Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Saxon Switzerland Part II

It was around lunch time when we reached the top, so after taking 99,000 photos, 

we sat down to munch on some fresh rolls, goat cheese, strawberries and grapes. Yum! We continued on our loop hike through a complex network of paths. Because of the surrounding sandstone, the paths are covered with a layer of fine white sand. Reaching the next overlook involved a very long descent and, since what goes down must come up, an equally long ascent where hands were definitely needed to keep from sliding off the rock face. 
The group felt that they needed some assistance, so they found some great walking sticks. Umm... Dawn? Are you sure that stick is the right size? Always trying to outdo everyone, eh?
When we got to the top, we drank the rest of our water and then admired the view. Again, a spectacular panorama was stretched out at our feet, and we took full advantage of the possibilities of digital photography. 

To prepare for the next leg of the trip, a nap was felt to be in order, and as it turns out, eroded sandstone makes the perfect place to snooze. 
We were sorry to leave this spectacular spot, but there were rain clouds looming on the horizon, so we made tracks for the parking lot. In this case, tracks meant long staircases! The rain luckily held off long enough for us to buy a variety of cake from the wood-fired oven in Schmilka. In fact, while we were devouring a large piece of "Bee's Sting" (Bienenstich) cake, the sun came back out. Kaffeetrinken (afternoon coffee-break with cake) is mandatory in Germany. After wishing that we had bought more Bienenstich, we took a short jaunt into the Czech Republic. It was a really odd sensation to drive right past the old border with its gigantic passport control buildings.
Now, you can just drive right across, and the only thing that changes is the language the road signs are written in!We had a really great time in Saxon Switzerland, and the rain even  held off until we finally hit the road again.

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