Sunday, December 16, 2012

Cardano al Campo - Åkarp

We are possibly known to always choose perfect timing for certain things, and let's say that taking the car from Italy to Sweden could have been done in another moment of the year, without involving this much snow.
Nevertheless, we travelled just bringing few essentials from my home, leaving on a Tuesday afternoon.
Mattias, the official chauffeur of this tour, took it very easy and according to the speed limits (no comment here...) especially through Switzerland.
The roads were snowy and after crossing even Austria, we landed in Germany.
It was also getting dark, it was time to make Isabella eat (and possibly sleep) and we decided to leave the highway for trying to find a random place to sleep (yes, we were very well organized for our trip).
Pity though that it was pitch black so it was not possible to see anything around us and unluckily, my sim card was not very cooperative when on roaming. After few tricks, we finally managed to use TripAdvisor and landed in a pitoresque and drowned in snow little town, Kißlegg.
The hotel that we managed to find was called Hotell Gasthof Ochsen.
The place was cosy, the staff very professional and helpful and the room comfortable and clean.
The only problem was that it was too warm for us (as almost every place, at night), but otherwise it was very spacious and had a good price as well.
We even ate at the restaurant and the menu was quite interesting and what we ate was very much appreciated: however, we didn't have the time to think through our choices or enjoy fully our food since our daughter was in the way most of the times ;-)
The waitress tried to distract her with some crayons and paper but the result became more work for us :)

After a restorative (sort of) night, we took off again and the driver made a big leap, in the morning, and covered a quite nice distance.
Pity, though, it was very much starting to snow again.
Not too far from the highway

We stopped to eat at some random place on the highway, nothing that is worth even remembering and, hoping that we would be home in the evening, we put ourselves in the car and started the trip again.
800 km to go
Well. That was about it, basically. It some indefinite part of Germany, a queue started to form. We could simply not move forward that much, and the trucks we were passing were standing still or attempting to move in a quite messy road.
We lost 2-3 hours of our trip just hoping something would get better. Luckily, Mattias took advantage of the forced break to read the instructions of the car navigator and learnt that it pointed out the existance of queues or road blocks, so as soon as we could, we decided to go out from the A7 to get into the "road 27", which was almost running parallel and with less queues.
That went fine, pity that when it was time to get back to the highway we managed to take the A4 towards Berlin...and that was definitely not our intention.
After losing so much time (and patience - just imagine singing "Mamma mia" 700 times per hour...) we decided that we could not make an attempt to go home that day: it was too dark and the weather was still bad. It was time to find yet another random place where to stop for the night.
This time, we went out at Kassel but instead of going to the big town we moved towards Kaufungen and the only free hotel was something called Burgerhaus.
Here two waitress were attending too many tables, swirling around them with an impressive efficiency. In all of this, they even managed to give us a room and bring us to it.
The room was far from being as cosy as the other place, and despite the "forbidden to smoke" sign, everything had a fantastic background taste of smoke.
The dinner was the usual show, trying to feed our little overtired beast, and eating some nice steak at the same time.
A room with a view
Collecting energy at breakfast
OK! Just 684 km to go! The navigator was targetting our arrival at destination at 15:11. What a woman! She guessed just right!
The last part of the trip went definitely smoother than the rest. The roads were almost clean and we were just so happy of reaching Denmark, after a short ferry journey, with only 200 km to go.
Last part of Germany, reaching Puttgarden
A familiar danish landscape

 Reaching Sweden was the best part of the trip. It never felt nicer to finally arrive there, even though we were slightly afraid that all our imported food (among other things) would have been confiscated.
But, well, despite everything and the fact that we arrived on a Thursday at 15:11 (almost) extending our trip of 7 long hours, we are very happy that we have done this and that we have managed to bring so much stuff home, especially the "affettatrice" (slicer) which we inaugurated today with great success!
Now, next trip (possibly done in a better season) it will be the turn of carry north books and manga!

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