back on the autobahn (where John hit his infamous speed catching up with Ben after nearly losing him) and then into Holland and back to Ben and Ruth's home.
I'm told that one of the blessings on the trip was not being able to hear the girls screaming on this last leg of the journey. They were tired, and they were tired of being in the car. It was such a wonderful trip, though, and while I'm sure Ben and Ruth suffered through the melt-down in the car, eventually the real memories of how good the girls were the entire remainder of the time will rise to the top. That's what the photos will show, as well. They were as good as gold. This grandparent business gives us just the fun parts, I know. They're sure good parents. I wish all children had the patience, love and support these two little girls do. What a changed world we might have.