Home of Herr Benz

Trip Start Oct 18, 2012
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Flag of Germany  , Baden-Württemberg,
Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Howdy folks,

Yesterday Steffie was keen to do some sight seeing so after breakfast we drove out of Edingen to take a look at Ladenburg which lies across the Neckar River. We took the car ferry over the small river which only cost €1.60, but halfway across I tried to take a picture and realised I had forgotten my memory card! What is a tourist to do, but drive back and get it! After a 30 minute delay, we stopped at the village green to go down and take a look at the river. It is autumn here and the leaves are falling making it great to take pictures! The town has a very long history dating back 2000 years to Roman times and beyond. As an Australian this is somewhat hard to comprehend as European Settlement in Australia dates back less than 250 years although not much is taught about Aboriginal culture and history in schools. This makes Edingen look like a youngster at a mere 1250 years old! But more on that later.

Our first stop was the witch tower which is the only surviving watch tower along the 800 year old city wall which forms the boundary of the old town. We walked along the wall into downtown where the Carl Benz house is. At this very house, the inventor of the modern car lived for many years until his death in 1929. Apparently his wife Bertha Benz is almost as famous as her husband as she made the first long distance drive in an automobile to visit her mother. Her husband only found out when she sent him a telegram that she had arrived! The journey she took is now called the Bertha Benz route and was pretty long at 106kms in a single day in 1888. Because there were no petrol stations, she had to stop at apothecary shops to buy alcohol for fuel and even solved a few mechanical problems along the way! The next day she drove back home with her 2 sons and it created a lot of publicity.

We walked into the old town and there was a point near a museum where you could see 3 different walls built in various periods. The old and narrow cobblestone streets definitely gave the town some character although we ate at a Turkish kebab shop for lunch; definitely not 2000 years old. We exited out through the main gate and walked back to the car.

After driving back to Edingen, we decided to take a walk down by the Neckar River. It was interesting to see the different high water marks that were documented on a wall with some being way over my head. We walked past the fishing club and back to the stone table which is apparently the meeting point in town. There was a body found in the park near Steffie's house a few years ago which was apparently a mistress who was killed by her lover and his family after he told his wife about the affair. Very juicy gossip!

We spent the rest of the afternoon taking a look at the shops and were unable to buy a frisbee, but not for lack of trying! Undeterred, we even tried Heidelberg, but even Toys R Us didn't have one. Unbelieveable! We did find a 2L bottle of Czech beer for only €2 though! It was a low key dinner after we returned home of kassler mit kartoffelbrei und sauerbohnen. It still tasted pretty good.

This morning wasn't very interesting. After breakfast, I sat down to work on my German until lunchtime. Steffie meanwhile was visiting her old work to get a reference and catching up on gossip in the meanwhile. She came home for lunch and we spent the afternoon at her brother's apartment helping him renovate.

In the evening after dinner, I taught the Germans how to carve a Halloween pumpkin. It was hilarious to see an Australian teaching Germans an American tradition! Nevertheless we got there in the end and with good results. We tried to scare the cat with it, but she was more fascinated than scared!
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