Back to MAY 16-20, 2000

MAY 21Switzerland Grindelwald / Youth Hostel Grindelwald (26Sfr)

Walk around Grindelwald
At first I was going to leave here, but it was really fine this morning, so I decided to stay one more. I walked around the village and the mountain thoroughly. Steep Alps mountains including the famous Jungfrau stand just before me.

The hostel is remodeled recently and very comfortable. Guests have a bar-code style room key and locker room space are quite big. Yesterday they had a lot of Swiss guests because of the weekend, but today only some Japanese and Korean, Australian and American, etc...

MAY 22Switzerland Basel / Youth Hostel Basel (29Sfr)

At the central of Bern

Leaving Grindelwald, Go to the north along Route 6. Droped at Bern, the Capital, on the way. The old town is designated as a World Heritage and very histric. I had a brief look at Bundeshaus (the Federal council building), Zeitglockenturm (the clock tower), and Barengraben (the Bear Park). Then I left Bern. I wanted to stay for one night but I must be hurry to the north. Passing Biel and Delemont, I got to Basel in the evening.

Basel is located at the border to France and Germany. This is also a big railway terminal for some railway lines from those countries. So lots of backpackers from every country gather in the youth hostel. However, about today, the majority was a noisy kids' group from nearby. The 8-bed room I checked in also had already had 5 kids. seeing me and my belongings, they bombarded every question to me. They look very very happy as they can stay at a room together with their naughty fellows. I remember the school trip of primary school quite clearly and they will surely keep this exciting memory in their mind. 

MAY 23@Germany Bolzstirasse /German Rider Andreas' place

When I checked out, a late-checkout fee was charged to me. I was late for just 10 minutes. I don't understand why they are so strict. But it might be European way. The Asian way of MAI=PEN=RAI thinking should not be accepted here. I did not want to pay such unnecessary money but could not help paying as they were keeping my passport.  

I walked inside the city in the morning. As I had little Swiss francs, I could not enjoy some pay museums. I just walked and finally I lost the way to be back to the hostel, where I had my luggage kept. It was really bad morning!

At a forest road in "Black Forest"

After the 1-hour wandering for the hostel, I managed to leave Basel somehow. The direction is north and I saw the border to Germany in 10 minutes. Crossing it without any check, I and my TT jumped into German "Black Forest" this area is in the south-western part of Germany. Peaceful rural landscapes and beautiful forests spread as far as I could see. One of the best driving route I have ever been. The roads are well maintained and good to cruise. As it is too comfortable to cruise, I felt sleepy strongly and slept for about 30 minutes at a bus stop in the early warm afternoon. 

I tried to call Andreas, who is a German rider I had met on the street in Baleacia But unfortunately; I had no German coins and telephone card. I asked an old-aged rider just getting off his Harley where to buy a tel-card. To be very kind of him, he gave me his telephone card. I managed to call him and we fixed the meeting point. I headed but I had a problem again at the meeting point (McDonald). The telephone in the shop was broken and I could not help asking a guy who was eating a hamburger to use his telephone!

We met in the end. He invited me to a bar and we drunk some beer, which made me feel relieved. Anyway, Today was a quite tough day for me.  

MAY 24@Germany Bolzstirasse /German Rider Andreas' place

I enjoyed German style barbeQ

I wandered around Stuttgart. I found a huge building for a Mercedes used-car dealer. I went into the building. A lot of cars are displayed inside and outside. There are more than 500. This seems to be the biggest used-car dealer in Germany. About price, It is much cheaper to buy here than in Japan, of course.  

At night, I enjoyed a barbeQ dinner with Andreas and his companions. We went to a German old house and arrange an instant open-air restaurant at the garden. He had bought some sausages, beer, wine, and a Yugoslavian sausage named something-chicchi(??). his friends came one by one and in the end we got all eight drunkers. As all of them talked to me in English, I was able to enjoy it very much. Even when they were talking among themselves, they told me what they'd been talking about afterwards. I felt their kind consideration and hospitality. A big difference from when I had dinner with some French people in France. I don't know why they are so different in spite of neighbours.

MAY 25@Germany Bolzstirasse /German Rider Andreas' place

Kids always love motorbikes

I spent a relaxing time at his house and nearby. In the afternoon, I went to a pub and read a book drinking beer. It was a old Japanese collection of Poems called eMan-yo-shuf. It can be more impressive when I read it in a foreign country.

Speaking of Japanese, this town has a Japanese garden named gKusatsu Gardenh.  Here Bietigheim-Bissingen and Kusatsu is friendship city, maybe. But the garden was quite small and always closed, why?

Go to May 26-31, 2000