Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Trip to Spain (not really)

This Saturday we went on a university trip for ship-riding in the biggest river of Germany: Rhine. We travelled by train to a city near the river and from there we boarded a small ship that took us on a one and a half hour journey through the most beautiful route in the area. Travelling through the twists and turns of the river, watching big cargo trailers and admiring the greeny hills and small villages in them, we reached our detination town. On the way i made friends with a couple of Spanish guys. Later they talked with an Italian guy and it seemed they could understand each other. Another guy from Columbia joined them and also started speaking Spanish. The group leader was from Peru but had no trouble speaking Spanish. I found a guy from Argentina with whom i spoke English. He also started speaking Spanish with them. It was like i took a ship to Spain. They told me that Spanish is the major language in most of the countries of South America except Brazil (where Portuguese is spoken). And Spanish and Italian are much alike so they understand each other. So Spanish was the language of our trip.

The town we reached with our boat had a big castle, most of which was still standing. We read a sign on the door of the castles that flashlights or candles must be taken to visit the caves. This sign was ignored by us and we went inside - thanks to the rain that came along. We were handed maps of the castles to find our way. After strolling through the castle, we had seen all the visible area in it and were wondering why they gave us maps for such a small region. Instead of waiting for our departure, i took my Argentinian friend (Santiago) to explore some more. We finally reached a cave-opening and two more friends joined us. The more we went into the cave, the darker it got; until it was pitch-dark. I had a mobile with flash-light, so they put me in front and we walked for some time until i announced "i see light". My trailing friends got new energy and we got out. Now they insisted that we go back the same way. So again i was the path-finder. We had seen some smaller caves openings but we couldn't go in them standing. I decided to explore them this time. We sat on our feet and inched into the smaller tunnel. We kept going until the cave sunk with a greater angle and water started seeping in from the walls. It was too dangerous to go further, so we returned. Turning in this small cave was another problem. We turned suffering some bruses. When we came out, we were lost. We couldn't figure out the map and ended up on the other side of the castle. We troted the road to reunite with our friends.

See the trip photos here: Rhine-trip Photos

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