12th August, leaving the Black Forest.

In the morning I sheepishly went back to the tourist office. I've got all these places marked I said. I've forgotten why they are marked.....

Just as efficiently a new advisor ran me through the towns, but now I wrote the information on the map. One village she said it's an old village, but I don't know the name in English. That's OK I said. No, she commanded me, wait a few moments. She checked on the computer and said it's an old timbered village.

They are not only efficient they are pleasant too. Laughing and smiling. See, it can be done.......

So here is the old timbered village.

It would have been just perfect if someone hadn't parked that old blue van right in the picture.

Hey Americans and others out there. People live here. It's not a museum. This village is a touch prettier than others out there but otherwise it's no different.

I went to see glass blowing.

OK I missed the glass off the end. But you get the idea.

I went to an old village. Well actually it was a collection of houses and barns and such like, all moved from their original location to here. A huge undertaking to move them, and there were lots of visitors. They were including period furniture in the houses. There was a TV. Huh? They've got older stuff in museums in the USA. Another case of a huge undertaking missing that final sparkle.

Sometimes that sparkle shines through. Sometimes it doesn't. Here it was dead.

What could they do? Well, in Barkerville, in Canada, they had costumed guides giving presentations everywhere. Made the place alive. The entry fee here should be enough to cover this sort of stuff. Just one thing.

After that I went back to the previous village, I'd noticed a sign to a camper car parking. Here I was taken in hand by a couple from Leipzig. He showed me the running water, and the toilets, which I would never have found on my own. He works as second chef at a restaurant in Dresden, a mere 171 Km from his home. He lives in his camper van during the week and goes home at weekends. It was only the following morning his wife admitted to a smattering of English. But a more pleasant couple you could hardly wish to meet.

There was a famous waterfall on the way in the morning. Royalty have visited here. There was a list of famous personalities who have been here, the latest was Ernest Hemingway in 1922. Don't think anyone famous has been since.

There were 100's, no 1,000's, of people paying their 2.50 Euros to walk the paths to see the waterfalls.

Lovely waterfalls.

But just a day later there were dozens of waterfalls, just as good, by the side of the road, whilst driving through the Swiss Alps. Before I got there though, there were some Black Forest views.

I'm limited with Black Forest photos, it was raining most of the time. Think thick forests interspersed with villages from time to time. Hansel and Gretel got lost in this forest but I think it was probably thicker then than it is now.

I crossed into Switzerland, drove for a while, then climbed up high and parked for the night in a parking for a cable car. Wonderful night time views over the town. Then it thundered and lighteninged and poured with rain.

Best regards

David Barker

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