We began the 2nd week of our European adventure with a fun-filled excursion for Cameron - driving the Autobahn. We arrived at our rental car pick up in Binz only to discover that the facility was closed. We searched open cars, looked all around the building, and tried calling the number on the locked door to no avail. About ready to turn and hop on a train instead, we soon realized that we had made the cardinal Amazing Race rookie mistake…we hadn’t read all of the clue card! Evidently, in fine print at the bottom of the rental email, it indicated that we should travel next door to the gas station and ask the attendant on duty for the car keys. What made this stipulation even more hilarious was that the woman did not speak English and we did not speak German, so her inspection of our American passports made both of us giggle at the trivial formality.
Part One: One if by plane, two if by train, three if by bus, four if by boat, and five if by car
As you can see from the title of this section, it is quite complicated to get to Ostseebad Binz. After finally making it to Copenhagen (one day late), we hopped the train over the bridge/water to Malmo, Sweden, where we got on a bus and quickly realized we were not in Kansas anymore. From this point forward, we were the only native English speakers that we encountered until we reached Hamburg. We drove out of town and spotted a gigantic Ikea, bidding us adieu as we entered into the Swedish countryside. Trelleborg was our destination at this point, but after the 4th stop in the small town, we started to get nervous that perhaps we had missed our stop. Kindly, a gentleman who was also headed for the ferry to meet a friend agreed to escort us through the rain to the ocean. It’s a small world after all as we quickly realized that this gentleman had visited San Francisco and had quite a bit to say about our hometown. After confirming our tickets on the ferry, we had an hour or two to spare so we decided to frequent the Turkish establishment we had passed on our walk through the town. Running past a beautiful statue/waterfall that spilled over the top of bronze women with umbrellas, we settled in for a cappuccino (which was just ok) and a kebab wrap (which was excellent). Without our phones to guide us (the Frankfurt airport tried to rip us off by charging 39.99 euros for just the card with no data!), we sat and chatted as the rain poured down on the passersby, none of which seemed to need an umbrella.