This is the second of two blog posts on the great rowing adventure. You can find part I here.

Steve's brother, Rick, asked if he'd like to join the Santa Cruz Rowing Club on a two-week rowing trip to England and Germany. The group planned to row 4-person skulls on the Thames river in England and Moselle river in Germany, four days in each country and over 100+ miles.Sure! Sure? Rick was an experienced rower from his college days and founder of the Monterey Rowing Club. But Steve? Not so much. Actually, not at all. But he was game to try. Colleen, my sister-in-law, and I went along to cheer on the troops (and do a bit of touring ourselves).

we stayed in the quaint town of pommern, situated right on the moselle and in the midst of wine country.

couldn't have been more perfect!

the rowers

PC: Steve Rosenthal

who knew the moselle was so beautiful? Not me. vineyards and castles abound. the rowers had quite the view!

nearby town of cochem (cough while to say it to get the PRONUNCIATION just right.)

Wall mural depicting the long history of the town.

colleen and headed to the cologne cathedral

the Hohenzollern Bridge

I've seen the "locks of love" at various places, but never as many as in Cologne! Some estimate that there are over 40,000 "Love Padlocks" on the Hohenzollern Bridge.

next stop, trier

Trier is one of Germany's oldest and best preserved walled cities. And, it's a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

It's also famous (or infamous) as Karl Marx's birthplace. In 2018 following years of negotiations, Germany accepted a statue of Marx from the Chinese government in celebration of what would have been his 200th birthday. Not surprisingly, the statue is a bit controversial.

street scenes

Colleen and I were joined by her daughter, Anne, and her boyfriend, Matt.

the final leg of the trip. the crew pulled out in the small town of berg eltz.

grand finale for the trip - hike up to berg eltz one of the most well preserved medieval castles i've ever seen. its near pristine condition is due in large part to its location, high atop a craggy hill. The 33rd generation actually still lives in the castle.

a grand time was had by all!

A huge thank you to my bestest travel buddy!