9th September 2016. Bertingen, Germany.

We were going to Magdeburg today only it was such a nice day we decided to stay another night (which may have been a mistake we discovered later).

Darren had lots of work to do and in the afternoon we went over to the restaurant for lunch and sat and ‘people watched’ for a while then went back to the van so Darren could finish his work.

Later on we went out on our bikes to see whether we could find the lake that the hotel was supposed to be near.  We’d looked around reception to see whether there were any leaflets mentioning what was in the area but there weren’t any.

We cycled along the cycle path and ended up outside the village on a road that appeared to just go to another village, suddenly there was a huge commotion and hundreds of geese started flying round in circles.

We cycled back the way we’d come and decided the water must be where we’d just seen the geese so we turned off on a concrete track which suddenly turned into sand.  While we were trying to decide whether to carry on I noticed a big white bird flying round a field of cows and dotted amongst the cows were a load of other white birds which I think might have been Ibises.

We cycled back the way we’d come (starting to become a bit of a habit!) and followed the cycle path back past the hotel then started the other way.  We spied a sign which mentioned Elbe, and another word which we didn’t understand and cycled down through the woods hoping to see the River Elbe.  We did get down to the waters edge, it was full of birds, which was great but they were the same species of birds we’ve seen EVERYWHERE on this journey (except the bird of prey which I enjoyed watching but was very hard to photograph).

We cycled back to the track

and carried on along the cycle path until we decided that it wasn’t a very exciting journey, gravel pit on one side and pine forest on the other so we turned round and just as we were about to cycle back I caught sight of what I thought was a sheep wandering along the road through the forest (we could hear sheep baa’ing) when we looked again it was a huge fluffy white dog who was marching along as if he had somewhere to be.  He was all on his own so maybe he was taking himself for a walk.

We cycled back to the hotel and it had suddenly exploded with people, where did they all come from!  As we cycled through the gates a man holding a glass of lager started saying something to us, he looked grumpy and we thought he was telling us we weren’t allowed in there.  We told him we didn’t understand and he spoke in broken English and said “Swimming?” when he realised we had no idea about swimming he wandered off with his drink and we carried on back to the van.  In our absence three more vans had turned up and the owners were sitting in the shade trying to cool down.

We decided that was a great idea and actually got our chairs and the scabby table out and sat outside until it got dark, that’s a turn up for the books!  We had a rethink about where we were going tomorrow, our intention was to go to Magdeburg but we wondered why we’re spending so much time visiting towns when I try very hard NOT to go into town when I’m at home.  Our latest plan is that we’ll go to Goslar and spend some time in the National Park, let’s see how long that plan lasts.

We also downloaded up-to-date maps for the SAT NAV, let’s see if that lessens the amount of time we’re ‘off roading’, mind you even that wasn’t without its fair share of hassle.  Darren had bought a memory card for the SAT NAV while we were in Schwerin because it wouldn’t allow him to update the maps until he had a larger memory card.  When he put the memory card in it informed him that it had too much memory and he couldn’t use it!

Luckily (?) my tablet had just broken so he took the memory card out and used that.  My step-father Bri has very kindly offered to send not only the generator but also a Kindle and a new hard drive for my photos, I don’t know what we’d do without him.

Unfortunately we discovered why there were so many people there, there was a big party going on at the hotel.  We thought it had stopped at midnight then it all started up again with a vengeance.  Who’d have thought such a quiet, out of the way, place could suddenly become party central!

Leave a Reply