A Travellerspoint blog

Our Last Full Day in Europe

by Ben

semi-overcast 26 °C
View Koning/Zemliak Family Europe 2012/2013 on KZFamily's travel map.

The Gate to Hannah's School in Nancy

The Gate to Hannah's School in Nancy

A wonderful three days with the Poirot family are behind us and only one full day in Europe remains. It was a sad and exciting prospect at the same time. We are eager to be home to see family and friends and experience the joys of a regular productive lifestyle. Nevertheless, we (perhaps just Muriel and I) are sad that the adventuring and sightseeing are now just memories.

Before we left our apartment in Nancy we purged our possessions of worn clothing and shoes to make space for a few souvenirs we bought during our travels. Since each of us only has one backpack and one daypack we needed to keep our acquisitions to a bare minimum. This is a good thing, otherwise we would have likely spent a fortune on the many items we definitely felt like buying but had no space for.

On our way out of Nancy we stopped by the school Hannah attended. The school has at least one structure that dates back to the late 1400's and has some large buildings that are certainly a couple of hundred years old. It is a large campus with a mishmash of buildings of which some are a bit rough around the edges. It was hard to imagine a 15 year old Hannah on her first day venturing into this maze of buildings with thousands of new faces moving to and fro. I would have felt more than just daunted by the prospect. We now have an even greater appreciation of her courage and pluck to have travelled from Canada to France and to live for three months in a totally new environment with only her exchange “sister” as a familiar face.

Hannah's School in Nancy

Hannah's School in Nancy

For the final time we took another “road trip.” It was a four hour drive to Frankfurt mostly along secondary roads through farmland. We had our last roadside picnic which was a hodgepodge of leftover food items. A saving grace was that we still had a bar of Swiss chocolate with which to end our repast. We also enjoyed our last few podcasts together. They have been an edifying addition to our travels. So for one last time I will list our favourites in no particular order as being the Vinyl Cafe, This American Life, DNTO, Wiretap, and Stuff You Should Know. I think our favourite family choice of music has been the quirky and eclectic music by Cat Empire, a band that hails from Australia.

Our apartment in Frankfurt is a “unique” affair which makes it the perfect place to spend our last night in Europe. It was just renovated a few weeks ago and even so it has a number of unconventional touches fir an apartment advertising on Booking.com such as a nearly transparent glass sliding door on the bathroom (use your imagination), a hidden fridge in the living room, blue LED ambiance lighting throughout, a living room sectional that could easily sit ten people and sleep six, and a bed with a flower studded purple headboard with a large blue portrait of a naked woman hanging over it. The owner who hails from Bulgaria has been renovating and renting apartments for nearly 12 years in Spain and has recently moved to Germany to create better opportunities for his children. Apparently, he must have found that this kind of decor was good for business. I am just wondering what line of work his clientèle are in and whether we are somewhat unusual customers for him.

We will watch the final episode of West Wing this evening, something Hannah and Abby thought would be appropriate to watch on the last evening of our trip.

Posted by KZFamily 12:07 Archived in Germany Tagged germany frankfurt

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It is hard to imagine Ben, Muriel, Hannah, Abby and Moe, that the nine month trek, sights and sounds of your European adventures, mishaps, challenges, thrills, gastronomical experiences is coming to a close. I for one have been thrilled to enjoy the armchair experience and have reveled in the blogs, delighted in the pictures and for a very short time sampled a snippet of your experience. Thanks for your inclusion of us at home, in your marvelous writings, clever puns and pictorial additions. I look forward to seeing you all soon and to hear in many days, months and years to come the tales of this wonderful family experience.
(Auntie) Helen

by Helen Koning

It was great to hear the story of your last day there - what a great trip. Blessings as you travel home and make the adjustment back to life in Victoria.

by Harvey Roosma

Ah... I cannot imagine your feelings today. Have a safe trip home and enjoy settling in again!

by Lauren

Helen has stated it so well. Thanks so much for taking us along on your journey..I look forward to your return and the additional stories with in and between the stories you've blogged about..Peace in your journey and return...Gordon

by Gordon

It's sad to read that it's your last day, even though many of us are looking forward to seeing you all again! What an incredible journey you've been on, memories of a lifetime for all of you. It's been fun to read your blog, I'll miss it! 9 months, can't believe it. Safe travels and see you soon...

by sheilat

09:10 pst 07/31/2013
Your last post , my last post. Am just up and saw you Dad's post yesterday about looking forward to you all back so I said whoops , not end of August.
That is wonderful that you were able to spend some days with Hannah's exchange family.
I am pleased you liked the Aussi music , will have to let our crew know :) as to the clear glass for the shower and door , we were in a boutique hotel, business section of Sydney and that was our room. In fact it also had a wee sliding French window that opened to the main room. Not only could one see and say hello but also to the one on the throne. A phone was on the wall so you could accomplish business .. well nuff said. To the Naked Ladies,, part of the décor in many places, we have one on our bedroom .. my gosh.. we bought when first married, still present. Tasteful or course.
LED blue, maybe they ran out of harsh white LED's :)
I will read all the prior few days and wish you all a safe enjoyable trip back home.
Thank you for allowing me an outsider to be p[art of your adventure and hopefully my posts have not caused your families to wonder who these other people are who Muriel knew.
Cheers / Rob

by RobBar

Oh man... what am I going to do without Travelling Family? Oh, right– we get to see you in person... I can't wait!!! Thank you SO much for remaining loyal to your blog throughout your entire trip. I can't believe that the posts only got more and more entertaining and clever-er as as your trip progressed! Thanks to you and your adventures, I've definitely caught the travelling bug. (I'm not sure that my parents are too happy about that...) May this trip of a lifetime and the memories you've created be refreshing, impassioning and inspiring to you as you return to "normal" life! (Will it ever be normal again?)

by jaalders

00:26 pst 05/08/2013
OK,, The thing is if you start a travel blog than one expects to see entered a final post indicating ones arrival at your original departure port and the journey involved.
So, waiting to see the closing post :) :)

by RobBar

Hang on Rob -- the last post is coming, soon hopefully. Got to get the 'real life' stuff out of the way first. Muriel

by KZFamily

23:28 pst 08/13/2-13
Luv it Muriel
Yup,,, School prep, work start, BILLS, a ton of mail delivered. If like us , the mailman arrives in a truck and rings the bell, 10 lbs of mags and numerous elastics
Cheers ( ps>. see Jane is wanting to organize a Prior Claims group luncheon soon

by RobBar

As one of your dedicated readers(who has been out of touch fore two weeks from your blog) I have now caught up on your latest adventures & wish to say to say I will miss all those wonderful descritions of your experiences. I felt that I was with you all the way. Thank you to each one of you. See you in September Muriel! Sharon

by Sharon Gelling

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