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The First Three Days

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Today I send out another Blog, this time by a guest author, my daughter, Kathryn. It was one week ago today I drove Kathryn and her mother to PHL for their trip to Germany. The two of them seem to be surviving quite nicely and I am so glad they have had this opportunity to spend time together as well as be with the Grands & Greats as they transition to their new duty station in Germany.  So my friends, read on and theRooster shall return later.

Heading Out

Once dropped off by our fabulous chauffeur, Herr Lee, we got through security, ditched our luggage, and walked the Philly Airport.  We went to the USO for an hour or so.  I took a nap, mom played Bob One “O” and others in Words with Friends, and we enjoyed stretching out in preparation for the flight.

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We boarded our flight, it got off a bit late.  The flight attendants were fabulous and extremely professional.  That was the high point of the flight. There was a broken bathroom, so the line for the bathroom went the whole line of the cabin.  After 7.5 hours, we landed in Dublin.  The best part of landing was being able to stand up!  the most interesting thing in Dublin and this part of the trip was border control.  We moved into line to enter Ireland and noticed 2 lines, there was one for all EU, and another sign for mom and I that read…. “Rest of the World”.

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After an hour layover, we were on to Düsseldorf.   Arrived at 11 AM.  Got a taxi to the Marriott.  The staff and concierge were delightful. Checked us in, let us know there was no water until 4 PM, and we fell asleep for a few hours.

That afternoon, we took off with an U Bahn pass and went into the big town of Dusseldorf, to the Ko, or Königsallee.  As we came up out of the station we were surrounded by white tents.  We had happened upon the city three day Food and Drink Festival.

 

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Gourmet Festival Düsseldorf 2018

We were surrounded by everything Jeff and Lee love, brats, weinerschnitzle, kartoffel, and every wine, beer, gin and other “cocktails” were available.

 

 

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Foodbeast photo

 

We saw hundreds of beer tables all over.  It was a great time, kind people and lots and lots to see.  We bought some pepperoni for Zed, a few glasses of dry (troken) German and South African wines, had spetzle for dinner, and absolutely enjoyed the beautiful evening.

 

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Thanks Wiki

The next day we got up, had a fabulous German breakfast (soft eggs, cheese, breakfast meat, fruit, coffee, tea). There is so much I miss about Germany, and breakfast food is one of those things.  We headed out Day 2 to the large market at Andreaplatz.  WE had figured out the transportation and every street and stop brought back memories of my time with Jeff and our fabulous life in Berlin so long ago.

 

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Day 3 we didn’t have great plans.  We had thought of church, but the masses were so late after checkout we opted out.  We went to the Hauptbahhof to find our train.  Getting tickets was easy, so was getting a marzipan croissant, hot and fresh, along with my milkkaffee.  We boarded the quiet train to Erkelenze, a quick 1 hour ride, then got on our bus to Geilenkirchen.  Mom, ever the trooper, hauled her suitcase up and down stairs, platforms, busses.  She is amazing!  Sunday’s in any German town are quiet, and our Sunday here was no different.  After checking in, walking up 3 flights of stairs (who needs Elevators in buildings?) and dropping our stuff, we got on our way to investigate the town.  We went to the local grocery, ReWe, and bought cheese, rolls, meat, milk, coffee and tea.  Oh yeah, and they have nice wine for 2.99 a bottle.  Why is our wine so expensive?

 

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REWE Store

After our quick jaunt, since Sam and family had already arrived, so we took a walk 1.5 miles (with 1 mile up a large hill) to the Davies family. (Thank The Lord for Google Maps!  So worth the 10$ a day international with Verizon). The kids had a lovely guest house with lots of room and beds and a great back yard.  Karin’s Guest’s House did a great job for them with a car, fully outfitted home, cell Phone waiting with minutes, kid TV and toys. The kids looked good, happy, running around, but Sam and Zed looked gray and pasty.  Within moments of our arrival Sam and Zed hopped off to check out the McDonalds and see what they could get for the kids for dinner.  They came back with all sorts of chicken tenders and fries and little bags of gummy bears.  They then left a second time for real food, groceries, etc (a challenge on a Sunday night we have all come to find out).  No restaurants took credit cards, they had no euros yet, and got limited groceries.  Mom and I bathed the kids, got them all settled, got Zoe in bed, kissed everyone good night, then high tailed it to our apartment.  At least the way back was all down hill.  As we came down the hill we noticed a Bitberger Pils sign, and decided to stop.

 

 

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I think theRooster might enjoy one of those also.

 

We ordered a beverage, sat outside and absolutely enjoyed a lovely night watching people walk around the town center.  We were surprised by the wasps everywhere.  The restaurant had small cups of coffee and lit it on fire to keep the wasps away. It worked!  After an hour outside we headed back to the hotel. We stopped at a little Italy 🇮🇹 restaurant, ordered spaghetti Carbonari to go, and came back to our small apartment and enjoyed a lovely dinner in our jammies.

Here is a Blog from a travel writing Military Family, in this article they wrote about the ReWE experience. http://www.worldtravelingmilitaryfamily.com/rewe-grocery-store-germany-shopping/

Thank you Kathryn, you did theRooster proud. Many thanks to all who are following along. Peace my friends.

elderly couple

Yesterday daughter Sarah and friend came by to check on theRooster and brought a lovely salad from Panera. Feed the Elderly, they like food.

Criss Cross

As I commence writing this post, I should have done something like “Travels with Charlie,” Steinbeck’s book, or some kind of version of it.  After all, there are four Standard Poodles in the Rooster’s family.

The Rooster’s family just does not sit still. Be it a town within a state, a state within a country or multiple countries throughout the world, they are on the move folks. Some spouses are crisscrossing and waving to each other out the car, bus train or plane window.

 

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I have big shoes to fill!

 

For today, Jeff is at home on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. As some of you are aware, he just returned from Stockholm, Sweden 48 hours ago.

 

Oleary pub Stockholm

Can you believe it, the man finds an Irish Pub in Sweden, and look who it’s named after. Edmund and family would be proud.

 

Oh and daughter Kathryn, Jeff’s other half, she and the Rooster’s wife just left PHL yesterday afternoon for Düsseldorf, Germany after an, Oh so brief stop in Dublin. I’m sorry Rita no time for a visit to Kilkenny.

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That’s my girl! Doing Dusseldorf one glass at a time. Cheers my Love.

 

Before that Sweden visit, Jeff happened to slip into Thailand, the Philippines, and New Zealand, then coming home via San Francisco. On the way out it was west to east, so he got a circumnavigation in. There must be some kind of a reward out there for that, right? Ah, there is, but it’s for boaters. https://www.cruisingclub.org/award/Circumnavigation

Bankok fish 3busy street in BankokFish in Bankok 2Tempe Bankok 1 Bangkok, Cheap shopping and fish stories.

The Air Force family of Sam, Zed, Mia, Ana, Dax and Zoe as many of you know, have transitioned from Tinker AFB in OKC, shipped most of what they own to Geilenkirchen, Germany and have been attending Squadron Officers school. I reported on that a while ago. We had them here over the fourth if you remember and off they went to Michigan for a few days before arriving at Maxwell AFB in Montgomery, AL. Sara’s daughter. Our Grand and Sam’s cousin went with them to be a Nannie.

 

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The Davies Crazys at Aunt Sarah & Uncle Greg’s house.

Hey Sam, how about a graduation photo!

Things got a wee bit busy in the cramped quarters at the base, and after a week or so, Kathryn and Abby drove to Charlotte, met the family and transferred the kids and Rachael and returned to the Eastern Shore for a couple of weeks. Jeff and Kathryn reversed the trip two weeks ago, and they made the transition in Salisbury, NC this time. It was right after that switch that Jeff headed off to Sweden.

I must give a round of praise for Abby and Rachael. Those two girls were just amazing in caring for their three nieces and nephew. Rachael by day ran a well-organized house with four children five and other. When Abby returned from a hot day’s work at the nursery, she would help her mother and Granny with baths and what all. Granny made most of the weekday meals. Kathy would work the hospital by day and grandchildren by night. Folks, these are four women who can start on my team any day of the week. Semper Fi my ladies, Ooh-Rah!!

 

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Daughter Sarah at the Biltmore.

 

For the past few days, the Oregon G-Parents have been with the kids and Rachael in the Atlanta area. Great Wolf Lodge and the Aquarium were on that schedule. Stacy and Elaine took a few days off from the Cattle Ranch in Frenchglen, OR to spend some of the last days for a while with the kids. ( I’ll do a blog on the Oregon grandparents and their ranch soon)

Sam and Zed graduate today, head to Atlanta tomorrow and fly out Saturday with the kids, 4, 5 & under!!!! They will be met on arrival by Granny and Kathryn, (G) &  (Great Granny), on landing, and help with the Jet Lag and transition for the next week. Grannies, the gift that keeps on giving.

Texas Flag

What about Rachael you ask. Well, she just happens to be taking a phone job interview as I write and left today for Austin, TX as a possible new home location. Rumor has it there may be some Mid-West Irons in the fire also.  https://www.statesman.com/news/local/for-second-year-austin-named-best-place-live-america-news-and-world-report/1R3DZ3wmujbm8r7GakwaMO/

And Abby, the recent college graduate has been hired by the local hospital working in an off-site Neurology office. She has been in a training program for the past few weeks learning the ins and outs of an office tech. Put that Psyc degree to work young lady.

The Connecticut connection of son Matt, Beth, David in NYC, Kevin, Jill, and Rebecca have no Moss growing beneath their feet either. Mexico at an all-inclusive two weeks ago, a week at Cape Cod and a quick trip to Gloucester, Massachusetts has rounded out their travels. Matt, David, and Kevin also did the Circle of Hope Hackers Conference in July. https://hope.net/

 

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Mexico, Thank the Lord you got there prior to the wall going up?

 

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The CT Crew in Gloucester, MA.  http://schooner.org/

 

Kevin did get two weeks in at Ft. Drum, NY with the guard and will start at UConn next week. He also spent some time in New Hampshire with the Love (Marissa) of his life and her family.

As for the Rooster, he got a shot of juice in his Right, Hip Bursa this week, and he’s halfway through a Pastoral Care in Hospitals course. Should he be found worthy at the completion of the course, he will be a Pastoral Care Volunteer. We can only hope they won’t be upset at having a Rooster roam their halls.

Thanks again for dropping by. Cooler weather comes in soon, the leaves will begin to change and soon the smell of Turkey will be wafting from the oven. I know this will happen as the Wolly’s are starting to appear on the roads.

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elderly couple

Don’t forget to check on the elderly.