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December 13th 2013
Published: December 13th 2013
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Banjo players look outBanjo players look outBanjo players look out

A machine that plays the banjo
Have been slack

In the last 5 days we have had lot of things to as well as some illness. A passenger went down with a severe bout of flu on Day 2 and didn’t surface for at least 3 days. She has managed to infect pretty much the whole ship with even the cruise director Evonne getting ill.

On our sail to Nuremburg Gaynor managed to develop a serious cough. I was not the best either so we decided that we would have a day on the boat, keep ourselves warm and hopefully kick the bug. One fellow traveller Dianne offered to buy us some cold medication whilst ashore, we gave her an order for some lemsip and cough medicine. It was quite relaxing although Gaynor was going downhill rapidly. Dianne returned with some goods and we proceeded to partake. My German style lemsip worked well for me, Gaynor’s cough syrup seemed to only drive the lurgi deeper. Her health deteriorated over the next 24 hours

We next sailed to Bamburg ( and did a walking tour of the town. Very interesting how these Kings, Queens, Princes & Bishops control the population to the point
Auto ViolinAuto ViolinAuto Violin

A machine that plays 6 violins at once
of being able to build huge residences for no other reason other than somebody else had one. Probably where keeping up with the Jones’s/Hapsburgs developed from.

Wonderful little town with a pleasant little market. Very quiet in town as it was Sunday and no shops were open. We visited a church that had one of the oldest Nativity scenes set up, nice old church. Had a nice time at the market and headed back to the bus for the boat. Gaynor was going downhill rapidly and spent an afternoon drinking Lemon and Honey as well as cough medicine. Not working. We sailed for Wurzburg and Gaynor spent the night propped up on 4 pillows to alleviate the congestion.

The next day Evonne (cruise director) asked if Gaynor wanted to see a doctor, she ummed and ahhed, I said get the doctor. If anyone knows Gaynor, once the cold gets onto her chest drugs are needed. They were going to try and get a doctor to visit the boat but we ended up going to a local female doctor. Interesting process with the doctor sitting at the desk whilst the trainee doctor (we think) did the stethoscope thing and blood pressure. I handed over Gaynor’s list of current medication, raised eyebrows, followed by a blood glucose test (through the roof). Final diagnosis was a chest infection causing partial lung obstruction. She was prescribed antibiotics plus some herbal remedy. We will see how we go. Back to the boat and Gaynor to bed with a dose of medication. I headed off to Rothenburg on my own. It was good trip nd disappointing because Gaynor loves the old style german stuff and this was some pretty old stuff.( )

I thought Gaynor needed cheering up so I purchased a scarf for her. I managed to make purchase as well, a nice mantle clock. I think I have spent more money than Gaynor so far. Back on the bus to the boat. Gaynor was still unwell but she said the drugs felt like they were working. We sailed to Werthiem.

Tuesday we arrived at Werthiem and headed off our village events. These were organised for small groups and done by locals. I chose the bike ride and Gaynor had chosen the biscuit making. Amazingly enough she was well enough to head out (good drugs). I had a good time on the bike and we covered about 26 klm’s in under 2 hours. It was pretty casual, but good. We all had lunch in Freudenburg at a 607 year old cellar under the town. The boat had sailed to join us, we boarded and headed off to Rudesheim. (!C(MISSING)3%!B(MISSING)Cdesheim_am_Rhein)

Headed off at 2pm with a local glass blower on board who gave us a presentation on his craft. Very entertaining and funny. He made a lot of money out of it and obviously does his roadshow a lot as all his equipment and merchandise fitted into 2 large wheely trunks. I reckon he sold around €7000 to €10,000 worth of sales. He hopped off at the next lock and a Zither player got on. He was a brilliant musician and made playing a very technical bit of gear look simple. He had a projector set up so you could clearly see how he moved his fingers. Very professional and he did a great version of the theme from The Third Man.

Arrived in Rudeshiem around 8:30am. Went for a tour of a Mechanical Music Museum

( which was fascinating if for nothing else the tour guide who spoke in a well-rehearsed Marlene Dietrich drone with a nasal twang that made your ears ring. The variety was amazing but the stand out was the one with violins (6 off), cleverstuff. Walked around for 1 hour and found a coffee shop that made a Brandy coffee that was delicious. We also bought a suitcase to put all the stuff we had bought whilst on tour. Back on the boat and headed to Koblenz ( to visit Christmas Markets. They were pretty ordinary from the merchandise point of view, mainly for drinking Gluhwine and sausage eating. Back to the ship and off to Cologne.

Arrived in Cologne and Gaynor and I did the walking tour ending up at the Cathedral. Very impressive structure. We went to a local Christmas Market where Gaynor found some stuff she hadn’t seen before so that went into the Cache and I had some sausage. I also did my 1st Geocache. I have been introduced to this activity whereby items are planted all over the world and you use your GPS to locate/find them and you record your discovery (, I can see it being very addictive.

Onto the bus to Dusseldorf to catch the boat and have our Captain’s Farewell Dinner and tour highlights. We had some spare time in the afternoon so we did a practice pack. Gaynor’s 2 bags weigh 26kgs whereas my 1st bag is only ½ full and is already at 23kgs. Will have to reorganise.

Amsterdam tomorrow and another bike ride, looking forward to it

Catch you soon.



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