It is now time to say farewell to our friends Udo and Dagmar, but only for 3 months as they will be visiting us on their holiday to Australia in Feb/Mar 2012. As our holidays are coming to an end and I had a few bits to sort out at the Honda dealer in Remscheid.
|Bush walking Gernam style!!|
|Seat with the view.|
|Visit to a histroic housing museum.|
|Historic 1600's house.|
We cruised down the hill and on to an Autobahn towards Koln, an easy 60kms or so. Our next stop was with Gerd and Elke whom we had met through Werner and Claudia in Australia in early 2010. They were on a twelve month tour in that Great Southern Land (Australia). We were again treated as honored guests, which was just fantastic. Elke took us for a tour of Koln, which included an ancient Roman archeological dig of the Roman Garrisons Principal Building, also a detailed inspection of the sewer this building used!! I could not help but visualise the Monty Python’s movie ‘The life of Brian’ where the groups of resistance fighters are coming out of the sewers and drains to attack the Romans!
|Roman ruins under the Koln city.|
|Christmas market setup is well under way.|
All too soon it was time to head to our final destination, back to Werner’s parent’s home in Remscheid. We took only small ‘B’ roads for this last day of our 2011 tour on the road. We had more fine weather for our last day (this means no rain, but cold and foggy in spots). The 40kms ticked over all too quickly, and it was over. We had ridden just under 16,000kms (15,977kms) since we arrived. Only managed to wear out one set of tyres!! At 5.8L (average) per 100, it works out at approx. 924L of fuel consumed (rough guess of 924x1.68=1552.32Euro worth).
The XRV is IMHO (in my honored opinion) a great touring bike. Not the best two up for sure, a bit tight it’s true (what bike is, with camping and extended touring gear loaded). But were and still are happy with the choice we made. Hoping to import it back into Oz, will see how this goes…
|Replacing the bent steel cowling support.|
Anyhow I had ordered a replacement Cowl support, and fitted this over the next few days. We also did some ‘day’ rides about the area. Juergen and Petra took us to a local museum in Remscheid.
|Yes it is bent, and expensive.|
|Röntgen X-ray Museum in Remscheid-Lennep.|
|Highest railway bridge in Germany.|
But we cannot thank Renate and Wilhem enough for the way they accommodated us.
We still could only muster a few words in German, but we were definitely getting better at listening in German. They were also poor with English, but this did not matter too much in the end, as the ‘Google’ Web translator & German/English translator books were put to good use by both parties.
And after 5 days stay, it was time to say “Auf Wiedersehen” and we were getting dropped off at the train station. Helped with getting our luggage down to the platform, assisted with getting on the right train to the airport in Dusseldorf. Our last train trip without problems, and we arrived with plenty of time, and were very happy to get our 3 bags checked through for the trip home. I was hoping BA would accept my Qantas Business club bag limit, they did.
|Deb did some needle craft to give as a gift.|
|Our Germany Mum and Dad.|
|View from the the train, off the highest bridge in Germany.|
|Shake rattle and roll, in the train ...|
Originally our flights back for the reverse of our arrival (or so I thought). On closer inspection, we found we would fly Dusseldorf – London (Heathrow) – Singapore (Changi) – Melbourne (Tullamarine), overnight stop over, the Melbourne – Alice Springs. Our flights to Melbourne are now complete, with only a few thousand Kms to fly back home in the morning, and we trip will be over.
We have both very much enjoyed our extended vacation. It was great fun to be traveling two up together, like a couple of kids again. Camping and picking destinations as we liked. Almost every goal I had planned we did. Only thing I was not so happy was the prang in Spain, not a good thing, but I guess even this has a part in our memories of the trip now. We’ll be back sometime, ready for some more touring …