Boat Trip 2July 24 in Slovakia
A few more photos from the boat, it was a lovely afternoon!
A few more photos from the boat, it was a lovely afternoon!
A lovely couple of hours pottering around Devin Castle which is on the junction of the Morava and Danube rivers, with Austria just across the way, a really beautiful spot!
Let’s go to Bratislava Suzie says. Ok sounds good, off we head, not knowing anything about it or what to expect. I know it’s in Slovakia, a different country, so passports are gathered and of we go.
Just getting to the train station was an experience, no bikes were available so we decide to walk. Time was getting short, so jump onto the U then a change to another. Little stressed, I was getting worried we would miss the train, they run every hour. We finally arrive at the central station. Up 2 levels to get to the international train station with 9 mins to go - Still stressed I grab the tickets. We Make it to the train with a few minutes to spare.
The trip to Bratislava is 1 hour, we travel through the Austrian countryside heading east towards Slovakia. The landscape is predominately farming and wind farms.
On arrival at the train station I expected to go through immigration but no, nothing. No stamps today -first time I have cross a country border and not due immigration.
Bratislava is know for the old town area, we pass the Presidential Palace on the way to the old area. This was originally the summer palace, which was built in the 18th century. Today it is the home of the president.
The Old Town Hall was built in the 15th. century, We certainly were going back in time. The buildings are not in top condition but this adds to the charm. This is certainly a very touristy spot, the place is filled with restaurants and souvenir shops but still quiet charming.
Wandering up and down small alley ways we make our way through the old city. We have lunch at an authentic Slovakian restaurant. I have cabbage soup which is delicious 2nd course of gnocchi with bacon. Hmm what can I say, the gnocchi is white and the bacon is the bacon fat that has been fried. Not for me, not very nice at all. The 3rd course was apple strudel, it was delicious. Not the best meal I have had But at least we all tried local food.
Continue on through the narrow laneways and lots of stairs until we come to the castle. We are certainly getting our exercise today. The Bratislava Castle was the coronation seat of the Hungarian empire in the 16th. century. It’s in very good condition and well worth a visit. The view from here overlooks the Danube, the city centre and wind warms for as far as the eye can see. There’s a spot crossing back to the old city where you view the old stone walled city and the new fancy bridges over the Danube. Quite a good comparison of old vs new.
Time to return to Vienna as the first Boylesque festival is tonight. A full brief of this event will be done after tomorrow nights show.Read more
Last day with the car! Not so much driving to do today, but we had to get the car back by 12pm so not much time for stuffing around. Packed up and checked out by 9am, only to get outside and discover our car had been wheel-clamped!
There was a notice (in Slovak) on the windscreen saying something like the car was illegally parked and that we needed to phone the police for the clamp to be removed. So I called up, and managed to at least explained "car .. wheel clamp .. Hotel Rozalia" which brought an "OK .. colleague .. 10 minutes".
10 minutes later the cops turned up, and the one who spoke a little English explained that the centre of town was only parking for residents - visitors had to park in parking lots on the outskirts of town, 20 minutes walk away. I was very apologetic and polite, though I made the point that there was no sign on the street where I'd parked, and that I wouldn't have parked if there was a sign. They removed the clamp and fined us 10 euros per day, which probably worked out cheaper than parking in the proper place!!
Oh well, at least we only lost 20 minutes. On the road where we made directly for Bratislava. Slow going at first as we were on very back roads, but gradually the roads got more and more main until we eventually joined the freeway. Filled up and then dropped the car off at the airport with no problems.
Caught a bus from the airport to our apartment which turned out to be a big mistake - the bus to the airport a month ago had been fine, but this time a large flight had just come in, so a huge crowd piled onto the bus when it showed up (it's only 3x per hour). It was jam-packed on leaving the airport, and then every stop more and more people kept forcing their way on. Standing there with all our bags and a restless Schnitzel wasn't much fun at all.
Lost my temper a bit at some other people who wouldn't move for a lady trying to get off with a pram - everyone just kind of stood there dumbly while this lady struggled and couldn't push through. Eventually I just yelled and barged a path for her with my giant backpack.
Off the bus and walked the last 15 minutes to our apartment - we weren't quite sure which stop was ours and probably got off one too early, alas. We couldn't check in just yet, but the cleaning lady let us in for a bag drop which was nice. She said she only needed an hour, so we headed to a nice Italian cafe downstairs and had a two-course lunch of beetroot soup followed by lasagne for just 6 euros each. This sort of lunch is quite popular - it's all pre-made stuff, but it's designed for people to eat quickly and go back to work. Bearing in mind as well that lunch is usually the main daily meal.
Eventually an hour had passed and we could head upstairs, so upstairs we headed. Quite a nice apartment, spacious and modern with some nice touches. Good wifi too! Settled in for the evening, did a bit of work but not much. Supermarket directly underneath us so we had some bread and cheese from there for dinner.Read more
Got started on my enormous backlog of videos - I've got something ridiculous like 25 in need of editing and uploading. Baked goods from the supermarket for lunch; in the evening we went to the shopping mall for dinner. Dogs are allowed inside so we took him along and went up to the food court. Shandos had a stir fry while I had a quesadilla.
More videos today, along with general organising, tidying up files and some social media work as well. Too much to do, too little time. Spoke as well on Skype to dad and the Cleavers. Subway at the mall for lunch, tortellini for dinner. Also spent a few hours watching the day's football matches (City vs Arsenal, United vs Chelsea).
Hardcore day of videos today - smashed through nine of them which is a new record for me. Backlog down to nine which is nice - still a long way to go but I've got videos queued up on YouTube almost until Christmas! Another Subway run for lunch, then dinner out at the Italian place downstairs.
Also had some excitement where as I was coming back from the mall with Subway, Shandos had taken Schnitzel out for a pee. And forgotten the key inside! We were locked out. I called our host, who'd told us he was working in Vienna all week, but somehow he was able to answer the apartment buzzer remotely from his office, and then unlatch the apartment door from there as well. Very convenient, but also a little unsettling!Read more
Spoke to mum on Skype in the morning for a couple of hours, then spent some time organising and updating my videos. Even after editing and uploading, it still takes time to add in all the correct metadata on YouTube, add the end screens and so on. Plus I have to carefully manage my hard drive space - I don't have a huge amount to play with either on my phone, my computer or my external SD cards, so I did a few things related to that.
Lunch downstairs at the Italian place (cauliflower soup, crepe suzette with ricotta), and a long chat about where we are in our journey, where we're heading and so on. Back upstairs eventually where I did a few research things for upcoming places, picked out a couple of Airbnbs for Germany etc. Decided since I'd worked so hard on videos the last couple of days I'd take a break today. Just a simple dinner of bread and cheese from the supermarket for our last night in Slovakia.Read more
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