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  • Day540

    Day 541: Pilgrimage Church of Wies

    August 9, 2018 in Austria ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

    Back in the car, and back over the border into Austria. Amazingly, the price of fuel dropped from around 1.75/L in Italy to about 1.29/L in Austria, so we made sure to fill up. We were heading for Germany where prices are about halfway between the two.

    Dodged around Innsbruck and crossed into Deutschland where we were briefly stopped and questioned by the Polizei, probably on account of our Czech number plates. I assume they were looking for people smugglers, but the cop decided we looked harmless enough and sent us on our way.

    Our way was towards Wies, a tiny little spot in the middle of nowhere. Here there was a pilgrimage church, built to house a miraculous statue of Jesus that was found to be weeping. It's one of those spots where it's literally a hundred miles from anywhere, and yet somehow attracts over a million visitors a year.

    The church is a masterpiece of Rococo and baroque design, and was actually very impressive inside despite the unassuming mayonnaise coloured exterior. We alternated interior visits as the temperature was way too high for a dog in the car, got our filming done and then loaded up on currywurst.

    Onwards we forged towards Regensburg, our home for the next couple of nights. Had our first experience with the autobahn, which actually comes largely with a "recommended" speed limit of 130kph. Going over that won't result in tickets, but if you have an accident caused by excessive speeds then you have hugely increased liability in both civil and criminal cases. Apparently speed limits were first introduced by the Nazis in the 1930s, so in the 50s they were removed since people saw them as a Nazi-era relic. Even today there's no real push to introduce limits. And I find it interesting that other rules are more heavily enforced, such as no tailgating, no undertaking, keeping right unless overtaking etc. People are pretty good about those.

    Arrived in Regensburg in the late afternoon where we relaxed. Staying in someone's apartment while they're away which is always a bit hit and miss - this one was more of a miss since the dude was very messy and there were a load of fruit flies buzzing around too. At least we had decent internet after a few days in the hills with poor connections!
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