- Catching up with our wonderful friends in Friedrichshafen. With some people it doesn't matter if you haven't seen each other for a year, you just click back into place.
- Speaking German again. Many years ago I got a B at A-Level for German (trust me, that was a remarkable result!) but I haven't used my German in earnest since a trip to Austria about ten years ago! Actually I was quite amazed by what came back and I found that I could understand a good deal more than I thought I would be able to.
- Enjoying the delights of the spa in Cologne. Spas in Europe are quite different than in the UK (!) but we rose to the challenge!
- Seeing photographs of bombed out Cologne. I hadn't realised how much the folks of Cologne had suffered during WW2. The pictures on the bombed out cathedral were really shocking.
- Marvelling at the European train system. Man, the trains are just great over there. They are clean with two decks and they go super quick!
- Altitude sickness! So (and, while I'm going to relay this story, you just know that D will tell the embellished version) while in Switzerland we took the train up to the Jungfraujoch. This is incredibly high and we were amazed to see all the snow. The sun was shining and it was just beautiful so off we set for a jolly ramble through the snow. We made it to the Monchjochhutte (the starting point if you are going to climb the next mountain, the Monch) and were very grateful to find hot drinks at the remote hut. But walking in those sort of conditions was far more challenging than you might imagine and both of us ended the day feeling elated but a little lacking in oxygen. D suffered particularly and was very ill all over Lauterbrunnen station. We thought altitude sickness was kinda showbiz. D maintains that I just had a case of 'woman feeling a bit poorly'.
- Train avalanches! On our final day I thought a lovely trip in an old fashioned train up to some lovely Alpine gardens might be just the thing. Except that almost at the top we were struck by an avalanche of snow, rock and trees. Now hanging over an extremely high precipice (OK so I am exaggerating just slightly) is pretty scary but the good people a the Jungfraubahn eventually got us down.
- Cheese! Tonight we have burgers with gruyere for dinner. Swiss cheese is the greatest!
- Waterfalls. Of all natural phenomenon, waterfalls are my absolute favourite. Our room overlooked a lovely waterfall and we had an amazing trip to the Trummelbach Falls which are spectacular.
And, given that D has just indicated that the BBQ is ready, I had better go. All in all a great trip. Photographs will be up as soon as D has found the wire! ;-)