2/16/15

France & Austria - and me not being able to keep up with posts...

Okay, I admit I have been thoroughly engrossed in being busy, taking advantage of my environs and not keeping up on the postings of Europe 2015.

I took the group to Strasbourg, France (or Straßburg) for a weekend. The Rhineland region, Alsace, the point where the German culture begins so to speak. The ICE (Inter Country Express) train flies out of Stuttgart to Strasbourg averaging about 250 kph (Kilometers per hour) which is 155 mph and certainly beats driving. 75 minutes later and presto, you are in France.

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We took a boat tour around the city which gives you an idea of what you want to go see by foot. I forced them to walk 20 minutes (with much complaining) from the Notre Dame Cathedral to a section of town called Little France - or rather - Petite-France for dinner. I am bound and determined to toughen this group up and get them walking 60 - 90 minutes a day without flinching. Look at the rewards of the view for walking what really was only about 15 minutes...



This was the old section of town that housed the slaughterhouses, but is very pretty and has some lesser expensive Alsace cuisine. The restaurants by our hotel were way out of our price category.

The restaurant we found was mid-tier, and had fine food for the price. Mine speaks for itself in terms of the kitchen staff having an actual sense of humor....

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Too funny!

The sauerkraut is soaked in salt water for a long time making it taste like no other sauerkraut on this earth. Throw in all the pig and potatoes with it - and it was quite a tasty meal. Another speciality is the Baeckeoeff which is Alsacian Stew.

Yum! I had this on the second day of our visit...

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We climbed the bell towers of the Notre Dame and took some shots...

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Sunset...

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Inside the cathedral, an interesting astronomical clock...

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Of course, another somber reminder of those who gave their lives was on display in the cathedral...

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Gutenbergplatz at night in Strasbourg...

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I went to two museums on Saturday including the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art...

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The building is not too exciting on the outside from the back or the front, but Wow! - what fabulous collections were on display - both permanent and shorter duration. Well worth the 2 hours I spent viewing the fine art.

There is plenty to see and do in Strasbourg, but everyone was tuckered out by the time we boarded our 5:37 train to go back to Schorndorf.

A fun week at school, and then I was off to Vienna on Friday afternoon to see Alexa and spend the weekend with her.

We took the bus up to the Kahlenberg on Saturday to overlook Vienna, drink some Apfelsaftschorle when I caught these 2 mountain bikers who were taking a break before descending through the woods back to Vienna...

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In preparation for our visit in April, I went to the two Jewish Museums and lined up a guest speaker/guide for us to cover all matters related to one of our classes. Even though I've been there many times and seen the memorial, it still is always poignant to see the Judenplatz memorial...

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Alexa am Graben after our typical Sunday Viennese breakfast at the Cafe Museum...

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I have more pictures, but have not yet downloaded them from my phone.

Suffice it to say - France one weekend, Austria the next has kept me busy. Train travel, great food, great museums and of course spending a weekend with my daughter was well worth the train ride.

Nürnberg is on tap for this weekend with the group.


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