Sunday, August 1, 2010

Heidelberg - Schloss Castle
thursday 29th july

today saw us investigating Heidelberg, getting around on their buses is lots of fun! its definantly a challenge when you are trying to read a timetable in german! We visited a castle which is almost right in the middle of the city! pretty amazing, and only 303 steps to get to the top of the area you need to get to. and of course, it decided to pour! I got as wet as i could possibly get, for yet another time these holidays! after we had seen the castle and were making our way down and out, realized that there were 2 alternate ways to get there,, which did not involve 303 steps!! Had time to look around the shops and do some shopping, Heidelberg is also a pretty city, seems they all look like the postcard photos we have seen. I am going to post some photos this time - at least have a go at it!

Thursday, July 29, 2010


Wednesday 28th July

We had a later start today, as we were late in last night, so it was an easy start to the day. A 3 hour drive to Luxembourg saw us arriving round the mid, so of course meant we had to have our lunch before we headed off for a couple of hours sightseeing in the city. Of course, it was raining nearly all the way there, and was still lightly showering when we headed off on our adventures. Found the city to be amazing, just like all those postcards that you see of tiny cobbled streets with amazing little shops and restaurants everywere. The streets were so clean! The buildings are of course, very old and predominantly sandstone and some of them were undergoing major restoration/renovation. We managed to do a bit of looking around the town at some of the highlights and also got out to the (?) tunnelled in 1700's and then later extended to a total of 23km in length, of course only a small portion opened up for the public. Apparently were used in time of war as there are all these amazing little cave like openings in the sides of the mountains which is were the cannons used to fire from during times of war to protect the city. Very interesting.
We had a quick diversion on hour way home, we visited an American War Cemetery which was 4k's outside of city and it was a touch overwhelming and quite humbling to see row upon row of white marble crosses and stars (star of david) stretching across the best manicured lawns I have ever seen. Stuff like this puts life into perspective!

My comment on Luxembourg, very photogenic and think I could of spent more time there! Particularly the cup of coffee I had, which was more like a soup bowl!
Arriving in Hiedelberg

Tuesday 27th July

This morning found us packing up and moving on. We had a tour bus organized from this point on, so that was really cool....all travelling around in this double decker bus, beginning to feel like a tour! We headed to Heidelberg to check into the "jugendherberge" which is youth hostel. It is really clean and very well appointed in comparison to the previous hotel and hostel. After we checked in we then headed to Bad rappenau, to play the local mens and womens teams. The games were at least played in much better conditions than the night before! The girls had a win and the boys had a loss, but both were really good matches and the sides were so much better than the previous day's. We are staying in Heidelberg for 6 nights, and using it as our home base. Off to Luxemburg to play tourist tomorrow.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Sydney - Seoul -Frankfurt

Thursday 22nd July
Trip from Sydney to Seoul was pretty long, and we were delayed leaving sydney, so that wasn't so much fun! We took off at 9am, and landed in Seoul at 5.40 thier time, (6.40 our time). Had a very comfortable overnighter here in the Hyatt!! Oh, yay! King bed and room to myself!
We awoke to thunder and lightning, apparenty a result of a typhoon somewhere nearby which we had been skirting around when flying in, it was a bit bumpy.

We met up with the other 30 people who had flown out of Melb, and some of the coaches also met us here, as they arrived also, so now we numbered 56!

Interesting place Seoul airport, Incheon. We saw a procession of what was apparently the announcement of royalty, a group on national dress, looked pretty impressive with their swords and scythe looking things!

Friday 23rd july
Flight from Seoul to Frankfurt, even longer, but we had a better appointed plane with screens in headrests, so it was like going to a movie marathon!! I watched 4 movies!! We flew out of Seoul at 1.30ish, and landed in Frankfurt at 5.40ish (that was 1.40am ish our time) arrrgghhh! Then we had to make our way to the train station via the free airport shuttle, and then from the train station a walk to the hotel. Longest walk ever!!! We finally got thier, checked in, which is fun with 56 people, let me tell you! We went for dinner and then finally got to bed, i ended up being awake for about 26hours, was a bit weary!

Saturday 24th July
Next day in Frankfurt, kids had a light training session in the morning, and then the chaperones with the kids in groups got let loose on Frankfurt! we did what all good tourists do, shopped, bought german sims for our phones and took copiuos photos! I will post some when I get a bit more time. The wi-fi in this hostel is only working intermittently and it is user pay. The weather since we have arrived has been slightly cool, 17-18 degrees and a bit overcast. We visited some local markets, and I have bought an oil painting of the Frankfurt skyline, just loved it, and it was 25 euro, roughly 32 that is my foray into the world of fine art!! Probably will cost me a bomb to have it framed!

Sunday 25th July
Happy birthday mum!! it is my dear mums 84th birthday today, and managed to find a pay phone and use my phone card and call her, she certainly got a surprise! Also had to go and do some shopping, we have a couple of kids with the group who are highly allergic, and/or intolerant to a variety of things, so in true mummy fashion, off i went to hunt and gather! Of course, there was time to stop for coffee!
We had to move From Hotel Everest to the Frankfurt Hostel dragged our bags up to the bus stop this time and caught bus to the hostel. Hostel is nice and reasonably clean, and once again after check in we were let loose on this area of Frankfurt! A group of us went to the Main Tower, (Main being named after the river which runs through the city). This tower has 360 degree views over the city, it was realllllyyyyyy high up and even though it wasn't a really clear day, the views were great.

MMMMnnnnn, hostel food, jurys out on that one for the moment, here for a couple of days, will let you know.

Today also saw the U/23 Girls Australian team win gold at thier games in italy - how damn exciting is that!! it was a tightly contested match, with the game point lasting 12 minutes! Congratulations to some of our local gals in that side, as well as our own U/19 captain who was also playing in that tournament, she is to join us later on monday.

Monday26th July
So, here we are in rainy Frankfurt! So not what I expected from an European summer! I guess on the upside, it has allowed the body clock to adjust easier without being too hot and uncomfortable. I think we have got our clocks in sync, we aren't nearly as tired as we were!!
Both the girls and boys team have thier first pre-tour match (consider it thier warm up matches!) this evening, so it will be really good to see them play, as we had yesterdays game rearranged and it makes todays the first match. Will sign off for now, and get back to you if the wi-fi permits with another update , and will attempt some photos for you all. Prost! (cheers!)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Almost Time

Hi All

Here it is sunday 18th july, and its only few days til we fly out. I am just trying to get this sorted out and figure out how to make it work before we leave!

I will be back again later to add some more details - stay tuned!