You get attached to stuff while you're away, like baked beans and Branston Pickle. But what about a collapsible blue plastic bucket?
Our Dutch neighbour on the Stellplatz advised Mike that instead of using our drinking water to do handwashing he should take water from the river like all the campers here do. Fresh off the mountain, clean and uncontaminated. Suitable for all uses, except drinking. He showed Mike the best place to go and lower the bucket into the river. In his rustic element, Mike disappeared off shortly after lunch with the bucket handles attached to some yellow nylon washing line and his green watering can. A few minutes later he was back, mission successful. With the watering can full, I could get on with the washing up. He returned from his second trip downhearted. "I've lost my best bucket". I went over to have a look and you could just make out the blue in the deepest part of the water. So of course I had to go in and get it didn't I? My mission is pictured below. I enjoyed the experience, feeling a bit naughty and exhilarated. Swimming in a river, fully clothed, during the day. Behaviour more suited to a teenager's Saturday afternoon. The current was quite strong which added an element of danger and it was very difficult to see the bucket which had lodged on the deepest part of the river bed. I was determined to get it on my first dive, and I succeeded. Mike is chuffed to bits and I am now his personal heroine for the afternoon. Incidentally, having just flowed off a mountain the water was very cold indeed.
We've decided to stay a few days here in Oppenau, a small community in the Black Forest, southern Germany. On the way down we thought we had found our ideal stopover next to a lake at Muggensturm. Then the first train went past and we realised how close to the mainline we were. Freight and a high speed passenger service, one every 5 minutes. A fairly sleepless night ensued, the sound from the railway competing with the storm that rumbled on until dawn.