Friday, July 16, 2010
We'll be sleeping in the same bed for the 4th night tonight. Strange... It's odd not packing the backpack in the morning, and due to the soft mattress and the pullup wound along my back and butt (Matt, don't ever tell me again I'm not putting out :)), my back has been hurting more than when I carried the pack all day long. Rob continues to say "every day I sit in this hotel room, I get weaker, and every day Charlie squats in the bush, he gets stronger." When I ask him what he means, he just gives the same reply. "Can we just have cold rice and rat meat for dinner tonight?" I am not sure what he means by this, but I don't press the issue.
We cut out the last four days of the trip. When Dione and Gerd joined us, they were still recovering from a cold, and I guess weren't quite prepared for the up and down, and the long days of hiking (because contrary to popular belief, we did hike - not only drink and eat). Unfortunately we missed one of the most beautiful stages, also one of the more strenuous ones where you couldn't bypass anything with a quick bus ride. Initially Rob and I thought, we could maybe go back and do it later at some point, but when we realized that it takes almost seven hours to Oberstdorf, plus the few additional hours to my hometown, I think it's highly unlikely that we'll make that train trek again.
Hiking in Oberstdorf is certainly different than back in the hinterland. It's very busy here. Taking the gondola was like being herded into a cattle car, and going to the Breitachklamm, a deep gorge, strangely enough reminded me of my first trip to an Ikea (which had just opened up), and people were just moved through, had to stay in a line, and if you didn't want to be trampled unconcious by the crazed furniture shoppers, you had to move with the crowd. But hopefully it still gives Gerd and Dione a taste of the Alps without having to carry a pack and the need to hike steep and long sections.
We won't spend another day in Oberstdorf, although Rob has been going on a hunt of the Oberstdorfer "Wilde Maennle" (see picture) and made it his task to get to the bottom of this old legend. Gerd already knows the town like the back of his hand, and so we decided to take a day trip to Munich.
Petra reporting from Oberstdorf.