"And then we Ausfahrt?"
Trip Start Jul 17, 2010
21Trip End Aug 07, 2010
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The taxi ride took about twenty minutes. When we arrived at the rental car place, Greg went in to get the car and sign some papers. The man behind the counter was one of the grossest human beings I have ever seen (picture the grossest plumber you have ever seen, and put him behind a desk). After providing the man with some information, he handed us the keys to a dark silver Mercedes.
We had some trouble getting out the parking lot initially. First, the seatbelt light/alarm kept going off because our backpacks were sitting in the back seat
From Greg: Today, we rented a car for das Autobahn. Apaprently, European cars have a very handy feature: the “Everything Is O.K.” alarm. So long as that alarm is going off, everything is ok and you are ready to drive! With our “Everything’s O.K.” alarm happily chirping, we headed for Schloss Neuschwanstein.
From Cari: We didn’t have much more luck once we drove off the lot. We had no idea where we were going because the driving directions provided for us were from an address in Munich, not from the one we were at and the road maps we had were not helpful for city driving
From Greg: The drive was uneventful, except for learning that Germans are just as bad at driving as Americans (although I will admit that the country side was quite nice). About an hour and a half later, we arrived at Neuschwanstein. To go ahead and lobby my complaint, if you want to go into the castle, buy your tickets ahead of time and don’t listen to your travel agent who says, “(in a high pitched voice) You don’t need tickets! You’ll be able to walk right in.” It’s a lie; you can’t walk right in. So, instead of waiting in the two hour long line that would allow us to go in an additional three hours later (total wait time: five hours), we decided we would hike up the hill and explore the grounds. This was a popular alternative that many tourists were doing.
From Cari: I had wanted to go into the castle and had found a lot of information before we left that told us we needed tickets. It was my mistake for trusting the professional travel agent who told Greg that we didn’t
From Greg: The castle was neat; the bridge above it was neater. There’s a nice video about Cari having a conniption on the bridge, but she refuses to post it, so you will just have to take my word for it that it was fun for everything
From Cari: The fried cream cheese balls were delicious (and, for the record, they were Greg’s idea)!
From Greg: The trip from Fussen to Bamberg was my first real exposure to real Autobahn driving. One particularly interesting moment: I was driving in the middle lane going 100 MPH when a series of sports cars flew past me on the left going at least 130 MPH. Autobahn driving is not for the faint of heart, but I highly recommend it to anyone who loves driving. Maintaining a good driving flow takes a much higher level of strategy than driving in the States. One must keep track of the cars coming up behind you much more alertly than you are probably used to. The cars are going far faster than you expect.
From Cari: I did a better job navigating this time. I directed us straight to the hotel. Yay, me!
From Greg: Four hours later, we arrived in Bamberg.
From Cari: Once checked in, we were going to eat at the hotel restaurant to make it easy on ourselves, but I wasn’t really in the mood for “duck tongue” or “crawfish tails” or “eel basted in basil” so we asked the concierge where were should go (keeping in mind that we were not in the mood for Bavarian, as we had been having it a lot recently)
From Greg: One note of interest from our arrival night in Bamberg was the pork shoulder. Pork shoulder is a really common dish in Bavaria. It is always served with the weird mashed potato balls. This one was particularly good (very tender meat), but it was the sourkrat that really made it. Mmmm, pork shoulder meat, sourkrat, and weird mashed potatoes. That and a dark beer (from Kaiserdom Brewery in Bamberg) made for a enjoyable evening out on the town.