Wednesday 9th November 2011

First sighting of Austria
First sighting of Austria

Wed 9. Obling to Vocklabruck, Austria 80 miles. Frosty start to the day, woke up and looked out of the curtains this morning and saw that the hotel I stayed at looked out over a lake, no time to enjoy it got to get moving, that’s one of the troubles when you arrive in the dark you never know what’s around you! Had breakfast and went to settle up the bill, they hadn’t put last nights meal or bar tab on, should I say something or not? I nearly did but then thought it’s there fault not mine, so I proceeded to pay then made a very hasty exit, feeling rather guilty! Made good progress this morning and was in Austria by lunch, think I wanted to get as far away from that hotel as possible, just in case they came after me! Once the frost had gone it was lovely and sunny I was even just in a t shirt for a while anyway I went up this hill either into cloud or fog but the temperature just plummeted, I went past one of those chemists where they have the sign saying the date, time and temperature, it read 4°c it must have dropped a good 14°c! Never saw the sun again not a very nice end to the day, riding in the dark and in the fog and I don’t think much to Austrian drivers they come so close, they don’t even toot! Still it’s all ok now I’ve had a couple of beers!

Tuesday 8th November 2011

Parliament building in Munich, Germany
Parliament building in Munich

Tues 8. Mering to Obling 82 miles. Bit of a late start today couldn’t get my bike out until 7 so decided to have the breakfast, which is always a good start to the day. Managed to find my way through Munich fairly easily, apart from one women who was shouting at me for being on the road instead of the cycle path, she’d probably had an argument with her husband in the morning and wanted to take it out on somebody! Even recognised places that I visited last year on route to Italy. Last night in Germany tonight so best have a few beers! It’s Austria tomorrow, the question is do I cross the Alps or head a bit further north and go along the Danube?

Monday 7th November 2011

Castle in Leipheim, Germany

Mon 7. Geislingen to Mering 83 miles. It’s starting to get pretty cold now especially when the sun doesn’t come out. Seemed to go the long way round today, after riding for nearly 2 hours I went past a sign that said I’d only gone 9km from where I started! Good laugh in the hotel last night with a couple of locals and the staff, I couldn’t get the internet on my notebook so the Chef who obviously knew everything, tried and failed and just wouldn’t listen to anybody else, after a while he did give up and the second chef and waitress did it straight away, much to his disgust! Cycled along with an older man for a while he was off to see his daughter a couple of villages away. Think there’s some Bavarian event going on in the hotel tonight, unless they always wear traditional clothing when they go out! Perhaps there’ll be some thigh slapping later!

Sunday 6th November 2011

Breakfast in Pforzheim, Germany
Breakfast at the hotel in Pforzheim

Sun 6. Pforzheim to Geislingen 84 miles. Been on the road for a week now, it’s not going quite according to plan, I didn’t factor in that it would get dark so early and I thought I would find more campsites, but hotels are better just not very good for the budget. Mileage is down a bit but again mainly due to the hours of daylight. Huge breakfast this morning, see picture, and that was brought out after I’d eaten the continental breakfast! Perhaps they thought I looked malnourished!! Ended up riding into Stuttgart on the motorway, just couldn’t find my way in, then had a nightmare getting out, if I could have gone round I would have but there was no other way. Whilst trying to find my way out I asked a lady on a bike which way, as the cycle path that lead out was closed, she wasn’t too sure either so she went one way and I went the other, turns out mine was the wrong way! So I turned around and went back to where I had left Annik (as I later found out was her name) much to my surprise she was heading back in search of me because she had found a way through. We then rode the next 10km or so together to the next town where we had a coffee. Turns out she was a journalist and her sister had cycled around the world a few years ago! After our coffee we parted company and I continued on my way, still getting lost! It never ceases to amaze me how kind people are, I mean Annik didn’t have to come back for me but she did and I will always be grateful for that.