Saturday, July 9, 2011
Game Day in Dresden...but first more Wolfsburg and Berlin!
After the U.S.-Sweden loss we were all a little aggravated, but tried to put a good spin on things...grown up take?: "The U.S. gals just saved us a ton of dough in gas money as Dresden is way closer to Wolfsburg than Augsburg. Thank you U.S. Women's National Team, we will pay you back in screaming and cheering you on to victory versus Brazil." So a day and a half more in Wolfsburg...a very cool town known for mainly for the Volkswagon factory. Day one we met up with Olympic and WC Champion and our dear friend Joy Fawcett and her family. We have all known each other for years and the kids all get along fabulously. Joy's folks, Terry and Bev, were in tow as well and we had a super fun time at the unbelievable Phaeno Science Center...Pacific Science Center, sorry to say, BITES compared to this place. We were there for almost 5 hours and didn't even get to every floor! So fun to hang with the Fawcetts, hoping to see them in Mochengladbach...they are now in Augsburg as their plans were dependent on a U.S. victory and group win! Darn it. Last Day in Wolfsburg we visited the Autostadt...basically the Volkswagon's version of Disneyland. Super clean, super cool, and ridiculously awesome architecture. We went on paddle-boat swans, oggled all the different cars in the different pavilions, and had a great meal in the ultra-modern cafeteria..topped off by dessert for the men-folk at Cool and Creamy (desserts that cost as much as the entrees!) Leaving ourselves a good 2 hour buffer to get to Berlin failed...we didn't fail, we pulled McRent out of the parking lot in plenty of time, but Friday afternoon on the Wolfsburg to Berlin Hwy is much like L.A. or Seattle on a Friday afternoon...literally we moved 7km in an hour and a half. Highlight...cramping leg on the clutch and some dudes in the fast lane of the autobahn in a van straight out of Woodstock, hanging our the sides and driving with the slider open...standing up smoking as they crawled down the fast lane. Okay...not quite a highlight, but it was a bad traffic jam and I'm trying to stay positive. Watching the "time of arrival" at destination and with a 9pm camping platz curfew to meet, it quickly became apparent that we needed a new plan: Hotel Time! 2 rooms at Best Western Potsdam for 2 nights. Nice meals, nice people, only one person in McRent at night and a little reprieve from campground life. Off to bed and a big day tomorrow in Berlin. A 5 minute walk the next morning to the train station and in 45 minutes or less we're smack dab in the middle of Berlin. I think the grown-ups knew this ahead of time, but we did it anyway, Berlin is not exactly the GREATEST day trip for a 7 and 9year old, but all 3 of our boys have been unbelievable travelers and game for anything. They've walked more than ever and enjoyed the sites and sounds of Germany. So a nice hot day in Berlin: the main train station, the Reichstag Building (but no visit to the DOME...3 day reservation in advance needed), walked through the Brandenburg Gate
and into Pariser Platz, went and sat and chatted at the Holocaust Memorial where Jack gave the boys a history lesson, and then lunch on the river and more people watching!
Back to the train...oops, this train doesn't stop at our station..passed it by 4, back the other direction...HOBOS..didn't buy new tickets but the train lady was great and let us go back the other way. Very fast, very smooth trains by the way. Back to the hotel in time to get to our rooms, kick up our feet and watch the first two UNBELIEVABLE quarter-finals! Lesle and Amy 0-2, boys 2-0! Dang it! Up today to get a good breakfast before the 2 hour drive to Dresden. One of our most staunch and great blog followers has been Diane Moore, childhood friend of Lesle's! This year instead of a 30 year HS reunion, Lesle and Diane will reunite in Dresden, as Diane, her husband Davis...also a South Torrance HS alum and former Spartan soccer great, along with their friends from London and their eldest daughters, Lindsey and Kelsey, on a whim have decided to fly in from London for the game! Can't wait and Diane, could this possibly top Minnesota for our fortieths? Go USA! Beat Brazil! Hope's family is now here and her personal rooting section will have grown. Can't wait to see the crew from Richland! Stay tuned and cheer on the women in red, white and blue!!