Friday, August 26, 2011

First trip to Europe in 26 years!

Mike and I lived in Germany for the first three years of our marriage. I was stationed in Augsburg as part of the Army military intelligence service, and Mike worked for Sony in the PX system. We loved living in Bavaria and the opportunity to travel throughout western Europe. We always planned on returning to Europe, but life, kids, and work got in the way.
Today we’re head back to Germany! We’re flying Aer Lingus through Dublin, and then transferring on to Munich. The reason for the trip? We’re celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary with a 12-day, 5-country motorcycle tour through the Alps with RoadRUNNER Magazine, followed by a week-long barge/bicycle trip in the Netherlands.
We started figuring out what to pack – and what to leave home – earlier this summer. We have to carry everything with us on the motorcycle, and the barge has very little space for suitcases and luggage. Our goal is to bring only the essentials – motorcycle gear (including helmets and raingear), bicycle gear (including another helmet) and a minimum amount of extra clothing. Thank goodness RoadRunner sent us very cool bags for our motorcycle helmets, since we’re using them as our carry-on luggage. A camera and paperback book fit nicely inside the helmet! Check out one of our suitcases, full of motorcycle gear:

There always seems to be some sort of malfunction when traveling, and we had two today.
First, our dishwasher started leaking about 45 minutes before we planned to head out the door. Mike pulled out his tools and worked his magic, but if we had left while the dishwasher was still running we could have had some serious water problems in the house.
Second, I took out my contact lenses and put on my glasses when we got to Logan Airport in Boston, and the promptly forgot to put the contact lens solutions in the checked baggage. When my carry-on was identified for extra scrutiny, I knew immediately what I had done. The contact lens solution bottles are too big to pass airport security, so I’ll be looking for alternative solutions once we get to Germany. At least I have my glasses!

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