Europe in 1964

grandmaRgrandmaR Major grinsSouthern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
edited November 12, 2013 in Journeys
Ship Follower

I was going to Europe to meet my husband's USN ship. He was a pilot and flew S2Fs (antisubmarine planes) off of an aircraft carrier (photo of the plane)
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which was supposed to have the following itinerary

11 June - Leave Norfolk
21 June - Arrive Med
23 June to 26 June - Palma Majorca
3 to 8 July - Cannes (refuel)
10 July to 15 July - Naples

(do sea maneuvers)

23 July - one day in Rota Spain
25-30 July - Valencia Spain
1 August - anchor off Majorca - no liberty
3 to 8 August - Toulon France
15 - 22 August - Naples

24 August - leave Med

Between 3rd and 5th of September - arrive home in Norfolk.

I was to meet him in Valencia, Toulon and Naples. I was leaving my two children (age 3 and age 9 months) home with my mother.

The first part of the trip I do not have my photos nor do I have at least one letter I wrote so this is a short summary. Starting July 14th, I drove from Norfolk to Baltimore with the children, got on a train to Philadelphia, took a taxi to the German Society headquarters, boarded a bus which took us to New York to the plane, flew to Cologne, had breakfast in front of the Cathedral and then had a tour of Cologne which included the Rathaus. Inside was a glass window by Professor Meistermann "The Life of the Town" which was a kind of timeline of history. (The girl in the photo was the daughter of someone on the tour) We also saw the foundations of the Roman Pratorium which was underneath it.

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After that I went to the train station and had lunch (some kind of sausage) and took the train down the Rhine to Frankfort where I was to meet my cousin. But we didn't manage to recognize each other, partly because I was described to her as wearing this light blue suit (this photo taken in 1965 but I look pretty much as I did in 1964 - just my children are a year older.)

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and really I was wearing a navy dress. My sister said that my cousin (whom I hadn't seen in over 10 years) was dark, thin and short, and the soldier at the station said she was dirty blonde and my height [5'7"].

Anyway, I got on the train to Paris - had a couchette for overnight. I got on about a half hour before the train was to board.

This part I did not write to my mom. The train was a French train with a French porter. The porter came to my compartment and tried some conversation in broken English with a heavy French accent.

He asked me a question and I thought the question was "Do you want allez?" I knew enough French to know that "allez" in French was "To go", and that question made no sense whatsoever to me. So I was confused, plus hot, tired and a bit jet lagged too I guess.

It did not dawn on me until about three times through him asking me this question, that he was speaking all English, and that he was asking me if I wanted "a lay". I didn't of course and I didn't know how to answer him that wouldn't offend him or get me into more trouble, so I kept on acting like I didn't understand him. Eventually he left in disgust.

In the morning (July 16th) I was in Paris. I went to Notre Dame (climbed the tower), Arc de Triomph and went up the elevator to the top, and then went to the Eiffel Tower and went up as far as the second stage

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before I had to come down and to to the RR station to get the overnight train to Madrid.

This is the point at which I have more photos. After we switched trains at the border (the Spanish trains had a different gauge track), we saw the Atlantic from the train and also communities of tenting vacationers.

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Except for the electric lines which tend to get in the way of pictures from the train, it is very primitive country. All the towns are brightly lighted at night though.

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Town across the inlet from the train

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Pond and mules (?) at sunset from the train

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Stony ground the next day - from a letter to my mother

The sun was coming up, and I inspected myself in the mirror of the WC. I looked like a coal miner. The Spanish use the old fashioned pufferbelly engine.

It is freezing cold. (Well I don't know if it really is.) I have on my raincoat and sweater and all the windows had to be closed because I started to sneeze anyway. Two men were very courtly (in Spanish) about it.

We see shephards and irrigated fields and many electric power lines and castles and horse and donkey drawn carts. It is fairly flat, but rocky and mountains in the distance.

We are now climbing again. This is supposed to be an express, but the Lone Ranger and Silver could catch it easily.


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I saw the Valley of the Fallen (below) and El Escorial (above) from the train. A nice Spanish man was kind enough to alert me each time.

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Now I have arrived in Madrid - Carlos V fountain near my hotel

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“"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”

Comments

  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 21, 2013
    I shopped a little, but didn't have time to buy much. I was in a department store and a man came up and asked me a question (in broken English) and after I said that I didn't know, he asked if my Naval Academy miniature on my right hand was a college ring. (The women here wear their wedding rings on the right hand.) How to explain a miniature? I finally said that it was my husband's college ring, and he backed away fairly smartly. So I conclude he was perhaps trying to pick me up.

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    I spent some time in the Prado while I was waiting for it to be time for lunch


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    Paseo de Prado - July 17, 1964

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    Carlos V Fountain from my hotel window

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    Another view from the hotel window

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    It was 8:45 pm before my sister and I reunited in the lobby. I had given up on her and was coming down to inquire. Her baby (my niece) is a year old

    Fountain at night

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    Saturday July 18th - my niece's crib by the window

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    Traumatic discovery. Today was a National Holiday -- of Spain's independence and nothing "marches". So. We took a city tour this morning.
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    My niece was good and when it came time to go to the Prado, she fell asleep. So since I had been yesterday for several hours by myself before my sister came (the Prado is near our hotel and I was waiting for lunch), I sat with my niece on the bus while my sister went in. Then we went together with the stroller for another hour after the tour until 2 when the Prado museum closed and had a crayfish and a cheese sandwich and a coke at a sidewalk cafe and went to have a nap.

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    We met an English girl who has a puppy while waiting for the tour the morning and she said baby food is sold at the chemists. They have "Lecheria" for milk, stores for canned goods, stores for meat, stores for candy and cheese and stores for fresh veg., and stores for bottled beverages, but since it is a holiday, and then Sunday, only certain chemists are open, and it is too difficult to figure out where those are and to get there. Plaza Mayor from the bus on the tour

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    Balcony for the King and Queen with flags

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    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 21, 2013
    At 5:30 we aroused and packed up again and went to a bullfight. Although I had said I wasn't interested in doing that, it was a holiday and nothing else was open. My sister fed niece dinner there. My niece really liked the bullfight, although she somewhat mistook the bull - pointing and saying "See kitty". She was a great attraction at the bullfight (admiring attention) and has been very good.

    The next day we went to the Prado again, had lunch at Retiro Park, and then packed up and went to the Flea Market

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    My sister's photo of me pushing the stroller

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    We had a tremendous dispute with the baggage man over whether he would check our bags thru to Lisbon. The baggage man tried to tell us to go jump in the lake by making swimming motions!

    We finally went inside to Cooks where the man spoke French, and my sister with her 1/2 German 1/2 French and I managed -- after 10 min. to conclude we had only checked them -- not checked them thru. So we taxied to the hotel, took a promenade and ate at a cafe (my sister thought it was a ghastly tough cured ham sandwich which I insisted was typical) and fed my niece -- ending by spilling everything everywhere -- and left.
    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 21, 2013
    We made it onto the train all right - after frantic last minute search for a lost ticket. We found it, after several more conversations in French.

    We were fascinated by what we saw at dawn. Farmhouses painted in bright fuchsia shades of pinks and greens. Lots of green, trees -- very few to be found in barren Spain. Unfortunately I can't find a good photo of this - this one is all I have.

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    Railway station

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    Our room at Hotel Borges was large, with bath. It looked out on the Rua Garrett, a busy shopping street right in the middle of town. So we could switch off, shopping while my niece napped. The baby's crib is Italian Renaissance

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    looking out the window

    Airshaft of the hotel

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    I wrote my mother

    We both *love* Portugal. It's clean and you'd never guess it were a police state. A combination of San Francisco and Paris. (My mother's note here said: I would like to know what THEY know about San Francisco -- They have been there only in the ova state as far as I can remember!). Steep hills drop right down to the river Tagus. Yellow streetcars. The hill facades are studded with many colored fisherman's houses. French is the second language to the Portuguese and our French is again refreshed. Much brighter than Spain and Madrid -- more prosperous. Many French tourists, but not so many Americans.

    We took a tour of the city (this was the square that we left from). I wrote my mother: We took a very swanky city tour, which was a two-decker bus and had headphones with commentary simultaneously in seven languages. We visited the tower of Belem and the Monsterio do Jeronimos too

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    Our tour bus
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    Belem - me holding my niece

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    Pousada de Dona Maria

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    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 21, 2013
    Monsterio do Jeronimos

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    My sister in the cloisters

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    ferry dock

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    Trolley car

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    Tiled building fronts

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    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 21, 2013
    The next day, we tried to rent a car, but they were all taken so we got a taxi for 340$ escudos for the day (about $12.00) A car with a driver would have cost another $8.00 anyway plus a tip. This way we could both look and take pictures. We went to Queluz (which is a little Versailles and my sister said reminded her of a grandmother's house if your grandmother was a queen)

    Throne room
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    The palace was painted pink outside

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    my niece on the extreme right

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    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • Awais YaqubAwais Yaqub One Inspired soul Posts: 10,565Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 22, 2013
    Thanks for sharing these great memories, always fascinating to see photos shot way before i was even born!

    thanks again
    Thine is the beauty of light; mine is the song of fire. Thy beauty exalts the heart; my song inspires the soul. Allama Iqbal

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  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 22, 2013
    You are welcome - thanks for looking. I stopped half way through the day where we went to Queluz and Sintra because the computer ate the last post. So if I continue, I'll do it in another thread.
    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • joe-bobjoe-bob Major grins Posts: 368Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 26, 2013
    Wow, great pictures, and such good recollection from 50 years ago. I visited Spain 20 years after you did and could only remember a few highlights. Your pictures helped me remember more of my visit there. Thanks.
  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited September 26, 2013
    To help me remember, I have both the letters and postcards that I wrote my mother (which she kept), and the pictures which I logged in a notebook with a notation on them of what each one showed. And sometimes I have to look up about something that I just have in my notes - So it's not JUST memory.

    For instance I have a photo of the hotel where I stayed in Marseille and it is no longer a hotel. But since I had the name of it I could find out a little about it.

    The next part of the trip is here
    http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=241153

    And I am deciding whether to post the next set of photos which go on to Valencia or not. From Valencia, I went to Granada and then back to Madrid - daytrip to Toledo and then eventually to Marseille.
    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
  • saltydogsaltydog Mona Lisa Smile Posts: 350Registered Users Major grins
    edited November 12, 2013
    Wow, thanks for sharing these great photos and memories here. I am guessing you are about the same age as my mom. I was born in Germany in 1967 and up until then, my mom worked for TWA airlines and traveled around quite a bit during the early 60s. You even look similar (especially in the first pic wearing that light blue suit) and many of your photos reminded me of those she had sorted into albums and which I loved to browse when I was a kid (it was always a special treat when my mom pulled those albums out of their locked cabinet). I traveled through Europe quite a bit myself in my late teens and throughout my twenties, but things looked different then. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!
    all that we see or seem
    is but a dream within a dream
    - Edgar Allan Poe

    http://www.saltydogphotography.com
    http://saltydogphotography.blogspot.com
  • grandmaRgrandmaR Major grins Southern Maryland Posts: 1,715Registered Users Major grins
    edited November 12, 2013
    saltydog wrote: »
    Wow, thanks for sharing these great photos and memories here. I am guessing you are about the same age as my mom. I was born in Germany in 1967 and up until then, my mom worked for TWA airlines and traveled around quite a bit during the early 60s. You even look similar (especially in the first pic wearing that light blue suit) and many of your photos reminded me of those she had sorted into albums and which I loved to browse when I was a kid (it was always a special treat when my mom pulled those albums out of their locked cabinet). I traveled through Europe quite a bit myself in my late teens and throughout my twenties, but things looked different then. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

    My niece (the one in the photos) was born in Germany in 1963 when her dad was stationed there. My children were born in 1961, 1963, 1968 and 1971 so I could be about your mother's age - I turned 76 last week.

    I have a bunch of the albums linked up so that you can follow from one to the other, including some my dad took when we went to Europe in 1950.
    “"..an adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered." G.K. Chesterton”
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