Results tagged “Washing” from Europe 2016

OMFG this hotel room is fricken HOT HOT HOT HOT HOT. Just miserable. Thermostat is as low as it will go. The heater is not on. Not even the fridge is on (I needed the power point for the laptop). I can't see any vents. So have no idea where the heat is coming from but it's unbearable. Woke up this morning HOT.

So I got up and ran a load of washing.

As you do.

Cost me 40 NOK and I didn't bother drying it, just let it all dry in the room (which it did no problems in this heat).

Breakfast had a lot of variety, and luckily the restaurant wasn't as crowded this morning as it was last night.

Our trip for today was the Trollstigen - the trolls road - a very spectacular road a bit north of Geiranger. But the whole day of driving was spectacular.

First up was going up the eagle's lookout just out of Geiranger which was amazing.

Then a ferry across a fjord which was very pretty.

Then a pitstop for petrol (they couldn't get any in Lom yesterday because of the car show).

Another pitstop at Gudbrandsjuvet for morning tea by a powerful little waterfall.

Near the top of the Trollstigen, right at the top of the pass, we stopped to build trolls (just piles of rocks). So I built a snowman.

As you do.

At the top of the Trollstigen we just kept on going - past the visitors centre and parking. It felt a lot like the Man from Snowy River - where everyone stops at the top but Jim Craig leaps over the edge. It was exactly like that. The road is a lot like the one we came into Geiranger on yesterday, and the eagle's view road this morning - very steep with many hairpin bends zigzagging down the mountain. And the views are *spectacular*. And we had awesome weather. Just an amazing day.

At the bottom they cracked out the Henkell and we toasted the drive. Then we headed back up, this time stopping in at the visitor's centre for lunch (I had an ice cream) and a walk out to the viewing platform.

Just awesome.

Then headed back the way we came. Most people snoozed but I had to look at all the amazing scenery.

Back in Geiranger we went for a little walk to the end of the fjord, then got dropped back to the hotel.

Dinner was much the same as last night, although we got in a little earlier so it wasn't *quite* as chaotic.

Then back to the hot house to do the nightly ritiual. I really need to wash my hair but I'm just too tired. Maybe tomorrow since we don't have a planned dinner so should be able to get back to the room earlier.

It's even later now because a bunch of the photos I'd downloaded yesterday had gotten corrupted somehow so Faststone was crashing trying to rotate them.  In then end I figured out which ones were having problems and redownloaded them from the SD card and they're fine now.  But that took forever to work through and now it's even later :(

So even though the room was the coolest, most comfortable room of the trip, the thick warm doonas meant overheating anyway. So that and all the lights from hopeless blinds meant I didn't sleep all that well. Did I mention we didn't get to bed til after 1am? And I had restless legs so couldn't get to sleep for ages? Although I didn't feel as tired today as I felt yesterday. Go figure. Probably because we had a fairly late start so slept in til about 7am.

Breakfast options were fairly limited. No bacon again! *gasp* Ended up having quite a lot of potato, so a very "carby" breakfast.

Then blogged yesterday from the hotel lobby (only hotel so far on this particular trip that we've not had wifi in the rooms).

Left around 10:30am. Had a couple of small photo stops which was nice - one for the town of Honningsvag, although the light was pretty bad, and one for the fjord, but that one had some reindeer just there which made the stop worthwhile, as it wasn't really a good place for a photo. Turns out the photo stops were just fillers to take up time - because otherwise we'd have been too early to the tiny restaurant we went to for lunch - which had another tour bus there and so we timed it to get there just after they left.  I just had an ice cream for lunch, as I felt like I'd just had breakfast.

Drove onto Alta and to the hotel, around 3pm. Went and found the laundry and thought we'd have a go at doing some washing.

Sigh.

The machine was a very complicated Bosch with way too many cycles all labelled in Norwegian, with no english instructions. Found one cycle that said it would take 43 minutes. It took nearly an hour, and even then didn't spin the clothes very dry. So then into the drier. Another Bosch with far too many options. Whatever happened to two dials on a drier: temperature and timer ?? Why so damned complicated?? After forty minutes we went back and the clothes weren't dry at all. Mum went back again later, fiddled, went to reception to ask for help, found out the drying tray was full of water, tried again, and after probably two an a half hours since we started, gave up and brought all the washing back to the room to try it here.

By this time of course it's 6:30 pm and all I've had to eat since breakfast is an ice cream so I was feeling pretty miserable. So we went out for dinner - just across the way to a little shopping mall. Found a little pizza place and shared a small pizza.

Feel like a big fat blob. Didn't do *any* exercise today (other than a few walks up and down three or four flights of stairs on account of the elevators in the hotel being out of service). It certainly hasn't helped that's it raining here (guess we won't be seeing the midnight sun tonight!), and we're not really anywhere near the fjord anyway, and all the dramas with the washing). At least the blinds look to be good shut out blinds, so hopefully we'll get some sleep. 

The hotel we had last night had an even more open bathroom door. This one you could into the toilet as well as the shower with a couple of clear breaks in the frosted glass. Weird. Also no plugs for the sink to do washing, *but* they do have a free guest laundry, which we used this morning before breakfast (thanks mum!).

Sleep was a bit broken last night. Aircon got it relatively cool, but still overheated with the doona on. I think I might pull the doona out of its cover tonight.

Breakfast choices were a little limited this morning, but still had mostly my usual breakfast (which is getting smaller by the day).

Headed out at 8am. Had a pitstop midmorning, and continued onto Oulu for lunch. We had subway for lunch (I haven't had subway in a month!) and then wandered around the foreshore area looking at all the cute buildings.

Sadly I've lost my mini usb cable :(:(:(:(:( It must have either fallen out at the hotel at some point overnight (maybe at dinner, or breakfast, or in the room), or when pulling the camera out during our stop in Oulu. I'm pretty sad about it too, because that was the cable that I got with my Sony DSC-F828 camera in 2004, and it's been in that camera bag that entire time.

So the GPS was complaining about low battery for a chunk of the afternoon and I couldn't charge it. But it hung in there til we got to Rovaniemi. I checked at the hotel to see if they had any in lost property but they didn't have any. So headed out into the rainy streets to find somewhere to buy one. Tried a couple of places without any luck, but found one in Clas Ohlson. 10 Euros :(:(:( Also super sad-making because I have like ten of the damned things at home but had to spend $15 on a new one :(:(:(:(:(

Dinner tonight was in the hotel restaurant. Salad for entree was nice enough. Mains was meant to be chicken with vegetables, but was actually chicken, fries and huge amounts of bbq sauce. The chicken was lovely but we were wondering what happened to the veggies. Dessert was a nice piece of chocolate cake.

So the hotel we had in Helsinki had these weird bathroom walls that were just glass with a bit of paint on them which plenty of see through spaces to see in from the outside. Managed to convince the thermostat to go down to about 19C (not sure that it actually did) so slept relatively well. In fact we had an early night (21:30) and slept through til 6:30!

Breakfast didn't start til 7am though, and they wanted to leave at 8am, so it was a very rushed breakfast for us (the room was pretty chaotic too, but we went to a second room which was a lot quieter).

Then it was driving driving driving north out of Helsinki.

We had a morning pitstop. I got frustrated with the people sitting in front of us (and will be for the entire trip) who just fuss around when the coach stops and block everyone else getting off the coach. Even the dude's wife was like "stand aside to let people out" but he didn't care :( I hate people.

More driving. Finland is like 74% forest so that's pretty much all we saw all day. Mostly young growth by the look of it as timber is Finland's primary industry.

After the first pitstop they put on some Sibelius. The first track being Finlandia. Except our tour guide will. not. shut. up. He talked for about 80 of the 90 minutes of the first leg this morning and as soon as Finlandia came on after the pitstop he talked just about all the way through it. Sad times.

Lunch was at a similar roadside combo of supermarket and cafeteria.

When we got to Kuopio in the afternoon we went up the tower overlooking the lakes and the town. I couldn't be stuffed waiting in the huge queue for the lifts, so walked up the steps! All 380 or so of them (mum counted)!

Drove into town and to the hotel. We actually got a room with a view of the town square which is pretty cool! And our room is 451.. how cool is that?! ;)

Dumped our stuff, accosted the bellboy and took our own bags up to our rooms, then went for a wander around the town. Lovely weather and we walked all the way down to the lake and back.

Tried to get onto the internet but my laptop refuses to connect to the wifi. The phones connect just fine though. Go figure. Also, turns out this hotel (and apparently the next one) has a free guest laundry. Maybe that's a thing in Finland. Good to know.

Since we couldn't listen to Finlandia on the coach, I found a beautiful video on YouTube (on my phone since the laptop won't connect - sad times) with Finnish landscapes and animals - just lovely.

Dinner was in the steakhouse downstairs in the hotel. Entree was a delicious vegetable soup (mostly tomato). Mains was "crispy beef brisket" whih was just amazing. So tender and tasty. Dessert was a nice enough pannacotta.

I've had something under my left upper eyelid since this afternoon and it's super frustrating :(:(:(  edit: managed to get rid of it before bed.

So this room has a thermostat on the wall but it doesn't actually do anything. Had to keep the window open all night to get any cool air. Which means a massive picture window letting in the light super early. I'm dreading getting further north where the sun doesn't actually set and sweltering because we can't open windows because we need to block out the light. What a strange thing to be concerned about - overheating past the arctic circle. There's another lady on the trip (from Brisbane) who feels the same way.

Fairly good breakfast range. Although I wasn't in the mood for being sociable with anyone.

We had to be out the door at 8:00 this morning. On the coach we went through the whole introduction and safety spiel. Then headed off at nearly 8:30.

We had a local guide for the morning and we drove around Copenhagen looking at some things.

Our first get-off stop was Amalienborg palace (we didn't get to go in), just for a photo stop.

Then up to The Little Mermaid. Going first thing in the morning meant we were looking straight into the sun which was a bit of a poo. Not that my photos from last time were much better.

Yet again I'm reminded how different tours are to doing things yourself. I think I crammed about five times as much in my three hour walk around last time as I did today on the tour.

Although today we did get to go into Christiansborg Palace which was very cool.

And then we were done for the day.

Yup, we did three things and were done by 10:15am.

!?

They left us to have some free time, or could get dropped back to the hotel if we wanted. This afternoon there was an optional excursion. For 51 Euro. So basically we pay for an expensive tour (not nearly as expensive as Outback Sprit though) and just get left to our own devices and if you want to see more things it costs extra. Seems a little rude to me.

Mum decided to go on the optional tour, starting at 12:30, so we filled in some time walking around until then. Went up to the round tower and went up it, then up to the botanical gardens, although really didn't have time to look around there because we had to get back so mum could start the tour. But I really needed some down time so had decided not to go. After leaving mum, I watched bits of the Copenhagen Carnivale which was wandering through town, then tried to find something to eat. Ended up grabbing something in 7-Eleven (not the first one I came to because I couldn't get any service).

Then walked back to the hotel where I washed my jeans, backed up my photos and had a little lie down. Even slept a little!

At 6pm we headed out for an optional dinner. 65 Euro, to a little restaurant in the old town. It was a "Christmas" dinner, so there was roast pork and various sides, and a rice pudding dessert. And a couple of drinks :) The pork was up at least in the top ten of pork I've had - lovely and tender with lovely crispy crackling. Yum!!

Then down to the canal to have a shot of Aquavit (weird right!) and then back to the hotel.

Woke up 5am. But I was stressing about getting washing done and having breakfast before getting into town by 9:15am. So I wasn't getting back to sleep.

So we got up and headed down to the laundromat. Except they must have forgotten to turn the alarm off because this siren kept going off. I was super tired and hungry and the loud noise made my brain explode. We don't think we managed to get any detergent into the machine. Sigh.

Took the dried washing back to the hotel, had breakfast, but I was still super tired and grumpy. Finished getting ready and checked out, leaving the bags and the car at the hotel.

Then walked into town. We got to the Festspielhaus at 9:30, which does indeed tour the Felsenreitschule.

Except.

They don't allow photos. At least at the moment because they're setup for some festival which starts tomorrow. Well I wasn't going to pay 7 Euro to not be able to take photos, especially when it would have taken up an hour of perfectly good sunlight. Maybe next time.

And that's another thing. The damned weather forecasts are completely useless. They predicted rain for today, but it didn't come until much later in the day, and even then not much while we were still there.

So we walked up behind the festspielhaus and over the ridge to the other side. Walked along Nonnberger Hauptstrasse to find where they all had the carriage ride. Then all the way up to Nonnberg abbey. Went into the church this time which I didn't do last time.

Then back down into the old town to all the platzes where various bits of the movie were filmed, and the Mozartsteg.

Finally walked up to Kaputziner Closter to check out the view back to the old town.

Came back down and went to a place where I'd noticed earlier they sold Salzburger Nockerl, which mum had never heard of. So that was lunch (along with some cream of asparagus soup).

Went back to the hotel to pick up our bags, then headed back to Munich.

But with all the roadworks and just general traffic, the trip took about four hours :(:(:(

By the time we'd checked into the hotel, gotten petrol for the car, returned the car, saw about checking into our flight tomorrow and finding something to eat it was after 9pm :(:( So much for an early night :(:(:( Fortunately I didn't manage to bingle the car, so that was a huge relief. Driving on the wrong side of the road is super stressful! Who knew!

The checkin process was super painful. Terminal 2 at Munich airport only has checkin counters for Lufthansa. And its partner airlines in the fine print. So that was a little confusing. So we went to try checking in with the machines, but it both of our names up incorrectly, then refused to let us checkin. None of the human-operated counters showed general checkins, it was all just "bag drop" stuff. We asked the local Lufthansa help and she just said we just had to get in line with the bag drop queue. Really not a very user-friendly process.

By the time we got everything sorted and caught a bus back to the hotel, it was 9:20pm :(

So for once we got a hotel with a reverse cycle air conditioner that actually works!! Hot food options for breakfast pretty limited though.

We were going to go into the old town this morning but the weather forecast was for better weather today than tomorrow, so we decided to go out to the lakes district and the other local Salzburg area sights today instead.

But of course everything was stil cloudy (low clouds covering mountains) and when it wasn't cloudy it was super hazy. So pretty much everything sucked.

We went to St Gilgan first to do a quick photo stop from the lookout.

I wanted to go to the spot in the movie where the little train goes up the hill, and I knew where it was and there's even a road to it, but of course the road is closed at the bottom of the hill isn't it. So that was a fail. (We could have tried to go up on the railway itself, but it would have taken up half the day and we didn't have that much time. Maybe next time. Sigh.)

Next over to Mondsee. Drove along the south side of the lake on the east end where the kids are hanging out of the trees (not really sure which bit exactly though - trees change and clouds covered the mountains). Then along the north side at the east end where they're all on bicycles singing do-re-mi. Again, everything was in cloud.

Continued onto Mondsee town. Went into the Basilica where the wedding scene was filmed (I'd been in there before last time we were here, but got some different photos that I didn't get last time). Then up the hill to the Maria Hilf church - one of the stills in the opening credits.

Next over to Sankt Lorenz. They claim a particular church was used for the opening credits, but the church that's there is different (different steeple). Of course it's possible the steeple has changed - certainly one in Salzburg town has changed. The position looked right so who knows. I was trying to find some other spots there whey they drive along in the car with Max and the Baroness but it was too cloudy and hazy and mum was getting bored so gave up on that idea :(

Finally over to Eugendorf to find another church used in the opening credits. But instead of being on a little grassy hill, it's now blocked by a little forest of trees.

And then back into Salzburg for locations closer to town.

First was the Maria Plain church. It gets about a second of screen time right at the end of the wedding.

Then to places mum was more interested in.

Firstly Leopoldskron for the view to Untersberg. You need to be a hotel guest to get into the gardens though :( Maybe one day we'll be able to stay there.

Then over to Frohnburg. That was pretty cool. And we had a nice view of Untersberg from there as well.

Then to Hellbrunn to see the gazebo. Mum was pretty happy about that.

Tried to go to see Anif Palace but you can't get anywhere near it because it's a private road. So that was a fail.

Brief stop at Elsbethan for a church still from the credits.

And finally to the actual villa the Von Trapps lived in. Again, you can't really go in and see it because it's a hotel now.

So we got back to the hotel around 5pm. The pedometer claimed we'd done 11700 steps so far today ?! I was happy at that point to call it a day, but because the weather forecast for tomorrow was for rain mum wanted to go into the old town while it wasn't raining (just super hazy).

So walked down to find the local laundromat first (at least a fifteen minute walk away :( )

Then down into the old town. Walked along the river for a bit. Then into Mirabell palace. Tried to find the lift up Monchsberg but had trouble finding it. Ended up finding the horse bath first. Eventually found it. Last time we had Salzburg cards so could just go up. This time we had to pay the 2.30. Walked along the terrace and across the top of the hill, which we didn't do last time. Then down next to the theatres. Got photos of the entrance area to the theatres used in the movie, but to see inside you need to go on a tour. Their website says the only tour for the Felsenreitschule is at 9:30am. An advertising board we saw said 2pm. So who knows which is right.

By now it was like 8pm and we hadn't really eaten since breakfast. We thought we'd see if we could find some pork knuckle but of course that's easier said than done when you're tired and hungry. In the end I hacked into a random hotel's wifi and found a place that sold it on the way back to the hotel. But to be honest, it wasn't as good as Zierholz. The meat was ok but there wasn't any crackling (well there was, but it was rubber not crackling). Sad times.

Finally back to the hotel around 9pm. Ridiculous. So fricken tired.

So my day began at ~3:30am when the guttering dude rang. Grunt. Only got a little bit more sleep after than (maybe half an hour).

Breakfast range was even smaller today, but still perfectly adequate.

After breakfast, shutting down the computer, it decided for the second day in a row to install windows updates. Grunt. So had to cart the laptop around because I didn't have time to put it in my suitcase before we left.

Had a morning pitstop near Baden Baden, then onto Strasbourg.

Firstly we had a driving tour of the city, then a walking tour. Quite a pretty little city. Went inside St Thomas Church, had some lunch and some free time, then into the cathedral and up to the bell tower lookout. Afterwards went for a walk back to where we started to get up on top of the bridge gate thingie to look at the towers in the sun.

Then to the hotel. But by the time we'd walked to the coach and driven around the city, we'd actually have been quicker to walk to the hotel. I'd previously looked up local laundromats and found one very close to the hotel, so popped down there before dinner to wash all my clothes.

Dinner at the hotel was ok, but not the best meal so far.

And this room is HOT. They had the heater on when we arrived !?!? so turned that off and opened the window (no aircon at all). But it's still hot.  And the bathroom has these heating pipes going through it that an't be turned off :(:(:( Sleeping tonight might be a challenge.