Friday, September 26th, 1997 Stuttgart, Germany
Up early, I showered and washed my hair before breakfast at 8 AM. The breakfast room was one of the prettiest we’d been in; it was decorated in a French style. Good food, the orange juice was a little strange as they’d added vitamins which gave it a brown look and we didn’t have any eggs. Made our sandwiches and before we left our room we tried to call Manfred at home about 8:30 AM; no answer. Jim & Dave had a real challenge to get the car out of the garage…it was parked front down on an incline. Very difficult to get out without damaging the car; but they did it!
On the road to Oberammergau; everyone except Shari had a queasy stomach from too much beer last night. Picked up the coat that had been left in the hotel in Oberammergau and then headed towards Stuttgart on the country roads. We saw some beautiful countryside. Stopped in a small town for a WC and picked up cokes and potato chips (salt is suppose to be good for an upset stomach). We were going in and out of Austria for a short part of the drive. Dave & Shari decided that we should tell them about each of our children. Took about an hour to go through all seven but it did make the time pass quickly and now they knew our history and we already knew just about everything about their three children. Saw a castle ruin nearby and Jim wanted to find a way there to eat lunch…but we decided to keep going. Soon we saw two hills in the distance with a castle ruin on top of each hill. There was a place to pull off the road with a view of these castles. So we stopped and ate our lunch in the car while we conjured up stories about the castles and who built them.
Dave took over the driving after lunch and we found the autobahn! Three of us had a good nap while our driver worked the afternoon. Arrived in Stuttgart about 3:30 PM and decided we’d best find the hotel and do the Mercedes Benz Museum tomorrow. It took some doing and a stop at the gas station to find our Hotel Mack. Checked in and after a short breather we walked down into the old town area which is a very large outdoor mall. We found the Movenpick Restaurant that we’d eaten in last trip and had a great dinner. Dave & I had spaghetti, Jim has a steak and Shari a salad. Shari has developed a head cold and is taking Contact to dry her nose a little.
After dinner we walked the mall. Inspected several store. Looked at the outside of the Palace. Watched the punk kids and their funny colored hair. Watched three police cars come down the mall with lights on and stop at a department store. They all locked their cars and went into the store…six police in all. Everyone stood around, but soon four of them came out and departed. We figured it was shoplifters. Later we listened to two young men who played music on two xylophones; they were really very good and we listened for quite awhile. We also think that we saw the group from Taiwan (that we met last night at the Oktberfest in Munich) walking down the street; but they were past us before we realized it so we didn’t try to talk with them.
They are busy putting up the beer tents in the Plaza as their Oktoberfest begins in Stuttgart this weekend. They start a week later than Munich and last a week longer. The celebration is for seventeen days. The largest tent says that it is non-smoking. Hard to believe because every tent in Munich was full of smoke! One of the reasons we were glad to be outside. We will be long gone tomorrow when the party begins. But, Jim & Dave may have some crowds on the S-bahn when they go to the Mercedes Benz Museum tomorrow morning. They’re meeting at 7:30 AM for breakfast and an early start. Shari & I are sleeping in and eating at 9 AM; a real treat after having to be up and at em every morning!