Date: 11- 13/09/2017 From/To: Przewloka – Dubrauke Distance: 719 Km Total Distance: 15871 Km Weather: Sunny Road: Paved
During our ride from Andrew to Dubrauke, the GPS started to play up. After 150km it showed roads which didn’t exist and was consistently recalculating. I realise that the scope has changed and the GPS used the world map as back up. So I used the GPS as an direction indicator, which didn’t work so well when going through a major town. At the end we managed and stopped on a ‘Windmill hotel’. The interior was down my alley, in the eating area there were some water basins, with small waterfalls and in the hallway were some tables with china on the ceiling, were the cups had some bulbs in them and were the actually lights.
Two days later we arrived at Marion’s and Pitschl’s place. Marion just has started her REHA for her new knee replacement, but she organized to have a day off. When we arrived, she was just having a training run on the road and was surprised when two motorcycles pulled up close to her. Here is the first picture with Pitschl, Sigrid, Rico and Marion.
Not long after, Anke arrived with here daugther Tara-Marie.
Marion and Pitschel had organized dinner for us, so we had dinner together before we continued to talk. By this time, Katia was waking up, she had night shift and was sleeping all day. I hope we didn’t disturbe her sleep too much. Here is a picture of them both with Sigrid.
And here is the youngest member of the Förster family and we convinced Anke’s Sohn to sit on the bike.
And here is a group picutre with everbody who was visiting this day.
We were talking for a long time and looked at some pictures from Marions and Pitschls travel. They traveled a lot in Europa and gave us some ideas.
The next morning Marion had to go to her Reha, so we waited with her for the pickup.
After Marion has left, we packed up the bikes and made our way to Prague.
Date: 012 – 15/07/2017
From/To: Copenhagen – Rügen
Distance: 93 Km
Total Distance: 6509 Km
Weather: Cold, Drizzling, Sunny
After a nice breakfast we left Niklas and went over the impressive Őresund Bridge to Trelleborg, where we boarded the ferry.
The ferry was quite luxerious, we even had power points and free Wifi J. Just before we arrived the sun was setting, the sky with the clouds looked great.
Gabi and Matias picked us up and showed us the way. They had rentet a house and there was one free room earmarked for us! We could not resist..:-).
Next morning we had breakfast and then around 9AM we went to pick up fresh bread. There are a couple of boxes based on an honor system., you take something out and put the money into the box.
With the fresh bread in the trunk, we started our site seening tour. Gabi and Matias had a couple of things in mind. First we stoped at a sort of house boat, which was really a caffee/restaurante where they were selling as well fresh fish. On our way from the carpark to the boat we found a very intreging sign, be aware of “Otter” for the next 1km.
We had a yummy fish breadroll before we continued. The next stop is a nice beach with ‘Strandkörbe’. I’m not sure but I never realised that the ‘Strandkörbe’ are a great invention. You can sit or lay down, have shade or not and you can lock your belongings in a locker under the sea when you have a swim. Anyway, we had a short stroll and some discussion with a local about a possible parking fine if we park in this area. Since we had a very brief visit, we took the risk J
Form here we went to an öco shop on a farm, which sold all kind of products, from bread, nudels and locally produced marmelade
The company logo were gummy boots hanging upside down.
After buying all that food we got hangry, so the next stop was a coffee with a marvellous view. We could watch the ferries passing by a.
The next planned stop was a restaurante, unfortunatelly theye were closed, but when we had a look around I found the nice motor boat, it looked like one of the Stoertebecker boats.
Ok, Gabi did book dinner on a restaurant, overlooking the stage of the ‘Stoertebecker Festspiele’. The location looked expensive, but to our surprise it was quite ok.
Just a sculpture in the entrance area.
Here we celebrated a nice day. In the middle is the Stoertebecker stage, it’s not good visible at this picture.
Here I sumed in, you can see all the people seated ant the stage.
Even more zoom, the setup had as well horses and ships
At the end of the performance there was even a fire work, that we could visit from our table. What a great location.
Gabi and Matias had planned to visit “Hiddensee”, a small Isalnd west of Ruegen. We hopped on a ferry and after an hour we arrived on Hiddensee.
By accident we stumbled across a fishery museum, which had plenty of information how the fisherman were living in this area 100 years ago. Each family had a runen, which was used to determine who had to get out to check if the traps are ok.
From here we walked through an area which was a mixture out of ‘Lüneburger Heide’ and Beach.
When we continued we came across the summer house of Asta Nielsen, a famous German movie star. The house had a unique structure with a round corner on one side. In the house was some documentation about Asta Nielsen life as well as the architect who designed the house.
At the end of our walk we ended up at the harbour, where we hopped on the ferry to get back. Today we planned a BBQ for dinner, so we borrowed the BBQ from the host. The meat from a local butcher was great!
Next morning I heard a strange noise and had a look at the roof, and here they were, two storks ‘Störche’. I haven’t seen them that close.
Today we planned to have a round trip with a steam train, the ‘Rasender Roland’ and then return with a ship.
On the way we came across a strainge houst. Looks like the builder had the plan upside down J.
Next we went to the train station an waited for the steam train. The train has a smaller gauge then the modern trains, so they added an additional rail, so both trains could use the same track. The sun was shining, so we decided to sit in an open carriage.
After the train we walked to the habour, where the ship was waiting.
We found a viking boat there, not sure what the importance of it is, but it looked nice. On the other side, there was a ‘Rowing Ferry’, a guy who rowed the boat from one sie to the other and took some people.
Below is just a house that looked quite iteresting.
During our cruse, we found a small Island with a building on it in the middle of the lake. This was apparently used to de-magnetise ships, but it’s not in use anymore.
After a quick catch up with Reni and her friend Margret in her Feriendomizil Speranza
we followed an invitation of our host for a BBQ. What a delicious BBQ and interesting evening! We talked to the middle of the night.
Tomorrow we would leave Ruegen and would travel to Schweden.
Date: 05-12/06/2017 From/To: Eppelborn- Berlin – Rügen Distance: 1059Km Total Distance: 3560Km Road: High Way,
We went back to Berlin to pick up some parts ordered, went shopping for some electronic equipment added some minor modifications to the bikes. The bash plate was rubbing against the exhaust, so it needed some modifications. Since it was off J, I added a tool pipe to the bash place and Klaus and I made a table with the H&B boxes as base.
Here is the finished product, doesn’t look much but works well when you are short of table space.
After finishing all the small tasks, we set off to Insel Rügen, to meet with Reni. She moved a year ago to Rügen to manage an apartment complex and we were keen to have a look at her new work place/home called ‘Feriendomizil Speranza’.
We meet as well with Gerlind and Peter to plan our Iceland trip, which starts mid next week J
The ride to Insel Ruegen was nice; we arrived at the evening without any incidents. The next morning Peter and Gerlind arrived, and as well Julian, Verena’s son which we hadn’t seen for a long time. I wouldn’t have recognised him on the street, he;s grown up and now sports a beard and long hair.
In the afternoon we had a nice stroll through Sellin. At the beach there was a fun run this afternoon; people were running through the sand, up and down the stair, through the water ….., looked really exhausting. After watching this exhausting activity, we were hungry and went to a nice restaurant. Food was great and at the evening we started to plan where we are going to meet in Iceland. Peter and Gerlind would arrive two days earlier on the other side of Iceland (Reykjavik), we would arrive later on the east side (Seydisfjodur). So we opted for an accommodation not far on the east side. It feels unreal, in three days we on the ferry and in five days we are in Iceland.
The next day we all started with a nice long breakfast.
All of us? No a small green sheep had to stay on the balcony and watch J
After breakfast, we went for a walk on the beach and Gerlind took JK, Julian’s dog for a walk. Here some pictures from the walk.
Sigrid had a swim, and JK tried to rescue here J
The swan was not sure what to make out of it…
Peter and Gerlind said good bye and drove back to Berlin, to get ready for the Iceland holiday. We got ready for the next day to get to Hirtshals on Denmark, where the ferry to Iceland leaves.
The next day we said good bye to Reni and Julian and went off to HIrtshals where we arrived around 7PM. We had dinner and got ready for an early departure.
Date: 02-04/06/2017 From/To: Verdun – Eppelborn Distance: 168Km Total Distance: 1996Km Road: High Way,
We took our time to pack up, said goodbye to our host and off we went to Hackenberg. To get there we used Sigrid’s mobile as guide since the Garmin map didn’t include France. We arrived a bit earlier and used the time to have a picknic lunch before this Fort was opened for visitors.
What a fantastic tour! The technology of the time was impressive. You could see that the design was based on the Forts from the First World War, but the shortcomings of the previous forts were removed. It was fully equipped to facilitate 1000 man, including kitchen, dentist, hospital, air condition, water recycling station, 54000L tanks for water …. There was as well a train net of a couple of km in the fort which was used to bring the ammunition from the storage to the gun positions. Everything was electrical, the train, lights…..
Dieselgenerator, kitchen and the side of a huge water tank.
Dentist and Theatre
And the train system
And the tarot, very similar to the one in Fort de Vaux, only bigger and with improved technology.
From here we continued to Eppelborn where the European Ulysses club gathering was.
As part of our registration we had a hotel room book but had difficulty to find it! Actually, we’ll blame the GPSJ. The Ulysses club meeting was at another side and a bus service was organized to get us there. On the way we meet Ian, a Switzer member who accommodated and accompanied Lance and Lesly, the other couple from Australia, Queensland. It was a nice evening and we were talking to a lot of people and even got some German Ulysses club T-Shirts.
We meet as well Arvid and Arne, members from Norway. We had great fun to discuss our planned route and got some additional ideas for our trip.
The next day there was a ride organized. Divided into groups with a maximum of ten people, including the ride leader and the Tailend Charli we set off. We haven’t been in Saarland before and were impressed with the beautiful landscape and sweep roads. Our first stop was the Saar loop, which had a whooping totally amazing view point. The next stop was the ‘Talsperre Nonnweiler’, which had a nice restaurant where we had
some coffee and cake. When the other groups came in, I saw a beauty of a motorcycleJ. I was talking to the lady owner, and she agreed with me, the bike is beautiful. Finally, I’m not aloneJ. To be honest, I’m writing this blog at the end of our Iceland trip (I know, I have to hurry up to catch up with the blogs), this bike, as nice as it looks, would be completely inappropriate for our trip. Still I like the look of it.
After I got over the excitement, we continued to the ‘Schaumber Alm’, the highest point in Saarland. From here it was only a couple of km to our hotel. At the evening were meeting again at the same place as yesterday and we meet again amazing people I get the feeling there is not enough time to talk to most of the people .
The next day we took it easy. It was drizzling in the morning, so we chickened out and gave the organized ride a miss. Instead we checked out the Kirmiss and ended up on a large Ferris Wheel. The view was quite nice.
At night we meet again at the same place. This time we meet Volker, he has a bike with a sidecar. We started to talk about how it handle, why he put it onto his motorcycle and started to exchange email addresses, he noticed the name Henning in Sigrid address book. As it turns out, he is one of Henning’s good friends. We meet Henning two years ago on a HU meeting and celebrated New Year ‘s Eve with him in Sydney and stayed in contact with him since. It’s a small world.
Now the meeting is over and we make our way back to Berlin. Here we will finish the bike setup and collect all the things we had ordered, but sent and delivered to Klaus.
Date: 11-21/05/2017 From/To: Berlin Distance:– Road:–
Today is the day… I have to go to the migration department (Auslaenderbehorde) and try to get my six month visa. We organized all requested papers and went to the office. As it turned out, we had all papers. Klaus brought the proof that he is owning the property were we are registered, I brought proof that I’m married to Sigrid and some Bank statement and not even after 3 hours and 180AU$ later, I got the permission to stay for 6 Month in Europa. Success! Then we rushed home and off we went to visit Freya. She organized a cabaret evening in the ‚Bar jeder Vernunft’. The vicinity is an old mirror tent, and it looks like it is from the 1930th. We were sitting right up front close to the singer, she had a great voice. The evening was entertaining and on the way home, we stopped at a Döner shop and had some Curry Wurst and Döner.
The next day we were invited to Carsten’s Birthday party which c-conveniently for us was at their new house. It was really impressive what Carsten and Gabi did with the old house. There were hardly any original walls left. The whole house was opened up. The most impressive part for me was how they converted the cellar into a marvellous bedroom. Ahh, and they had a sheep in the garden, with a crownJ.
The next day we finished the bikes and Klaus was test riding the ‘BumbleBee’ J. All appears to be in order. In the evening we went to went to Christina for dinner. It was a nice relaxed evening and Niklas played some piano tunes for us. In fact it was so relaxed that I forgot to take pictures….
Next day we moved back to Bodo and Gabi for Gabi’s 60st Birthday. We’d organized some tickets for ‘The One’ a show in the Friedrich Stadt Palast as a surprise for her that worked great!
. The costumes, the music the light effects, the acrobatics and the stage were fantastic! But, as always in these shows we were only allowed to take pictures at the end of the show.
At night we celebrated Gabi’s birthday at 24:00. Well, I opened a bottle of Champaign, unfortunately the Champaign started its escape and it sprayed all over the room, Bodo and me. So the celebration was delayed until the mess was cleaned up. ‘Luckily’ there are no pictures J
The next day we strolled through the city before we were going to a Chinese restaurant which had a buffet too large for us to try everything. However we gave it a good shot J.
Back to Klaus and Connies, to organize some birthday gifts for Sigrid, we went pre-birthday shopping. The weather was nice so Klaus and Connie decided to join on the Yamaha. The bike must be around 35 years old and still looks amazing.
We drove to a BMW, where I had pre-ordered some new riding trousers for Sigrid. Connie and Klaus heard that Sigrid’s rain pants were leaking, so they organized some new rain pants for her.
Today is Sigrid’s Birthday. I was busy organising things and preparing the bikes so I had no time to organize something for Sigrid (lame excuseJ. but Connie organized and decorated a great birthday table for Siggi.
Connie had a great suggestion for Sigrid’s birthday breakfast, the ‘Kings Garden academy’. Here we meet with Freya, Gabi, Robert, Klaus and Conni. It was a very tranquil breakfast.
After the breakfast, we said good bye to our friends and went with Klaus and Connie for a walk to Moorlake. The intention was to visit the ‘Pfaueninsel’, a small island nearby. When we arrived at the ferry- guess what-the ferry was out of order for maintenance, just today… So we walked back and had another go at the ‘Koeniglichen Gartenakademie’ for coffee and cake. At night we celebrated with a glass of Champaign at Klaus and Connie’s balcony.
Next day was Gabi’s birthday, but she had to work, so we decided to meet at night at a restaurant with a beautiful view. Unfortunately our tires arrived and we had to get them changed today, at least on one bike. So in a rush we went to the tire shop, got the tyres on the yellow bike (BumbleBee) fitted and rushed to Gabi house. Well, rushing was relative, since we hit the rush hour. Stop and go for nearly two hours. Needless to say, we arrived late and Gabi’s father was patiently waiting for us. We hopped in his car and arrived just an hour later L. The view and the food were fantastic; from the portion size I would guess it was a French chef J
Gabi organized for the next day a beauty treatment for Sigrid as a birthday gift. So we split up, I went back to the tyre shop to get the rear tyre on the red bike changed. During this time, Sigrid went to the beauty treatment. We meet around 6PM close to Kudamm. I was surprised, when a foreign women approached me. Well it took a while before I realised that it was Sigrid J
And for Saturday, we planned to go with Gabi to some nurseries to buy some plants/trees. At the end Gabi found some rhododendron and blue berries, they get delivered mid next week. In the evening Gabi organized a gathering at Mathias rowing club.
The adventure was not finished jet, Gabi organized as well a boat trip at Linum. Germany has many channels which are connected to a huge network. In Linum is the Amtmann channel which is part of the network. Around the channel is a wild life reserve, where birds rest during their winter migration. The boat had an electric motor, so we had during the whole trip no engine noise.
During the trip we got hungry, so we had a nice lunch in the restaurant nearby, had a look at a goat cheese and went to a milk refill station. I thought that is a great invention. The refill station is on the farmer’s property, and you refill your own bottles.
In the evening Gabi arranged a meeting with Heidi Hetzer. We met Heidi in Australia when she was doing her world trip with Hudo, a 1930 Hudson car. She stayed with us for a couple of days before she continued her journey to Melbourne. We meet at a restaurant called ‘Kaptain’s Kajüe’, it was a picturesque setup at a nice lake (Wannsee). Heidi arrived with her red Opel GT, nice car. This was the last day of partying, well at least in Berlin J
Date: 6-11/05/2017 From/To: Berlin Distance:– Road:–
The service on the yellow bike wasn’t done, so we decided to do the usual – change oil and spark plugs and get new brake pads -our self’s. Changing the spark plugs required a bit more work than expected. It looked like we had to dismantle half of the bike J
In the next couple of days we organized the bike insurance, the registration and organized a visa for myself, since we would like to stay for more than 3 Month in Europa. Now we are officially residing at Connie’s and Klaus’s house. To get mail in Germany to that address our name had to be put onto the letterbox; otherwise the mail would be returned to sender.
Klaus and I successfully entertained the girls, since doing all the paperwork is so boring.
To get the bikes complete, we needed some additional parts, which we ordered in the meantime. That included a larger windscreen, bash plate, luggage rack and a top box. All that got delivered and fitted to the bikes.
We needed as well a tent, since we left ours in Australia due to weight restriction on the flight. We talked to Steffi and Julia at Anita’s weddings anniversary and they mentioned they had a spare one. They were even so nice to bring it to Klaus’s house. They had the tent spare after they bought a VW bus.
Date: 2-5/05/2017 From/To: Berlin Distance: 1286km Road: Highway
After a nice stroll through the city with Bodo, Gabi and Linda, we got picked up by Conni und Klaus. We made a detour to Polo to buy Chain Oil. On this occasion I remembered that I left my raingear in Australia-it was leaking anyway after a while. So we had a look and found something really nice and inconspicuous. Siggi tried the jacket as well
We had a nice evening at Klaus and Connie’s Place, with lots of talking and planning. The next day we started our trip to collect the bikes. First Klaus drove us to our first destination, Gottmadingen, close to the Bodensee. It was raining heavily during our drive; I was hoping that the weather will clear up the next day.
In the evening we arrive at Sonja’s and Sebastian’s house, I took the bike for a short spin.
Then we finalised the paper work and I could drive our first bike to the accommodation. This was a great feeling! After month of planning things started to fall in place.
Next day we were aiming for Aachen to pick up my bike. The weather hadn’t cleared up jet, so I had the opportunity to test my new raingear. We made a small detour to Doris for a coffee and picked up our gear we left there. We arrived later this evening, but I was so excited that I forgot to take any pictures.
We booked some accommodation close by. The hotel had a garage were we could park the bikes; unfortunately Klaus had to park the car in the street. For dinner we organised some pizza that night and went to bed.
The next day we aimed to get back to Berlin. First we tried to get some bike insurance, but that did’t work. We were told to get the insurance in Berlin. Below are our two beauties
So we hopped onto the bikes and off we went. The weather cleared up and we arrived in Berlin close to midnight, completely buggered but happy.
Date: 29-30/05/2017 From-To: Berlin Distance: — Road: —
No, I’m not talking about the Australian political party. We were meeting with Sigrid family before we would start to organize the bikes and me my Visa. We used the ICE to get to Berlin. Bodo and Gabi were so nice to pick us up from ‘Ostbahnhof’. On the next day we had a short walk around inner Berlin, trying to get a Currywurst from a famous stall. We forgot that it was Sunday. We kept walking and stumbled across a Beer garden with some stalls.
We had something to eat
and Sigrid gave “Moonshine” a local liquor a go.
We went back to Bodo and Gabi’s flat and checked out possibilities to get to Anita’s and Bernd’s celebration. The location was on the fringe of Berlin, but the public transport is great. So after looking at an public transport app and getting some instructions from Bodo, we were ready to go. Bodo showed us to the train station and we took a picture of the station, so we would know on our way back where to exit the train. So off we went, had a beautiful tour through the outskirts of Berlin. .
Anita and Bernd celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary and invited us last year. When our trip/retirement started to get closer, we thought we would like to attend and celebrate with them together. The location was at the ‘Rübezahl’, a location on Müggelsee, a big lake.
The setup was fantastic.
Anita and Bernd spend a lot of attention to details. On each of our place setting we found small chocolate hart with ‘Liebe ist’ sayings, which we remembered from our youth.
Couples married more than 20 years even got an porcelain angel which was very cuteJ.
We really enjoyed to catch up with our family and appreciated the warm hospitality and the generous setup of the celebration.
As a side note –Sigrid and I tried the whole day to get a currywurst, without success. As we learned now, there is a ‘Midnight Currywurst’ custom at parties in Berlin, that mean that at midnight a currywurst was severed. As you can see, we really enjoyed it. At the end of the night we were ready to take the public transport back, but Dagmar convinced us that it would be better that she would drive us back to Bodo, which she did.
The next day we visited Gabi’s and Bodo’s Garden where lots of flowers were blooming. It was a beautiful day, but it got cold very early, so we packed up and went back to Gaby and Bobo’s flat.
On the last Day, we had still a long task list to finish. Below are some pictures how I felt with the number of tasks and the time remaining.
We packed our luggage and put it on a scale. Hmm, no way that we can take all our stuff with only 30kg luggage per person. At the end, we sacrificed our tent, repacking everything, back, forward, back again until we just made it with 30kg luggage person plus 7Kg hand luggage. Not sure how we can carry that, don’t worry, we will be fine.
And here an attempt to carry most of the luggage.
We finished just in time when the family came to pick us up. Together we had a fare well snack with the family at the airport,
And off we went, Europa we are coming. The first leg was to Doha, where we were lucky enough that each of us would get a 3 seat row, so we could have a good night sleep. The layover was without any problems and we arrived in Frankfurt the next morning.
Now we had to carry that entire luggage to/from the train which was a harder than we thought.
Doris has organized some dinner with friends where we tried some specialties of the regions.
On the next day we had a very relaxing breakfast , visited Dieters grave (Sigrids Dad) and went with Doris and Helga to a restaurant that served freshly harvested ‘Asparagus ‘.
Next day we packed up and left for Berlin. This time we left some luggage at Doris’s place; the plan was we would pick it up later when we pass by her house while picking up the bikes.
We are now in Germany and will start our travel end of May 2017 🙂
We are proud owners of 2 used motorbikes – yes we have managed to get them registered in our name- losts of Bureaucracy – but that’s a different story :-). The Motorbikes will need some final touch ups- like new tyres and oil change.. And then we are off!