Saturday, December 20, 2008

Rudesheim and Rhine Dec 19

Rudesheim & Marksburg Castle, Germany December 19, 2008

This morning we are at Rudesheim. We will take small trains to visit Siegfried's Musical Museum. This afternoon we will see castles on the middle Rhine and visit Marksburg, the only undestroyed castle. I am really looking forward to that.

Checking my email took quite a while. Somehow the bookseller didn't get the order for my book, so I hope it will be there when I get back. Good thing I contacted him.

I used the iPhone as a music player last night and an alarm clock this morning. It worked really well. But we are not sleeping well. Of course Peter will me crabbier about this than I am.

Siegfried's Music Museum was ok although we have seen these sorts of mechanical music machines before but I didn't realize that they don't alway work well in really cold weather and the building was freezing. However the interiors of the fourteenth century part of the building were the real prize The trip from the ship into town was on a rather silly "train." I suppose that it was helpful for people who can't walk very far. After the museum we walked around Rudesheim and found a bag that will work for my stuff before strolling back to the ship. I took pictures of ducks and a couple of Peter in front of the ship.

Peter wasn't feeling too well today but things have gone ok for the most part. We met Pete and Pidge, who are a really nice couple from Columbus. They both worked at colleges in Miami. Pidge was the first PhD at Florida International University. I had breakfast with them and they invited us to sit with them at lunch. We watched the castles on the Rhine. Pete showed me how to get to the login page for the ship's wireless. Pete took pictures from the sundeck, Pidge and I sat in the lounge and Peter went to rest in the cabin.

Then Peter and I went on the tour of Marksburg. It was fun. The walk up wasn't too bad but you had to be careful with uneven footing, narrow stairways, and inclines, although they were not too steep. I got some good pictures. Although built in the twelfth century to protect the town of Braubach, much of the castle was from the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The castle had never been destroyed but it was occupied by different families although primarily by the Katzenelnbogenand wasn't used as a main residence. Eventually it became a prison and then was restored and is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Middle Rhine Castle area. So it was not a residential castle like Burg Elz, which is still maintained by the original family.

After dinner Elmar Bretz is going to give a talk on the Rhineland and the EU. See the next post for my comments.

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