Friday, August 20, 2010

The Lost Day - Frankfurt

Morning in Bacarach still finds us overrun by the gnat! We all manage to sleep in and before we know it, it's close to 11AM.  It's Thursday morning and the camper is due back on Friday by noon. Our plan for today was to get to the Frankfurt campground, clean the camper and just take it from there.

Frederick checked the next campground and learned that reception was closed between 2 and 4PM.  If we stayed here in Bacarach and waited for everyone to take showers we'd get to the Frankfurt camp around 2:30.  That would really bite, as we weren't the most mobile group and there wasn't much to do in this part of town.  We decided for forgo our showers and get on the road straight away. We could shower when we got to Frankfurt.

It was a beautiful ride down the Rhine as we eased our way back into modern society. Yes I made the drive in my PJs, ponytail and bare face.  We crossed the river and headed to Frankfurt. Once off the freeway we dodged our way through the city streets to the campsite. It was your typical city campsite. It sort reminded  me of a abandoned drive in movie theater.  We found a spot near the showers and set up shop.

Today we had the task of cleaning the camper after 3 weeks of 5 people mulling about. It wasn't a total disaster, but we had read posts about what a stickler they were about it being spotless when you returned it. We had planned accordingly and bought cleaning supplies along the way. Slovakia makes great microfiber cloths (I brought them home ...quite the useful souvenir.)  We wiped, cleaned and swept.  Frederick and his Dad took the subway into town to pick up the rental car Frederick and I would use on the weekend. We spend the day trying to give away the food we couldn't finish.  The wine, cheese and condiments went well as did the dishwashing soap and the laundry soap.  We bought the Slovakian version of Febreeze, which came in handy as we freshened up lightly worn garments.  But..good luck giving it away in Germany!!! No one would take it...we couldn't even get our camper neighbors to understand what it was. Hum! And trust  me some of them could have used it.

We also learned more about the famous 50%+ recycling rates in Germany.  (The US is around 11%).  When it came time to empty the trash there was a wall with about 8 different holes to put your garbage. It was like a giant shape sorter for adults.  There were 3 different bins for glass alone, depending on the color. There was a whole sheet of instructions that is given to you when you check in, just telling you how to dispose of your trash and listing the fines if you fail.

Frederick and his Dad came back with the rental car...a Ford wagon, a model we hadn't seen before.  It was evident that we weren't all going to fit in the car with all our bags. We'd need another solution. We also were in need of some glue.  The latch on one of the cubbies had come unscrewed and the hole was now stripped.  We didn't want to get charged for the damage...even thought we could see that it had been repaired before.  Not taking any chances.  So this requires a trip to the store.  And guess what? We can just hop in the car and go...... wooo hooo!

By this time it was getting late and we were up against the notorious 7PM store closing time.  We stopped at the first store we Aldi.  They just put a bunch of these discount groceries in the DFW area, but I hadn't been to one.  I'm not sure I will now. It's really bare. We searched the whole store looking for a little white bottle of "Elmers" style glue. In a bin, adorned in a language we don't understand is a giant bottle of what looks like glue.  It's white with an orange twist up top.  It has to glue, except it's giant. We couldn't stop laughing.  We spent 3 weeks lamenting how small everything was in European stores. Heck, we have 7-11's with larger sizes and more variety.  Now here, the one thing tiny thing we need and it's Costco size. Hilarious! Check it out next to normal size glue!

It was only 3 Euros so we bought it.  In fact I had to bring it home.  We'll have enough glue for school projects for the remainder of Alex's High School years and perhaps for his future children as well.

We had a supper of all the leftovers we could manage and turned in for the night. Tomorrow the camping adventure ends!  I must say for the first time ever, I have been on vacation long enough and I'm ready to go home.  Imagine that?  One last night to go in the medieval walled city of Rothenburg and then home sweet home!

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