Cruising down the river…

image…on a Sunday afternoon. It actually was Sunday morning when we boarded this steamboat for a ride on lake Bierze. It was a lovely morning and we stopped along the way to pick up passengers.

 

I loved the color of the water and the sweet Hansel and Gretel cottages along the way.

The river and river bank were busy on the weekend. These two photos reminded me of paintings. imageimageThe river was an unusual color of cloudy, almost opaque, green and we wondered if this was caused by the type of rock in the area but we forgot to ask.

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Bonigen was one of the stops.

imageAt Ringenberg a group in costume serenaded the steamer.

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We had a small lunch at Bierze and I went back to the hotel for a nap while Charley went up Schynige Platte because it was there.

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GRINDELWALD & KLEIN SCHEINDEGG

 

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We are traveling with 8 day travel passes that we can use for getting on just about any public transport without getting a ticket or paying more. The pass was about $600 for the 8 days. On Saturday, we paid extra to go beyond and above the covered area when we took the cog rail to Klein Scheindegg. The ride was worth it. To go even higher to Jungfraujoch, called the Top of Europe, would have cost an extra $150. Nix to that expensive trip, for beyond a doubt it would have meant freezing cold, probably in clouds and no view. Anyone going there is warned that even the train is cold. But the trip that we took was excellent and most of the photos are from the train window.

 

imageimageWe got out of the train at Klein SCHEINDEGG. This hotel and restaurant was featured in some Clint Eastwood film but ever since Clint had a conversation with an empty chair he has lost some appeal for me.

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The mountain air did make us hungry. I had an excellent Greek salad to go with beer.

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imageWhere are we going tomorrow, Charley?

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LAKE LUCERNE

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As I was arranging my photo shoot the man walked past the window. The picture has a look of noir and it was that kind of day.

Earlier, in good weather, we had taken a boat to Vitznau and then a rack rail up the mountain to Rigi. It was a steep ride into clouds, rain and cold. The windows of the train steamed up and when we got to Rigi in the rain and fog and couldn’t see a thing, we came right back down on the next train.

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We caught a paddle wheel steamer boat to Brunnen.

More rain. Up in 1st class the food looked very good but we hadn’t planned on having lunch just yet.

We left the boat at Brunnen and had lunch, near the dock, at the Seehotel where I took the noir photo. It was fancier than our usual fare, even Churchill had given his approval, in a sketch, signed in 1948.

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After eating we took the next boat to a transport museum and I was reminded how glad I was not to be driving.

imageThe museum looked like a lot of fun but it was soon closing time so we got on the next boat…imageand toasted a fine day.

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PILATUS

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Did the cutout prop and background scenery fool you? Let me show you the real thing!

WE BEGAN THE CLIMB ON THE WORLD’S STEEPEST COGWHEEL RAILWAY

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When the cogwheel stopped we connected with others in the next door train.

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The clouds and wind came in. The large building at the top of Pilatus kept us out of bad weather.  A hotel, restaurant and gift shop, folk musicians and delicious rhubarb pie helped to forget the lack of a view. Sadly, we could not take the gondola back down the mountain because of the bad weather so we had another ride on the cog.

 

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ALMOST ALL THINGS SWISS

Well, readers, just dying of curiosity to know what’s going on in Switzerland….

Its about 7:30 am on what appears overcast cold day and we are going to mt Pilatus, getting there first by way of a boat trip. I am going to wear my jacket and fleece and before the next excursion I may have to find a warmer pair of socks.

imageYesterday, on our arrival day in Lucerne, toward the end of the day, the skies cleared and we walked across this old wooden bridge. Well, it wasn’t that old since it was rebuilt after a fire.imageThere were many people out even a fellow playing a piano organ that could be heard  across the river. This is the Ruess River which drains Lake Lucerne. imageThis photo which looks the other way from the piano player shows  weir, a dam, which controls the Ruess. Do you remember the Wisconsin Ruess? Was he Swiss?

Speaking of nationalities, the young woman at the desk at hotel Falken was Russian.

One of the offerings at the restaurant in the hotel is Asian fondue. No, we haven’t even seen the restaurant. I will take some food pictures the next time I write. Yesterday we ate lunch at a great vegetarian place in the train station. We served ourselves from a hot or cold items in a buffet and then the plate was weighed.

I send this out to you. More tomorrow!

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In Newcastle

 

imagePaula took this lovely photo yesterday from the top of Newcastle castle. The steep hills up from our hotel at Quayside did slow me down a bit but it was exciting and freeing to walk around the city. My first stop was cappuccino and almond croissant and then the Great North Museum in the Newcastle University area and a display of artifacts from Hadrian’s Wall.

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This is from Sewingshields area of Hadrian’s Wall which I remember as an especially challenging day.

We sat outside for a pint in the late afternoon and split up for supper. I went to the Big Mussel and Paula went across the street for Indian food

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Today I climbed uphill again for another almond croissant at Pret a Manger then a visit to the Laing art museum, Marks and Spenser, Kiehl’s and The White Company. So it was mostly a day of shopping.

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On a rainy day stop and smell some inside flowers!

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The End of the Trail

imageWe are happily back to civilization in Carlisle this afternoon, walking about 10 miles in 4 hours. Today the farm fields were flat (we barely notice cows any longer) and we walked along the river Eden coming into Carlisle. Our b&b is near a pub so we’re not going far for supper tonight cause our bodies, especially legs, are aching. My feet are in great shape. I recommend generous application of A&D Ointment each morning.

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The adult sheep had been sheared weeks earlier and many of the lambs were such a large size that they almost knocked their mothers over when they managed to nurse.

We did see a number of dogs today romping in a park on the outskirts of Carlisle and the only cat on the whole trip.

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Looking back over the trip this scene will not be forgotten. We very carefully had come down from this crag and passed some walkers with a little white dog. We turned for a photo and saw him running up the rough stone steps. I think you can see him about halfway up in this photo.

It was the last of the truly scary crag climbing up and coming down.

We still followed the wall.

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Sometimes there was no need for a wall.

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And we always saw the beautiful English countryside!

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