Thursday 30th March, 2017 – Leipe, Lebbenau – East Germany
Rainy and overcast this morning. Filled up with water, emptied grey water and black water and headed off. Batteries are fully topped off and fridge has worked well on power. Seems to work well on power and 12 volt but drops a lot when on gas. Think there may be a problem so will monitor over the next few days.
We are now desperate to find a McDonalds so that we can update the blog site and send news home to family and friends.
Thank you to family and all our friends who have sent us messages and well wishes over the last three weeks. Hope to be able to answer some emails when we are internet rich!! Have ordered some new equipment from Adam and Sophie at MotorhomeWifi UK which should help considerably.
Will pick this up in Poland at Easter time. Whatever did we do before internet. We rely on it so much these days and only now realise how important it is to us during our travels. Thank you to our blog followers who have given us advice on internet options available.
A crazy day today, we seemed to go round and round and not find anything we were looking for. The roads here are so narrow and with such a large machine as Ziggy, we don’t know how we manage to get past cars let alone all the trucks that travel on these very narrow roads. People are so used to this here and are very obliging (mostly) when they see us coming.
Finally after many hours and some unbelievable back roads we arrived at a Stellplatz in Leipe near Lebbenau. It is a resort of sort with a restaurant and waterway at the back which during the summer months would be full of guests rowing and paddling through the waterways. No one here right now and they are closed until 1st April. Fortunately the owner who was working on the restaurant took pity on us after we told him we were from Australia (he has a brother in Adelaide) and allowed us to stay the night.
We headed off around 5pm to a restaurant and resort about a km up the road and had a few well deserved beers and some Germany hospitality. Really beautiful resort but again not many guests staying yet. Lesson learned – never ask for an item not on a menu and on a blackboard without a price (German eye fillet with spicy red cabbage – had to have the cabbage to see if it was as good as mum used to make – was not disappointed) – cost us a pretty penny but we went home at twilight after a great evening.
Came home to a not so cold fridge and decided it was time to do something about it the next day.
Friday 31st March – Senftenberg – Germany (YES WE WERE THERE A FEW DAYS AGO).
After some research on internet, we found a place that should have been a repair and service place for our Dometic fridge in a large town nearby Cottbus. Sadly they said they don’t do work like this and directed us to a town nearby – only a half an hour away !! So we headed off again. This time we again were told that they didn’t have anyone there to help us but as were about to walk out the door, a tradesman said he knew something about these fridges and took time out to have a look at Ziggy. Appears we need a new part and he said to come back on Monday and he would be able to fit it.
We decided then and there that it was time to chill out in one of our favourite places that we have been to date Senftenberg.
Passed by a Mcdonalds in Cottbus so in we went and spent an hour updating the blogsite (and having some unhealthy Maccas at the same time). Think the next visit might be just coffee and maybe a muffin.
To our surprise when we arrived at Senftenberg the gates to the Stellplatz were open and already 8 out of the 12 spots were taken. The Stellplatz was not due to open until the next day but we were so happy we got in early and found a safe and beautiful place for the night.
Saturday and Sunday 1st and 2nd April – Senftenberg – East Germany.
A beautiful sunny day today and for the first time in our travels we were in a site where there were a dozen motorhomes surrounding us. All with German numberplates. Still to find a fellow English speaking motorhomer.
We spoke with the manager of the Stellplatz who was so impressed that we were Australian she said she would take a picture of our booking form as she had not had any Australians stay here ever. Only 11 euros a night and that includes a waterfront site with power and water We booked in for two nights and happily headed off to the bike way for a much needed ride.
We biked for hours and eventually headed into the centre of town. We are so amazed that biking is a way of life here and cars are very respectful of bikers. The markets in the town centre were still open so we spent time looking at the local wares. Lots of interesting looking sausages and meats though not sure if Rob’s Aussie stomach is ready for some of these yet.
Headed back to the waterfront and stopped in at restaurant on the waterfront for a delightful lunch – salmon is so cheap here – thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon in the sunshine and then headed back to Ziggy for some reading and relaxation before the sun set for the evening – no dinner tonight – we are still both full to pussys bow from the beautiful lunch we had.
How the weather changes so rapidly here – woke up to a vastly different day – cold and overcast so sat indoors for a wee while reading until the sun tried to pop out and off we went again. This time we almost did a complete lap of the lake, stopping regularly to take in the sights and lovely little villages along the way. Even a sailing boat out on the lake today. Appears here that people are not stopped by the weather.
Stopped in at a waterfront café and had a bratwurst roll and a cold beer. Around 300 motor bikers rode past the square with probably 50 or so stopping in the square to join us for lunch. Mostly grey hairs just like us out for a day on the motor bike. The bikers outfits were just unbelievable – very trendy.
Met up with our neighbours at the Stellplatz who were again from Dresden – lovely people again and very keen to spend time with us – didn’t speak English but we got by and think they understood most of what we were talking about (we will never know but it was fun). They told us about a great Stellplatz about 5kms out from Dresden Central. It was also a Hymer dealer and repair place called SchafferMobil. We decided to give it a go instead of going back to Cottbus.
Monday 1st April, 2017 – Dresden, Germany
Found Schaffer-Mobil easily – like a small city with every conceivable type of motorhome in the front yard – mostly Hymers so we are very optimistic that they will be able to help us out. The back was where the motorhome park was set among rows of hedges separating each lane – very green and lush and they have wi-fi included – hurrah!!! Guess what we will be doing this afternoon? After a couple of hours of computer work it was time to stretch the legs. We found a huge shopping centre called Elbe Park around 600 meters away. It had every conceivable shop you could ask for. Dropped into some internet shops to find out more about the types of SIM cards that are available and did a little food shopping.
Came back and met with the service people who have assured us they can fix the fridge problem in the morning. We have a repair to the driver’s door (that Rob broke) that needs doing as well so will probably be here for a couple of days. The latch on the inside driver’s door gave way during week one (Rob pulled it way too hard) so we have had to wind down the electric window and open the door from the outside . No problems with the outside mechanism though. Our alarm system will not work properly until we get the door fixed so this will be a must while we are here.
Spent the evening enjoying the luxury of having some internet.
Tuesday 2nd April 2017 – Dresden Germany
Bought a family transport pass for 9 Euros which allows both of us to travel by bus or train anywhere in Dresden for 24 hours. Good value as the nearest stop is just down the road from where we are staying
We went to the historic part of the city – many of the building here were built in the 1500s and are just beautiful – they have either done a great restoration job and or were lucky because there were some massive bombing raids carried out by the RAF and the USAF in February 1945 – 1245 bombers attacked the city for 3 days and nights.
Our first real sign of Tourists – saw a couple of tour groups of Asians and Americans – they stood out so guess we do too.
We went to a McDonalds to get some Internet and I couldn’t believe it – there was a sign saying that it cost .50 Euro to go to the toilet – never seen a charge anywhere else to go to a McDonalds – that was just the first part as to get to the toilet you had to feed the money in to a machine and then hope that the turnstyles would open to let you through – then you needed to go through the turnstyles again to get out – knew there was a reason why I have never liked McDonalds.
Some of the Dresden sights were amazing – many great sights are grouped together in the historic part of town – the whole area is illuminated at night
In the afternoon we caught a tram to the Military Museum – a Museum spread over 4 floors with exhibits of the German army from 1300 to the current day
The main emphasis is on the two world wars and we thought there may not be any information about Hitler and the Jewish situation but to their credit there was – but not a whole lot