Today we slept in again... we're trying to catch up on sleep before we go to Paris.
After eating breakfast, we all piled into the van and headed out to Vianden, where there is a beautiful chateau (the French/Luxembourgish version of a castle).
The Luxembourg countryside reminded me of the French countryside. The buildings are similar, and it's very green and beautiful.
Lauren slept on the long drive, and after about an hour and a half we were there. The chateau sat perched magnificently on a hill within the hilly walled town.
We parked our van, and headed down the hill into the town for a spot of lunch. We stopped at a little cafe that had Chicken Nuggy's and sandwiches and other light items. Patti had a quiche, I had a sandwich fromage (difficult to not eat meat around here), and the kids had chicken nuggy's.
I had been trying to call out of the country from Lori's phone, but hadn't been able to get through no matter what I tried. I feared that I was doing it wrong. Since one of the places I had been trying to call was Italy, when I realized that a group of Italians was sitting next to us, I went over and asked them how to call. It was such a relief to be speaking Italian rather than stumbling over French! They explained what to do (offering to speak English... but no, preferisco italiano), and armed with that knowledge I was ready to make a call once we returned home.
Apres lunch, we used la toilette and had some glacé. We walked up the hill to the chateau, and then toured the insides. The chateau has been recently restored, and there is still more reconstruction going on. It dates from centuries ago, with many changes along the way to bring it to its "modern" form. We were able to tour all the rooms, some of which had recreations of how the room was used in olden time. The chateau also had spectacular views of the town down below.
After we toured the chateau, everyone wanted to go up to a restaurant that was perched high upon a hill. To get there, you had two choices: walk down to the town below and take a chairlift up, or walk up a steep windy path to the restaurant. So I took the high road, and the rest of the bunch took the low road.
It turned out that the walk down to the bottom of the chair lift was quite long. Everyone started down the path towards the chair, while I started up the path towards the restaurant.
The path was an isolated, wide dirt path. I only saw a few people along the way. After walking a little ways, I came upon what looked like a narrow, steep dirt path that took off up the hill. A couple with their two bichon frises (barking wildly at me, I might add), were sitting on a bench in front of the path. I feebly attempted to ask them which path went to the restaurant, but I didn't really understand the answer. So I continued on the path I was on.
I kept going on the path for a while, but finally decided this was not going to take me where I wanted to go, so I turned around and jogged back. At the junction of the two paths, I headed upwards, running some of the way because I thought I would miss the others if I didn't hurry. The path zigzagged up the hill... after about 10 minutes, I reached the top.
Looking around, the others were nowhere to be seen. So I hung out by the chairlift, hoping to get a good photo of them. I waited, and waited, and waited some more. After 20 minutes or so, I finally saw them. Turned out the walk down to the village was longer than they'd expected.
After de-chairing, everyone had a snack and enjoyed the view before heading down to the car. Patti, Lori and Lauren took the chairlift down, and Max, Steven and I walked down. We collected the car, and then drove down to the bottom of the village where the chairlift was to pick up the rest of the crew.
We arrived home around 7:30. Lauren, of course, slept the whole way. Everyone changed their clothing and we went out for dinner at a local Italian restaurant.
The dinner was very good. We all had salads and then pizza and then dessert. We had a nice time talking and enjoying our food and finally left for home at 11. A typical European dinner!
After a short game of Taboo, we finally got to bed at 1 again.