Casa Grande, AZ
A bus picked us up after breakfast for a ride to Speyer, Germany. It was comical because the city had a large parking area for all the tour buses. The Viking bus was already parked when we arrived. Jorn, told us that the Viking bus had to wait for the local guide and if we hurried we could beat them to the bathrooms at the top of a hill. Our group hurried so fast up the hill, that we beat Jorn. You have to pay to pee in Europe, but Grand Circle pays for you. Some of the group arrived before Jorn could pay so the potty guard ended up being paid twice.
Here's the "gate" to the town. One of the vendors setting up for the Christmas markets said he pays $1,000 Euro per week to place his owned portable shop in the square. I can't imagine what it would cost for a busier Christmas market. You have to make a big profit to cover that. The price does include the land and the electric.
We enjoyed our home hosted visit. It's always nice to visit someone's home and learn about a specific family. This one was a little strange because one person had taken the trip before. On his previous trip he visited someone that had portraits like this lady had hanging on her wall. When he asked if it was the same artist she said "yes". Our friend then asked if she knew the artist. She said, "yes, it was her ex-husband!" It turned very quiet after that and we were glad it was time to leave.
The bus took us back to the MS River Melody. It is a sister ship to our previous MS Rhapsody. It was nice to be back on the water. Our luggage was waiting in the same cabin location and stateroom number.
The following morning we docked in Strasbourg, France. Jorn walked us over to the trolley stop and gave everyone a trolley ticket. The trolley took us to the Christmas shops and the Strasbourg Cathedral.
The trees were just starting to lose their leaves.
This is the Strasbourg Cathedral and is an important monument from the Middle Ages--11-15th century.
Here's the side of the cathedral without the scaffolding.
If you saw the news a few weeks ago about the terrorists shooting this is where it happened.
Here's how all the storefronts looked on that street.
We all took the trolley back to the ship at different times but the crew was waiting for us. Each crew member had a letter spelling out "welcome back" and of course there was drinks and refreshments.
Since it was Thanksgiving, turkey was on the menu for dinner. I couldn't make up my mind and they brought two entrees for me.