The Parish Church of St George the Martyr, Waterlooville


Having spent a very turbulent night, with my mind going over the previous day’s events, I decided to have a restful day on the camp site and eat worms, well read a book actually. Not to be! It was world cup final week and the children were on holiday so there were football matches going on all around the camp site on every available space, whoopee. Just my cup of tea, I don’t think! Also the weather was too hot to be anywhere near comfortable. That night I had a cold shower about 10pm and at twelve I was laying in bed with the sweat pouring off me, thinking I am not enjoying this one little bit.

Next day I decided to pull my finger out, throw out the worms and do something practicable. So I rode my bike into Bozen (all down hill!), at about 9.30 then took the cable car up to Oberbozen where the air was much cooler, that made me feel a bit better.

Summer Edition 2011

The Happy Wanderer - 2010 Europe Trip or Not the Last Why Me?

Once up on top, there was a small train which one was able to catch for a tour to Klobensteign Colalbro which was a lovely little Alpine town/village and well worth the visit. Some of the gardens interested me, full of gnomes and flowers and other oddities, those who have seen my garden at home will understand my interest in those types of gardens.

Cable car up to Oberbozen

One of the Gardens

Getting the train back to the cable car, it was then back to hot and sticky Bolzano to find the Ice man museum, which I had intended to visit the previous year while travelling with my friend David, but we were unable to get our vans into the town.

It took me about half an hour of riding around the streets and a few directions to find The South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology. It was an old-ish building, which had been redesigned for purpose. All the artefacts and the history I found extremely interesting, but it was spoilt by having to queue for ages to see Otzi’s mummified body, then only having about 30 seconds or less to look at it so as not to hold up the queue. I could not see or understand why they had put in such a small viewing window when it would have been just as easy to put in a much larger one and still kept it sealed in a temperature controlled environment. It was amazing to see just what had been preserved / survived for 5500 years from a 35 year man found in the Otz valley in 1991; weapons, clothing etc, also all they had learnt from tests carried out on his body even to what his last meal had been. Some items had started to decompose as he thawed out before being found, also some damage was done by those who found him while removing him from the ice, but it had been possible to construct reproductions from the remains. All in all it was well worth the visit, as you know from my past stories I am always very interested by the Neolithic Period, it lets the imagination work on what life was like without all the modern amenities and to have lived during that period of time.

It was then time to head back to the camp site, which was a long uphill ride and as the weather was so hot I decided to take a different route. Along a cycle track following the river, then up a steeper but shorter uphill climb, where I thought I would push my bike. This cycle track was clearly marked on the tourist map, so off I went! Lovely ride along the river in the shade of the trees then it was turn right to head up hill, all going well so far! I then came across a building site completely blocking my path. With no alternative it was back down to the river and along into town and back the way I had come. By now I was melting (I don’t do very hot weather) and not having had  a drink all day I was starting to get dehydrated and had to find somewhere to get a cold drink quickly. After about half an hour and a pint of coke, I headed back to the camp site pushing my bike most of the way. On arriving back there were two jobs to do, drink lots more fluid as my kidneys were still hurting also find some shade to sit in.

Mountain Chuffs

Next morning I decided it was time to head for somewhere cooler up in the Alps, so I decided to head for Austria, and to make sure that I could still do the windy roads I took the old Brenner Pass: I must admit my stomach still churned when I saw a group of motor cyclists coming towards me, even now motor cyclists still make me nervous. It brings the accident back to me and getting blamed for something that was not my fault! I had decided to stop at Ehrwald, a lovely little town on the north side of the Alps with a nice restful campsite. I had stopped there previously when travelling with David and decided it was just what I needed, somewhere cool and restful with lovely walks. If it were not so far away I would go for a couple of weeks each year. It was lovely to sleep that night without being too hot and to wake up to the sound of bird song.

view from top of Zugspitze

Although I had taken the cable car up the Zugspitze the year before I decided to go up again as the views were fantastic, it was cold but still sunny, lovely. They also do a nice Brockwurst at the restaurant on the top!  It goes down well with a German beer while sat looking out at the fantastic views, also being entertained by the mountain Chuffs scrounging any food going spare. Chuffs are found at all mountain restaurants, well all the ones I have been to, they are not pests like seagulls who grab food from your hands, they will sit and wait until they see it has been put out or left for them.

One more short episode of the “Why Me” series to follow this one, then I will have a break from writing for a while. I’m sure you have had enough of my ramblings for now.

Christine L Culley