Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Strasbourg, France part 2

Astrological Clock in Notre Dame
On Thursday the 23rd, we continued our visit of the town of Strasbourg.   Since I was still on my pursuit of finding the infamous cuckoo clock, I wanted to check out some of the squares we had not visited previously.  I had decided to go to the tourist office and ask about my clock.  I find it very funny when you ask someone a question and they don't know what the answer is, they respond as though you asked them if they have found the magical lost unicorn.  "The magical lost unicorn, phufff, you are crazy!!"  Well that was the response I had at the tourist office, no one knew what I was talking about.  I thought well these guys are young I will go ask the older guy who conducts the train tour.  Again, "The magical lost unicorn, crazy!"  So off we went on my foot pursuit of this clock, to no avail.  We did get to visit nearly every inch of the city on foot, but I never did find my clock.  On this day we did get to visit the inside of the Notre Dame Cathedral.  It is so beautiful.  Also inside we did get to watch the astrological clock (not the one I was looking for) and it was quite extraordinary. Joel said it was "out of this world".  Later in the evening we watched an outdoor light display on the outside of the cathedral that they have to celebrate the 1000th anniversary.  It was breathtaking.  They use a light display to illuminate different areas and depict the story of the construction of it, but it was interesting to notice different details of the building that was missed during the day.

Friday was a day I had been waiting for, for quite some time.  We drove to Legoland in Ulm, Germany. Now for those of you who know me, you know that I love Legos.  They are the coolest toy.  They are great for boys and girls and for any age.  One summer the kids and I spent it by rebuilding every set we own and we have tons of sets.  I use "we" because although the sets all belong to the kids I feel like they belong to me also.  Near the end of the process I decided to separate the blocks by color to facilitate the hunt for blocks.  We got some new bookcases and displayed each completed set on them.  Then the Lego movie came out and I apologized to the kids for being President Businessman, I just don't use kragle.  So as you might be able to tell this day was going to be a highlight for me.  Well, it did not disappoint.  First it started with my first drive on the Autobahn.  Crazy!  I did get the car up to 163km/hr.  Whoa.  Once we arrived and in we went.  Immediately they have displays everywhere.  The highlight for my day was going to be Mini land.  This is where they have several cities around the world recreated on a smaller scale all in Legos.  I decided to do this at the end of the day.  We all went on several rides together.  Then we needed to take turn because Eden was not able to go on some of them. The nice thing was that near the big kid rides were themed playgrounds to have something for the little ones.  So although Eden could not ride everything, she did have a ball.  I think her favorite was the water zone.   She ran around for over an hour in her swimsuit giggling and yelling "Mommmy, Daddy, look at me".  She had a great time.  The kids and Justin convinced me to ride a few roller coaster and flume rides.  I don't really like drops but I rode them anyway.  By the way, I still don't like drops.  Rachel, Caleb, Joel, and Danielle all enjoyed my screaming.  Rachel said that she thought a little girl was freaking out, but no, it was just her mom.  Once the rides closed we went to what I was waiting for.  It is truly amazing what they can recreate with Legos.  I've decided forget being a puzzle photographer, I want to be a Lego builder when I grow up.  Imagine spending your whole day constructing these amazing structures, too cool.  We got home very late and decided that since over the last 3 days we had walked 18.91miles we were going to take Saturday as a lazy day and just sit around and rest. We did take the kids to the park later in the evening once the sun was not overhead and the park was shady.

Ninjago Ride
Eden on a Canoe Ride

Caroline by Mini Land
Lego Man pulling Eden
Rachel and Caleb in Lego Boat

Equisheim France
Sunday we headed to the Vosges Mountains.  We took the Crest Road over portions of the mountains and got to see some stunning views.  We decided to visit  Eguisheim, titled the most beautiful village in France.  We parked the car and walked around.  We had not eaten lunch and it was almost 3, so we decided to get some at a local restaurant.  We were turned away at a few and then I was cursed out for asking if they served lunch at one.  She said of course they do, I explained that we had been turned down at several before which was why I was asking and then she proceeded to yell "well that is them this is us".  Needless to say, as hungry as we were we did not eat there and got some ice cream instead to tie us over until we could get a dinner back in Strasbourg.  Eguisheim was very beautiful and the homes are so quaint and lovely.  Since we were in the Rhine wine country Justin and I tasted a few types at a local winery.  We left with a bottle of Riesling and plan on drinking it tonight.  Once back we went and had a lovely dinner at Le Gruber and was served by a very pleasant waitress.

On the steps of a cathedral in Sainte-Marie-Aux-Mines

Yesterday we did another day trip, this time out to the Nurburgring in Germany.  This was a highlight for all the boys, big and small.  The track has 2 parts a 5km Grand Prix track and a 21km toll road "track" (the Nordschleife). Apparently for 27euros you can drive your own car on it, unless of course you have a red license plate, which we do.  The younger boys wanted to drive on the track.  Justin had researched alternative options but unfortunately, none of them worked out since the boys were too young.  Instead, we watched a test day for the up coming 6 hours of Nurburgring.  Luckily, they handed out ear plugs.  Boy that was loud.  It was pretty incredible to watch the cars whiz by.  One even caught fire as it was coming into the pits.  But the best part for me was the smile on each of the boys faces, big and small, as we walked out to the stands to see the race cars.  Once done with that we let Caleb, Joel and Danielle race some go karts.  I think Justin and I might have some future race car drivers on our hands.  After that we drove to a parking spot where we were able to watch the "regular" street cars race on the 21km track.  Once I set my eyes on them I was internally jumping for joy that my Coppin men could not drive on this track.  What we saw were mainly novices but some experts that were flying by at various insanely high speeds trying desperately to apply the brakes before they took a hairpin turn.  I am pretty sure there were some new tires and brakes required for a few of these cars. The session ended at 7pm so we hit the road to get back to Strasbourg.

Near the track as a car speeds by
Kids that look like Shrek with the green ear plugs


Nurburgring Gift Shop

Go-Karts at Nurburgring

Near one of the 73 turns of the Nordschleife track at Nurburgring

This morning Justin and I took Rachel to the train station to put her on a train to Paris for her return flight home.  I, as Eden said cried "like a baby".  So here is a shout out to all of my fellow Colorado mommies, please give her a good mommy hug when you see her since I will not be able to do it myself for a few months.

We leave Strasbourg tomorrow.  Next stop Nendaz, Switzerland!

1 comment:

  1. Took the morning to catch up on your adventures. Fantastic to see all of you are having a great time! 163km/h! Despite some fast go-karters in the family, we all know who the real speed demon is! Happy and safe travels and remember to stop for lunch between 12:00 and 2:00 or you will be eating a lot of ice cream (not a bad alternative.