Wolfsburg - Minden

Last Monday, the 30th of July 2018, we were still in Wolfsburg and used the morning to walk towards the Schloss Wolfsburg and its park. This is what the castle looks like, the white façade on the north, the east façade on the left. Look for more using this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolfsburg_Castle.

  • Schloss Wolfsburg’s park (I)

    A walk in the adjacent park is an experience of ultimate tranquillity. The benches to sit on are pink coloured, the waste buckets...

  • Schloss Wolfsburg’s park (II)

    ...next to them are lined with artificial grass. (We, of course, have to make a selection from all the pictures we’ve made.)

That same day one of us visited Autostadt (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autostadt), an attraction park next to the huge Volkswagen factory. This picture, by the way, was made on the 14th of June when we passed Wolfsburg on our way towards Berlin. We could not find a place to moor then, in contrast to last Friday, the 27th of July.

  • Vespa 125

    One of the most interesting buildings is called ‘ZeitHaus’, housing a load of different means of motorized transport, as designed in the past. Our love for the Vespa scooter never faded as it was the first, therefore having the greatest impact. The one in the museum...

  • Vespa 50

    ...dates from 1954, ours must be some ten years younger. A picture of the two of us sitting on our very own Vespa was taken in 1966. Note the difference in position of the headlight. Our second Vespa was a beige 125. It never outrivalled the first one though.

  • Messerschmidt KR 200

    The ZeitHaus proved to be an unfailing source of joy. Take the left one, for example, a Messerschmidt KR 200 designed by Fritz Fend in 1959. He was a former aircraft builder. This brought back...

  • Heinkel Kabine (© Lothar Spurzem)

    ...memories of a friend who owned, around 1965/6, a Heinkel Kabine. He lived in Rotterdam at the time and even then driving a Heinkel Kabine in the centre of the city caused a few surprised looks.

  • Bugatti 57 SC Atlantic (I)

    The front. No words

  • Bugatti 57 SC Atlantic (II)

    The rear. Flabbergasted.

  • Bugatti 57 SC Atlantic (III)

    The left. Speechless.

  • Bugatti 57 SC Atlantic (IV)

    The right. Incredible.

A Porsche 911 S, design 1968. This is the type, we think, the Dutch Rijkspolitie used to patrol the Dutch highways in the sixties and seventies of last century. For a nice picture of the livery in those days see https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rijkspolitie#/media/File:Porsche_911_Rijkspolitie.JPG.

We were unable to resist sitting in a contemporary Porsche (type ?) and ask a bystander to make a picture. This was for the first time in a Porsche – most likely the last time as well. The funny thing is that a Porsche stands out when seen from the outside. Sitting inside is more or less like any other car – not all that special.

  • VW Beetle (1938)

    Any comment on this type of car is superfluous,

  • VW Beetle (2003)

    especially for all people born between, say, 1945 and 2005.

The last one from the ZeitHaus, being a Citroën DS 19. The design dates from the mid fifties. More about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citroën _DS. This model is still timeless, we think.

On the premises of Autostadt two towers are to be found, containing all types of Volkswagen-cars. They are stored or taken out automatically in a matter of, well, almost seconds. One of them can be visited, using a ‘car-platform’, thus imitating more or less exactly what happens when putting in or out a car. It costs an extra € 6,00 but we did it anyway.

VW-tower

This is what happens when going up the 84 meters (280 feet) high tower. Seven people can go up/down. We were in one of the front seats.

A view down when in the top of the VW-tower. It was pretty impressive.

On Tuesday the 31st we left Wolfsburg at 8:46AM after having been there during four nights – which is longer than normal. The Schleuse Sülfeld was reached at 10:44AM. We had to wait until 12:44PM(!!) before we were able to enter the lock. Going up 9 meters took us from 12:59PM till 1:16PM. After a further uneventful cruise we ended up at/near Braunschweig at 3:15PM where we had an overnight stop. Here we are; nothing more to say about it.

The next day, the 1st of August 2018, we left Braunschweig’s surroundings at 8:44AM and arrived at the last lock for us in the Mittellandkanal, Schleuse Anderten, at 1:47PM. The waiting time was ‘only’ 33 minutes and we negotiated the 14,7(!) metres (49 feet) difference in level within 26 minutes. This is the view when leaving the lock.

We were able to find a place in the Yachthafen Hannover at 4:30PM. That meant a cruise of a quarter of an hour less than 8 hours!

  • 01.08.2018 9:10PM

    We enjoyed a few breathtaking views in Hannover and couldn’t make a choice about the most beautiful one.

  • 02.08.2018 9:02PM

    One click on a little picture and an enlargement is yours. At least that’s how it works on our computer.

When in Hannover itself we could not skip a visit to the city for the second time. The sudden change of the weather wrecked partly our visit from Wolfsburg after all. During the first visit we forgot to make a picture of Ernst August (von Braunschweig-Calenberg) (1629 - 1698). See https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_August_(Hannover). His statue is placed on the Ernst August Platz (you guessed it), in front of Hannover’s main train-station.

  • Fisher family (overview)

    Hannover, and a lot of other German towns and cities for that matter, commemorate the past – especially when WWII is involved. This part of the pavement attracted our attention. A seemingly entire Jewish family was carried...

  • Fisher family (detail)

    ...of towards Auschwitz and murdered there. Even a child of only 4 years of age! It makes one’s heart bleed when seeing this. How difficult this must be for any German – and how brave not to obscure Germany’s past…

About a week ago we saw the Neue Rathaus only partly from a distance – sitting on the top-floor of a hop-on hop-off bus. This time we did visit it, especially with a view to climb its dome. Well, climb, most of the time there’s a lift…

Hannover city, the 13th big city of Germany, population over 530.000. Here’s a view of the city from the Neue Rathaus’ dome towards its central train-station – the building with the green roof in the centre of the picture. There’s more, of course, but errrr.. more of the same, so we skip that.

Two days later -having been on the mains and taken all the drinking water we could- we left Hannover on Friday the 3rd of August 2018 at 12:12PMnd cruised some 25,5 kilometers (almost 16 miles) and stopped at Haste around 3:22PM. This picture shows where that was, a long and often dead straight canal. It tends to be a bit boring (‘langweilig’) sometimes…

On Saturday we left Haste at 9:04AM for a cruise to…? We had no plan, but it ended up towards Minden, where we are now. Just before reaching our intended stopping place we crossed the river Weser. As you can see, there’s still water in her (It’s Die Weser, so female). Big loaded ships are still going down through the lock, so that’s still possible.

Here we are, since yesterday, Saturday, 1.29PM. We have been at exactly the same place during the weekend of 9/10th last June. This picture was taken from the south bank – towards the double lock leading into the river Weser. There’s a large commercial ship visible in the background waiting for one of them. (In June we pictured our ship from the north bank. So a picture is just….. a picture.)

Ventilator

It has been extremely hot. We did not (yet) melt though and use a little ventilator when cruising. It helps. A little bit. (‘Every little bit helps’ – Tesco, when we lived in the UK.)

A set of foldable chairs we already bought, in Stratford-on-Avon to be more specific, during our narrowboat-era. That’s at least 10, possibly 12, years ago! (The purchase.) We install them in the shadow a.s.a.p. after arriving somewhere – and drink a sufficient amount of liquid stuff, thence avoiding dehydration symptoms. Well, we need a drink right now. It’s warm again. Bye bye.