Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Mirko and Lucia spent 5 weeks with us in Perth studying English in 2004. They did not hesitate to return some special Slovakian hospitality when we planned to visit them. Here we are enjoying a wonderful meal in the Bratislava TV tower restaurant at some 200 m height.

Here Lucia and I share a scary moment when the lift to the top of the High Tatra suddenly stopped.

Host Mirko explains to me from the main castle in Bratislava how the bridges over the Danube were built and how the boats have to manoevre due to the strong current. He used to row on the river but now concentrates on tennis and squash. Mirko works for HP.

Behind unassuming walls we find surprising nice courtyards with delicious fruits, icecreams and locally produced drinks. Here we were sitting under a cherry tree after the many hiking adventures of the morning.
Our local tourguide, driver and host, Lucia, had taken two days off work to show us many interesting sites and some real Slovakian hospitality.

Where the Morova enters the Danube they built a castle some 2000 years ago called Devin. Slovakia is full of castles and spectacular old buildings, many restored to original condition. Here we also found a memorial with the names of all local people who died trying to cross the "Iron Curtain" into Austria. And that was not even so long ago.......

Tanneke climbing the High Tatra

The Tatras are absolutely spectacular and can change from sunshine to rain or snow within minutes. We walked at some 2200 meter height with rain clouds drifting in.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Prague. Just the taste of one day walking around and taking a tour is enough to realize that you need at least one week to see the vast amount of history and old buildings. Also facinating are the political changes that have taken place over the last few years and the recent admission to the European Union. Socially and economically there are huge challenges and changes; you could say that there are at least 3 very different generations here.

Oehringen in Germany is the town that is hosting the Socceroos and the whole place is full of Australian flags and Aussies.
It is fair to say that the whole of Europe is soccer mad. Tickets are sold by scalpers for up to 20 times the printed value. People drive thousands of kilometers to see a particular game. When we drove through Oehringen the stadium was just being prepared for a returning to town ceremony of the Socceroos.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Our rough travel plan: Belgium this weekend, Prague several days and Bratislava/Vienna next, then by July 1 in Switzerland and half July with Sandy and Nikola a week to Sicily; then back to Holland. In August one week with Addy and Willem in France, then back to Holland. The first week of September in England, then back to Holland until we fly back to Perth on the 10th of October.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Our home away from home for the next 6 weeks.
Peugeot Campervan with full luxuries generously supplied by Tanneke's brother Erik! Fully serviced and checked and ready to take us to the south of Italy and many other places.

Soccer mad and orange everywhere: Eke and a friend getting ready for the game between Holland and Serbie-Montenegro. Even the dog was running around with an orange ribbon.

Monday, June 12, 2006


The plane from Perth to Hong Kong was half empty on Saturday 10.6.06; Coosje had taken us to the airport, which was very nice of her.
In Hong Kong we met Edith who stayed with us 5 years ago and who has been writing emails often to keep in touch. We found a nice restaurant and had a chance to catch up with her. Huge TV screens showed the game between England and Paragui. The next plane left at midnight and it was full to the last seat due to last minute soccer enthusiasts. We are now at Addy and Willem's house. They came to the airport at 6 am on Sunday morning and took us to their home in de Bilt. The weather was glorious, 30 degrees and sun, we cannot remember a similar day in Holland over the last 20 years. Soon my mother will arrive to take us to Apeldoorn and then the day after we will collect Tanneke's brother's campervan and the Europe trip will start for real.
I have tried to upload some pictures but it did not work yet. More later. Renne.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?