For the last month I was in Europe on the trip of a lifetime. My family had been planning this trip for a year. Seriously planning it. We had talked about it times before but it was more of that desire that seemed highly unlikely. However, God provided and we went. Dad did all the travel arrangements and we all pitched in with deciding which apartments we wanted to stay at. Soon we were packed and headed to the San Fransisco airport.
After a day of travel, we made it to Paris, France. We were blessed with an entire week filled with tours of the Louvre, Versailles, St. Chapelle, Notre Dame, Marie Antoinette's village, and much more. Mornings were filled with coffee and croissants. Gelato was almost a daily luxury, if not there was some delicious pastry in its place. We walked at least 5 hours a day, and every night had to climb 80 steps up to our apartment. It was hot, and rained almost daily, but the weather did not stop us from our adventures. We became experts on riding the metro and navigating the streets.
Italy was our next stop. Vernazza for half a week and Venice for the rest. We rode many trains, ate dinner by the shore, took a boat trip to the nearby towns, hikes. Gelato was a must and a hunt for new seafood was fun. I had one of the best calamari up on the top off a giant hill. Mom was the most adventurous in her meals, but I was close behind. Although it was mostly different kinds of shrimp calamari, and pastas. We did have a few pizza's while there and man they were delicious! Venice we road many buses, visited a glass making island as well as a lace making island.
We were blessed with one day in Austria, where we experiences a yodeling and dance show with dinner. Our hotel was old, beautifully crafted and let us dwell in the heart of the town. We walked the streets, saw the community hanging out, listened to a band play "The Way You Look Tonight", and listen to the sound of fellowship. We ventured across the river, into a few churches and then out for some yummy dessert. Although our time there was short, it was beautiful and a place we all want to go back again.
Our last stop was Germany. Everything is green, country, beautiful, and inspiring. The towns are adorable, with elegantly decorated houses, pastures, horses, cows, tractors, shops and restaurants. We visited Neuschwanstein Castle, Hohenschwaugau Castle, Linderhof Castle and others. Driving on tiny roads and up into the Alps was amazing and it was also humorous to listen to a British GPS guide trying to say German street names. We visited Hitlers underground bunkers, view the Eagle's Next from a nearby lake, and took a boat ride from town to town. The food there is excellent and hearing Mom and Dad speak German was really cool.
This short overview of the last month cannot even start to describe the incredible journey we took. God provided for and blessed us greatly. We had a time to bond, to grow together and learn new things. This trip was extraordinary and I am so glad I had the chance to go. Traveling has always been fun and traveling with three of your best friends is even better! Going places is exciting and I can't wait for the next expedition.