Paige and I took the circus across the pond last week. Germany is a super special place to me. My fondest childhood memories come from the time our family spent there. I can still remember piling up in the Barlaan's green VW bus on weekend excursions exploring the country together. I can still remember the Jägers sitting around Wolfgang's table telling hunting stories late into the night over many Bitburger's. I can still remember getting off the school bus and being greeted by the Fahler kids from across the street anxious to play with their new American friends. I guess that's why I keep going back. Going back with Paige made this trip extra special.
Germany is Beethoven, Bach, Brahms and Strauss. It's Einstein, Heidegger, Luther and Nietzsche. It's Jan, Jens, André and Tony. The list goes on.
We spent the first half of our vacation on the dreamy Mosel river nestled in the Hunsrück mountains between Trier and Koblenz. Frozen in time is what comes to mind. Castles round every corner and beautiful villages dotting the way as the Mosel meanders lazily along towards the Rhine.
This is what a free upgrade from Avis looks like in Germany. Nice.
Let's Eat! First meal. Fresh local chanterelles and bruschetta. Bitte ein Bit!
The view from the B&B. Altus Zollhaus.
Beilstein is a small village with charm overflowing.
This is how you get over jet lag. It requires a wife who won't let you sleep.
We took a feather from Rick Steve's cap and walked around a bit.
This is typical Hunsrück weather.
They take the potato seriously in Germany. This dish was a huge hit with us. Eggs over taters with raw ham.
And then...there's breakfast. Let's Eat! We love B&B's for this reason. That was the first of 3 plates for me!
Our trusty steeds. 16 Euros gets ya two sweet commuter rigs for the day.
250 km of dedicated bike path along the river.
Somebody pinch me.
7 hour excursion. Destination Burg Eltz. Germany + bicycles + PCG = Joy
The path is pancake flat unless you turn right or left.
Up up up up up!
PCG did great on the climb. It was legit.
A short hike and we arrived at Burg Eltz. Rick Steve's says it's his favorite castle in all of Europe.
CAAD10 where are you when I need you?
I didn't plan the lunch part very well. Folks were gettin HANGRY after 5 hours. Nothing like street food in Germany. Brat mit Pommes Frites. Bitte ein Bit!
Shut Up Legs!
Let's Eat! Tons of trout on the menu. Fresh from the river.
It was okay.
The next day we hiked in the vineyards. This region is famous for it's Riesling.
The Calmont Klettersteig is no joke. I kind of chuckled when the signs said this was a rigorous hike.
Who's laughing now.
Pure adventure on tap.
With stupid cool scenery.
Grapes growing on 68% grade. That is some difficult terrain to farm.
This is what a Clif Bar photo bomb looks like.
PCG is about to part the
Red Sea Mosel.
Looking back at where we came from.
The sign on the door of this restaurant said 'Wiener Art'. Enough said. It actually means in the Viennese style. German potato salad is the bomb. Bitte ein Bit!
If you notice there was a lot of beer consumed. Well...we are in Germany! But really Germans don't drink tap water and charge you for it if you want it. Bottled water is virtually the same price as bier. So, this equation is very simple. Bitte ein Bit! Also notice 'Bitburger Drive' on the menu.
Schnitzel glory. Bitte ein bit!
The harvest is coming soon. The wine festivals will be all along the river.
The room was super.
We might have been the youngest folks in the Mosel valley. Old Germans everywhere. I'm an old man at heart so I fit right in.
Beilstein from across the Mosel.
Not a single bad fries in Germany and we ate our fair share. Bitte ein Bit!
The charming courtyard of Beilstein. It's packed with folks in the afternoon.
The spread every morning. Breakfast is the new dinner.
Headed south. Stay tuned for part 2.