I am utterly hopeless. So I'll try to post all the photos to Facebook and hope for better luck there. I won't hold my breath.
Anyway, here's the blog and the aforementioned ONE Bamberg photo.
7:04 a.m. Up just about an hour. We are in another lock, with a difference: apparently Europe has a Continental Divide just as the U.S. does. From the time we left Budapest, I understand we've gone through more than 60 locks, all raising us up. The lock we're in now is lowering us. (As I say, interesting.)
10:41 Lock after lock. We're waiting in line to pass through the next one. I'm sitting here with a cup of hot chocolate. And between sentences managed to spill half a cup of it over my lap. Immediately stripped down, cleaned up as best I could, realized I have only one clean pair of pants. Hurriedly sent 3 pair of pants off to the laundry opting for the 50 percent surcharge to get them back in 3 hours. They haven't yet picked up the laundry bag from the hall, and I'm praying there is no repeat of the incident.
11:59 We've been passing through a very large town for 15 minutes or so. No idea what it is. Preparing to dock.
1:00 Everyone off the ship for city tour of Bambeck, a town of which I don't recall ever having heard, except for the BambergSymphony Orchestra. Typical German city, cobblestone streets, relatively untouched by the war. Tons of people. Tons. Another Viking ship in town at the same time, heavy on other tourists. The result being that whenever I wanted to take a picture of something, there were throngs of people in the way.
Don't know if they were having a garbage strike or what, but piles of full plastic garbage bags were piled up in front of buildings. We walked up to the cathedral...cathedrals seem to favor being built on hills, to find it closed. More panhandlers than I can recall having seen anywhere else we've been.
The City Hall is interesting. Story goes that all the lands were owned by the Catholic church, and when the people of Bamberg decided they wanted a city hall, they asked the bishop for land to build it on. The bishop said “no,” so they built it in the middle of the river, with a bridge running through it.
On the way back from the cathedral, Barbara and I stopped at an ice cream shop where I got a chocolate milkshake. Nice. Barbara's really a character, and I like her.
It was another instance where the ship dropped us off and, to save cruising time, went ahead through several locks—which with busy river traffic means having to wait in line to get in and out. Buses picked us up at 5:00 where they'd dropped us off. We didn't get lost this time, but it took us over an hour and a half to drive to where the ship was docked along the river bank. Passed through several small towns and past a huge U.S. army base which, with the Germans unlikely to rise up again any time soon, and with the Russians not an imminent threat, has outlived its usefulness and will be closed this October. What will be done with the base I don't know.
I'm really getting comfortable with several of the other passengers and apparently word that I'm a writer has gotten around. At dinner tonight Pat (who formerly worked for IBM...husband, Terry, a former golf pro), introduced me to a couple who joined us at our table as “our resident author.” Kind of embarrassing, but kind of fun.
And now we're on our way to Wurzberg, where we're scheduled to arrive at 9 a.m.
Oh, yes, and we've left the Danube/Main canal, and are now on the Main. (Again I was surprised to realize Europe has a Continental Divide, until I realized that from Budapest to Regensberg all the locks lifted the ship, and after Regensberg, they're all lowering us. Ain't Geography fun?)
Dorien will be posting frequent blogs while on his current European River Cruise, and you're also invited to check out his website at www.doriengrey.com.