The DisFort's Chit Chat Cafe

…..I may have gotten up to early and be a bit tired this Sat AM….
We arrived at the hotel where the tour starts tomorrow morning. Unfortunately Donna's suitcase didn't make it. No time today to shop, plus we are worn out. (Been up since yesterday morning). Tomorrow we are off to Venice. Not sure if there is time to shop or not. Rialto bridge is on the agenda, there are shops all around that.

We are sitting at the pool bar getting something to eat. Ham and cheese paninis, 2 drinks and chips. Only 20 Euros. Probably the cheapest meal we will have the whole trip. And it was really good.


A little update before bed.

Donna rested while Ian and I walked the 1/2 mile to the ATM to get some Euros. Exchange rate using my ATM card was Google rates. After we got back, I talked to the girl in the lobby who suggested a nice shopping mall for more clothes. A taxi ride there and Donna has a new suitcase and enough clothes for a few days. We had to ask a local guy sitting on the sidewalk to translate to get us a taxi back to the hotel, but we are here.

Nodding off as I type. It is 0940 local time and except for 2 45 minute naps on the plane, I've been up for 33 hours.

Tomorrow is Venice. Looking forward to that.

Good night.
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Didn’t know Rome, NY had such a grand airport 😜😁

Maybe Jim and family flew into Rome, GA from Toronto. :confused3


Didn’t know Rome, NY had such a grand airport 😜😁
Yes If was formerly known as Griffiss AFB. It was my last duty station from Jan 1979 till my discharge on 5 September 1979.
During that time it was a SAC base and home to B 52s and KC 135s . It was also the 1st Wing to have Cruise Missiles fitted to the 52's
Maybe Jim and family flew into Rome, GA from Toronto. :confused3

That would be an "international" vacation, I guess. The bus is nice. Same size as my coach. I showed Alasandro, our driver, I picture and he asked if I wanted to split the driving. Italian laws require a 45 minute break every 4.5 driving hours.
The roads are nicer, but I can't read the road signs. 😕



Wrapped up the day with a motorboat ride back to the main transport center to catch a bus back to the hotel. 20,000 steps in today. Donna didn't like that.


Tomorrow is off to Munich with a stop in Innsbruck. Dinner is at a "traditional" German beer house. I ordered saurbratten. I'll let you know how it is.

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Yesterday we overnighted in Munich and went to a traditional beer hall for dinner. Surprisingly the beer was cold. Food was ok. We drove through Austria with a stop in Innsbruck. The Alps are gorgeous, but as soon as you are in them, you are back out on the German side.


Today we are headed to the Rhine River Valley. We will have lunch on a river boat cruise and finish this evening with another German beer hall. The beer was good last night, but I really like German wines and this region is known for its ice wine.

Fun day. Headed up the Rhine River Valley.

Lots of cool little river towns. Tourism is clearly their life blood, but some amazing history.20230606_133145.jpg20230606_133846.jpg20230606_135134.jpg

Stopped in St Goar to do some wine tasting (not as good as I hoped) and take a cruise down the Rhine (very nice)


Finished the day walking to another beer hall in Koblenz, but on the walk, our guide pointed out gold squares in the sidewalk. This area had a terrible history during WW2. The gold squares contain the name, birthday and day of death of someone killed nearby during the holocaust.


Lots of things throughout Germany to remind people of their terrible history. They don't want future generations to forget. Sad the US keeps trying to hide their not so pleasant past.

On to Amsterdam tomorrow. Stops at a cheese factory, see wooden shoes being made, a view of the wind mills and a dinner boat on the canals to finish the day.

Not exciting as Jims post. I got passanger side wheel bearings repacked after work last night with new seals. Brakes are feel adjusted enough though I do plan to add more grease and check them before we had to FL. Tonight I plan on doing the drivers side.

After that just make my reprovisioning list for the race weekend ahead. Got a race to work this weekend and then the 23rd through 25th. Between now and July 4th I do plan on giving the RV a roof down bath, then the coat of wax I always dread doing but worth protecting this investment. Last year wasn't too hateful, just takes time.

Kids are alread ready for next Thursday to start their summer...I feel like I have so much left to do!

That sounds like a lot of work. You need a vacation! :)

We got to the hotel late last night. Spent the day driving through the Netherlands. Stopped at a cheese farm and saw wooden shoes being made and sampled some good gouda


Went by one of the old windmills that controlled water in the canals. This one is a residence now.


After this it was on to Amsterdam. The downtown area is very historic and beautiful. We had about 2 hours to explore. The red light district is right alongside the tourist shops, and high end boutiques. Interesting mix. The smell of weed is everywhere, but everyone just seemed to be getting along.
After our walkabout, we had a boat cruise along the canals. Amazing architecture. Interesting fact that most of the buildings along the canals are businesses now as they are too expensive for most people.




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@Teamubr - Soon my friend soon!

Got the last of the wheel bearings repacked. My annual maintnence saved me some, one of the DS seals was starting to seep grease. Nothing flung about, and the bearing chamber was not overfilled with grease. I think the 3 year old seal was just done. Once again making it a good thing I did this. I will add some grease like I usualy do before the trip south. And glad I have two shorter trips before that.

The smoke haze and air quality is plummeting here. Seeing pictures and videos from friends in LI and PA showing just how bad the worst of it is. Even going outside to take out the trash you could feel it in your chest. Pretty sure if I have to go outside anytime today I might just use a mask.

We drove from Amsterdam to Paris today with a 2 hour stop in Ghent. It is a very historic town with amazing architecture.


Drive across Northern France reminded me of Central Illinois. Farm land with tree lines and wind mills. We could easily have been on I-57 or I-64.

We arrived in Paris mid afternoon and drove by the typical tourist things. We had about 15 minutes at the park across the Seine from The Eiffel Tower to get some pics. Then off to the next landmark.


Dinner tonight was at a nice French restaurant. I'm not fond of French food, but it was ok.

Tomorrow, we get a full day in Paris. We will spend more time at some of the landmarks, get some macaroons, go to a perfumery and finish with a late lunch on a river boat cruise on the Seine.

Free day in Paris yesterday. We took a day long tour that took us to Montparnasse Tower. This is a 56 story office building built on the periphery of the city in the 1970s. It stuck out so bad compared to the centuries old buildings, they banned any more that close to city center. There is an observation platform on the top floor with incredible sights of the city.


We took a lunch riverboat cruise down the Seine and got a little closer view of Notre Dame. It is very sad to see the extent of the damage from the fire in 2019. They are rebuilding, but it is going to take awhile. The last picture above is from the tower. These are from the riverboat.


For those that don't remember, this is Notre Dame before the fire. Parts are over 1000 years old.


I can't get over all the amazing architecture here. This is one of the reasons I wanted to go to Europe and Paris doesn't disappoint 20230609_152151.jpg20230609_142110.jpg


Moving to the next.
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