I should be home by the time most of you get your paper. It has been a quieter week, but no rest stop by any means. My sisters and brother-in-law Dave, headed back last Tuesday. Since then the kids and I have spent some fun Granny time. I can’t say the weather has been good. At least it seems to stop raining long enough for us to go outside and have some fun. The dog is going to miss me because we have taken some nice long walks in the field more often than usual. Heather, my daughter-in-law, doesn’t want me to miss anything so she has been trying to think of more things to do. I’m quite good with all that I have done so far. She and Scott are back at work so the weekend will be traveling time.
Saturday we went back to Trier for a Medieval Fest on the town square. When we left, it was raining hard so we took umbrellas. I can truthfully say that most of my Europe pictures are going to be less than flattering! Somewhere along the way, I bought a cheap garbage bag raincoat and it does not photograph to advantage. I did not take it with me Saturday. I prayed all the way to Trier for the rain to stop. I guess God took pity on me because shortly after we started walking around the square the rain stopped. We put our umbrellas in Scott’s backpack and wandered the town. There is so much to see in this ancient German town that it takes several trips to visit all the spots. Heather, Bryson, Kaitlynn and Dustyn had not seen the Roman bath ruins, so we headed to that part of town. I’m really proud of the fact they actually pay attention and ask questions. We took all kinds of funny pictures around the beautiful ruins. We toured the castle gardens and wandered over a street to the oldest church in Germany. Can you believe the first Bishop to serve the church served in the year 250!
I tried to get the kids to understand that we didn’t have a permanent English colony until 1607. There were no buildings, churches or castles floating around America. It’s hard to put the year 250 into perspective. The church itself is a huge multi-building structure that sees many pilgrimages each year due to the fact it houses the supposed tunic of Christ. It was given to the church by King Constantine’s mother. It is in an air-conditioned glass casket. The organ in the church was breath taking. It towered far above the floor of the church in a beautiful marble setting. Bryson and I bought a candle and prayed for our families. It’s a very sweet Catholic tradition that the Protestant church does not follow. Strangely, as we left the church there were pamphlets with Pope John Paul not the present pope. He was a very beloved pope. We had lunch outside amongst all the visitors to the fair.
Today we went to the Ropes Course. We did seven of the 10. The children are not old enough to do the last three courses. They let the three kids go up since they were with us. Part way through the climb, I decided that 40 feet above the ground was just too high to be dangling around on a rope! It really is a terrific place for a day of physical family fun. There are four levels of rope courses. You are very securely attached to a safety line and the instructors make sure you know all the safety procedures. I’m not afraid of heights, but I have to admit that first zip line trip down from the trees was a little bit scary. I didn’t get my feet down in time and ended up sliding through the dirt. It is soft, so you don’t hurt much except your pride. Dustyn twisted and ended up coming in on his knees. That was a scraping experience! We spent about four hours climbing, clinging and zipping through the trees. My hands are seriously chaffed, my muscles are going to talk to me tonight, but by golly, I made it to the end. My grandkids said I was an awesome Granny. I don’t know about awesome, but I think I must still be a child at heart. We had a super tree top experience
Scott fixed a wonderful meal of chicken Alfredo and I’m feeling a big time nap coming into my view! Russ is trying to make sure he is at the airport when I come in on Wednesday. I will be a little distressed if he forgets to pick me up! I’ve enjoyed my vacation in Europe, but I’ll be glad to get home to good old Richland Springs. Things are a little different here. The thing that strikes me first is the smokers. Everywhere you go, people are smoking. Since many people eat outdoors, you can’t escape the smoke when you are eating or walking. I like the hot water on demand that Scott has in his house, and I like his heated tiles, but we have those in the States. The food is different and I still haven’t gotten used to having to pay for mustard and ketchup. Bev and I had a croissant for breakfast one morning in Paris, I foolishly asked for butter and jelly. I was charged about $5.00 for one little patty of butter and a little container of jelly! You can bet that was the last time I did that!
You know how I keep talking about the importance of a civil society. Well I need to work on the folks here. They cut in line at the drop of a dime. I turned to Scott to have him move over to my line and this man stepped around me and took my place! Heather says it happens all the time. You keep up with the person in front of you and leave no space for intruders! I had words with a lady in Normandy when she walked past all of us in line and tried the handle of the bathroom door. She tried to say she was just trying it, but my look of disbelief turned her away from the door. Speaking of bathrooms, I have to say that my most frightening experience with European bathrooms was at the train station in Lisieux. I’d gotten used to hav ing change in my pocket so that I could use the silly things, but that one was the limit! I walked into the large open bathroom. I looked around for the potty and there was just this hole in the ground and an L-shaped bar. I couldn’t figure out what I was supposed to do. That bar did not appeal to me in the least. Just as I was about to give the whole thing up as a lost cause, water started shooting out across the floor from several directions. I want you to picture this scared Texas woman, pinned up against the door, trying not to get sprayed by all this water! I did not use that toilet! It did provide a laugh for my family, but I noticed no one else was tempted to visit the potty!
Russ tells me we had a little rain. I’m trying to arrange for some of this to go to Richland. We have a beautiful sunny day today, but it is the first since I arrived. So please pray for some rain, pray for our precious troops and their families. See you all soon. May God please continue to bless America.