As we headed towards Europe, I sensed that there was light out the window, so I lifted the shade to a spectacular and fast motion sunrise- somehow traveling towards the sunrise at 600 miles per hour makes it happen a lot faster! Breakfast on the plane was pretty much the same as dinner- steamed vegetables, a roll and applesauce. We flew over the North Sea and as we had a long descent I was able to watch the barges going all different directions and several windmill farms as we continued east. Flying over the Netherlands, the countryside is criss-crossed with hundreds of canals, and the farms had incredible stripes of colored flowers interspersed with brilliant green grass. Landing was smooth, and we deplaned to catch our next flight to Stuttgart 1 hour later. Sheldon seemed very hurried to get to our next gate which was all the way across the airport. I thought an hour was plenty of time, but I am glad we didn’t dawdle. We made steady progress from one side of the terminal to the other, and since we had to go through a passport check, we made it to the gate just in time to board the flight. I was able to look out the window at some more spectacular countryside during the flight.
Once we landed in Stuttgart, we made our way to baggage claim and out of the airport. We found a taxi that would use our pre-paid voucher to take us to the hotel. The driver knew very little English and Sheldon’s high school German came in quite handy. At the hotel, the driver asked us if we needed a ride to the Mercedes factory in the morning, and we said yes. He asked what time and Sheldon told him to come at 9. I kept saying come at nine, which seemed to confuse the driver. Sheldon told me I was saying “no”, not “nine”, which in German is noin. (I think I should let Sheldon do all the talking in Germany).
At the hotel, it was nap time. Our bodies were telling us it was 3 am. After about a 3 hour nap, we headed out to find some dinner. We found an Italian restaurant called The Flying Ship. It struck us as funny to find an Italian restaurant in Germany with an American name. I ordered water, and they brought seltzer water, no ice. High school German didn’t teach Sheldon how to ask for regular water. But it was refreshing, and we were able to order a pasta dish for me with no cheese successfully. The crusty bread they brought was really, really good. We headed back to the hotel and went back to sleep until we both woke up at around 3 am feeling pretty refreshed.