We started the day with hotel breakfast. I had scrambled eggs, a couple slices of bagon, a weisswurst, some hash rounds, and 2 little miniature pancakes with nothing on them. Also some sauteed mushrooms. I learned later you’re not supposed to eat the casing on the weisswurst, but it was good. They also had a cappuccino machine.

At 9 AM we were on the bus and headed to Speyer, which was not on the original itinerary, but was added after the Rhine river cruise in Mainz became impossible due to the flooding. The ride up to Speyer took probably a little over an hour.

This entire region is the Rhineland, and it looks exactly the Missouri Rhineland, which was named for the original Rhineland. Oak trees, rolling hills, bluffs, and vineyards all around. Verges and sidewalk areas, and the center strip splitting roads are not mowed. That may be due to wanting to leave those natural for pollinators like bees this time of year. We’ve seen a lot of un-mowed areas already.

In Speyer, we walked through the cathedral gardens to get up to the Speyer Dom cathedral. This cathedral, and apparently the other Doms in this region as well, were specifically “for the emperors” or something to that effect. The Speyer Dom had crypts with at least 4 emperors buried there, from the same family line. This cathedral was also beautiful.

After that, we walked past an area that was historically Jewish, then visited a Prussian Union church, which was much newer. The Union church had balconies all around, lots of wood, and is rather ornate for a protestant church. There was a German lady present who told us about how they were proud of the democratic decision where 99% of people (excluding women) voted to become a Union church. We were probably not the right group to tell that detail to! The origin of the LCMS is Lutherans leaving Germany to avoid being put into the Union.

From there we went up to the main market area over to a Biergarten for lunch. Apparently this wasn’t a “real” Biergarten per our guide because you weren’t allowed to bring your own food. Shannon and I split the Brewer’s Plate, which consisted of a small steak, 2 small pork chunks, fried potatoes, sauteed mushrooms, and green beans with a white sauce. I enjoyed everything but the green beans, which I declined to try. I got a small Radler and Shannon had an Apfelschorle, which is a German apple juice soda type drink. We liked the Radler so much we ordered a second larger one.

After lunch we walked back to the bus, and then rode down to Worms. Speyer is a city of approximately 50,000 people, Worms seemed much larger at 80,000 people. We de-boarded the bus and walked to a monument of Reformation figures, of whom Luther was at the Center. But Zwingli and Calvin were also represented among others. From there we went to the Worms Dom cathedral, rounding out the 3 Doms in the Rhineland region.

Luther also appeared in the stained glass at the Worms Dom, which was interesting. I think this is because in Germany, Luther is a national figure as much or even more so than a religious figure. We returned to the bus which took us back to our hotel in Mainz.

Shannon and I walked to a restaurant called Cubo Negro for dinner. We split a bruschetta, a cheddar burger, and some fries. For dessert Shannon had a Caramel Macchiato ice cream cone and I had a lemon ice cream. It may have been gelato. Shannon drank a Rose wine with dinner and I had an Old Fashioned. The Old Fashioned was quite good. The entire meal was somewhat expensive, over 50 EUR. Water is not included for free at restaurants. Other than at the trip-provided meals, we’re kind of taking half rations, which is probably good for us, and as much as we actually need anyway.

I called my mom to check in when we got back to the hotel, took a shower, and went to bed.