Sunday 28th – Wednesday 31st October
Our campsite for 4 nights: am Alten Bahnhof, Pronsfeld – GPS N50.163010. E6.336810
Wow – is it getting cold now. Martina and Ralf from Stelzenberg Germany warned us that come 1st November when the Autumn rains begin, the trees lose their remaining leaves and you say goodbye to summer, the sun and any hope of any warmth until March the following year.
The cold came four days early for us this year as we experienced cold, rain, sleet and snow in the 4 days at Pronsfeld. The temperature during the day did not climb above 7 and the minimum on one day, even in the middle of the days was -2 degrees. We sat in Ziggy for most of the 4 days and enjoyed the warmth of the gas heating and the wonderful strong internet speeds here.
Great little Stellplatz with everything you need and only a few minutes walk to the village. The camping fuhrer comes morning and night to collect the camping fee. Lots of lovely trees (now in full Autumn shades) border the camping area.
Met a great Belgish couple who gave us some tips on places to visit in Belgium. They said there are not many camping places and Belgium is overcrowded, hence they holiday in Germany. Advice from them was not to allow too much time in Belgium before going home.
Think without the internet we would have gone stir crazy as we spent many hours enjoying our movies and U Tube, sport and world news while the snow came tumbling down outside. So pretty to watch through our picture windows but certainly kept us indoors most of the time.
Took the opportunity on the last day to do a walk through the village but not without coats, gloves, scarves and many layers. The old railway cars at the railway station were quite interesting, but there is little else apart from cycling (not today for this little navigator though) and Nordic walking with lots of walking tracks to choose from. Only lasted about an hour and a bit before the sleet came in and we retired back to our warm little cocoon.
Thursday 1st November
Our campsite for tonight: Grenzlandhalle, Hellenthal – GPS N50.492409. E6.380760
Travelled through more rain again today and struggled to keep the Windows from fogging up. Has taken us a while to learn how to do this successfully but now it’s a breeze using the air conditioning in conjunction with the demister – no problem at all.
We are only travelling short distances in this weather and really appreciated getting to this great little camp spot only a short distance away.
We are just on the outskirts of a very pretty little town with lots of great restaurants. This Stellplatz is gratis and does not have any services but is a very quiet and restful spot. Drizzled for most of our stay here so after a short time exploring this neat little town, we retired to back to Ziggy.
Friday 2nd November
Hard to believe we are coming home at the end of this month after more than 21 months away. We are getting really very sad now and often there are several quiet moments when we are travelling where both of us are feeling the pain and knowing our holiday is coming to an end.
We have booked the Chunnel crossing between Calais and Folkestone back to the UK on 17th November to enable time to service, detail and register Ziggy and have a habitation check done and neither of us are looking forward to leaving Europe.
Ziggy has been just wonderful and while we have two interested parties waiting to inspect her, I for one will not be disappointed if they do not fall in love with her. If no sale eventuates, we will put her in to secure storage in the UK and return again for a while next year – now the thought of that makes us happy!
Our campsite for tonight: Reisemobilhafen, Rurberg – GPS – N50.605770. E6.380760
Rain has stopped for the moment but it is still really cold. We watch as the locals walk by in their heavy coats, layers, hats and gloves and wonder how they can stand this type of weather for so many months of the year.
So many places are now beginning to close for the seasonand we really appreciate that back home, nothing closes ever for any part ofthe year.
This is a great campsite right on the edge of the village with only a short little walk to the massive lake which now only has a few boats moored, whereas a couple of months ago, sailing and small cruise boats happily cruised back and forth. What a difference a few weeks make.
There is a really great information centre and a pretty village with lovely homes scattered up the hillsides around the lake. Lots of hotels and restaurants on the waterfront but only a few remain open.
Quite happy to be able to take a really long walk today as the weather has improved (still no sign of sunshine – has been nearly a week now without seeing the sun). The walks (and bike ways if you are brave enough) took us across the dam wall and around the lake which is stunning.
Temperature overnight was -3 and woke up to thick frost on the grass. Even have a patch of sunshine this morning so hope it remains for a while.
My driver hasn’t had the opportunity of taking many photos over the last week or so – the weather has been so awful and the navigator has not had much to write home about for the same reason.
We have decided to head for Calais through Belgium so we don’t have to pass through France but will eventually have to cross in to France to get to the Chunnel crossing.
We are very sad about leaving Germany as we have had such a good time here – the country, people, food, beer and everything else have been really great.
It also makes such a difference when we have been able to understand what the locals are saying and they can understand us as well.
Important that you have plenty of cash at all times (same in many European countries) as credit cards are not accepted in many businesses with the exception of supermarkets and service stations.
Be aware of the “pay to pee” concept in Germany – when you can find a public toilet (offentliche toilette) there is a fee to pay on exiting the toilet.
We were surprised that this system was also in places like McDonalds and in some restaurants and bars.
The Driver was caught out a couple of times as he usually wanders around without any money at all as I am the one who carries the money, passports etc.
The other unusual concept for us was the deposit or “pfand” system whereby a deposit is paid on all drink type purchases both at supermarkets and in some restaurants and bars.
The supermarkets have automatic machines where you can deposit your empty bottles and receive a docket which can be offset against future purchases in the store.
Sometimes the deposit is more then the value of the drink ie 19 Euro cents for a bottle of water and 25 Euro cents for the deposit.
The most confusing situation we experienced was at a restaurant/bar at the Deutsches Ecke at the junction of the Moselle and Rhein rivers in Koblenz – we went to the bar to order 2 beers and were told we had to go to another section to pay a deposit for the glasses – 2 Euros each glass.
We did that and then returned to the bar and ordered the 2 beers which were then placed on the counter top – We went to pay but was told we had to go to another section to pay.
We consumed the beers and then went back to the bar to have the glasses deposit refunded but was told we had to go to another section to have the deposit refunded.
Just as well we could understand the signage (and there was sign pollution) or we could have been there for ever.
In many places staff are not allowed to handle cash – only the owner or manager handles the cash.