Tales from the River – Rudesheim, Germany, Oct 02, 2011

What a glorious morning!  I awoke about 7 am and couldn’t wait to see the Rhine valley and all of the castles along the river.  Like a child, I couldn’t wait for Ed to be dressed and ready for breakfast.  There was fog everywhere so it was difficult to see the banks of the river so it was a perfect time to spend concentrating on food rather than the view.

About 9 am, some people gathered in the bar and other sat on the top deck to view all of the wonders on both sides of the ship.  Ed and I took many pictures, which I will post separately.  We spent the morning in the lounge and watched the vineyards and towns pass by.  It was amazing to see homes, churches, and castles perilously perched on the side of a steep hill, overlooking the river.  They must have a great view!

Several things I have noticed on this cruise.  One is that all along the river, there is a campground whenever there is enough room between the road and the river.  Surprisingly, the road is usually very close to the river, with just a few rocky feet between the tree-line and the water.  Occasionally, we will see a single tent set up with someone lounging beside the water or fishing.  The hills seem to rise up straight from the road and wherever there is a little room, it seems a town has grown up, with beautiful old buildings along the main street that parallels the water.

One thing they told us was about the railroad line that also follows the river.  It was determined that Hitler was bombing the tracks in order to disrupt moving goods from place to place, yet he was not bombing castles.  The German government decided to make the tunnel entrances look like castles so they would not get bombed.  I guess they couldn’t disguise the train tracks themselves, but they could disguise the tunnel entrances.  As a result, none of those mini-castles were bombed during the war.

Everyone else is now at lunch.  I’m skipping it today.  I’m still full from breakfast and the reading lounge is empty so I’m posting quite a few blogs at this time.  All morning, I have tried to get connected but it just hasn’t worked out.  Problems with the connection for everyone, I’m taking advantage of this time.  Ed had gone up to the top deck for a better view of the landscape and I moved while he was gone, from the bar lounge to the reading lounge.  I heard that he is eating now so I will catch up with him later.  To be honest, it is nice sitting in peace and quiet, watching the bicyclists pass us by as we set a leisurely pace.

This afternoon, we see Rudesheim, pronounced Rudis-hime, and we will take a gondola up to the top of the hill.  More on this later but the other tour available was the self-playing musical instrument museum.  I’m sure that it would be interesting – I’ve been told that it is – but there are gondolas across the river in many places in this Rhine valley and I’m looking forward to riding one and taking many pictures.  Then we will have the afternoon free to stroll through Rudesheim, a small town but with lots of character.



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