Kinda looks like a glass mosaic, doesn't it? Or, at least, that was my first impression. Now, look a little closer...
They're locks! "Love locks," which I had never heard of, but are apparently a somewhat new but widespread tradition. How sweet! If only we had known!
Once across the bridge, Kevin took 75 photos that essentially amounted to this:
And, the previous night, we had also crossed and took the exact same photo, only it was dark:
During the day, while Kevin was taking his 75 pictures of Cologne, I became fascinated with a puppy trying desperately to get his person to play with him, while she was busy texting. He stopped being as persistent as soon as I got out my camera, of course, but this is still pretty cute:
It was time to move on to Heidelberg, but not before the most exciting part of the trip so far (for Kevin): riding the train!
|Waiting excitedly for the train.|
We had decided it would be most economical and convenient to get a German Rail Pass. Luckily, Deutsche Bahn had a promotion that allowed us to splurge for first-class for pretty much the same price as second-class, which came in super-handy with our two-weeks worth of luggage. Kevin and I could both wax poetic about the convenience of European rail, but I think that's for another post.
|Tracie likes the train, too!|
After her experience with German rail this summer, Kevin's cousin had strongly recommended reserving seats on the train (which costs a few euro extra), but we threw caution to the wind and had absolutely no problems (yet). We were the only two in a first-class compartment for six, and it didn't seem that anyone needed to share with strangers. Of course, this was a weekday during the (somewhat) low season, so it certainly might be different in the summer.
We took a longer, more scenic route along the Rhine to Heidelberg by making sure to route our trip through Mainz. This was definitely worth it. It took about an hour longer, but we passed through several scenic villages and a number of castles atop the hillside. It was too late in the season for us to do a Rhine castle cruise (they seem to only run through October), but this was a pretty good substitute.
Next stop: Heidelberg!