I stood with my fellow passengers on the sundeck watching A-ROSA Silva bring us closer and closer to Cologne. The anticipation of seeing a new place was palpable. Cameras were snapping as one cityscape after another revealed itself to us. Finally, the Cologne Cathedral came into view. More cameras snapping. The captain steered A-ROSA Silva toward the bank, securing a dock that would put us within walking distance of the cathedral and the city center.
I realize I write a great deal about the active experiences on A-ROSA (see Assessing A-ROSA Stella: 9 Differentiating Factors That Would Make Me Cruise Again). Perhaps it is because my nature, as is the nature of many others, is in motion. I enjoy exploring and seeing, and most of all, moving. A long brisk walk or a vigorous bike ride is invigorating enough at home, but when abroad these activities take on an added dimension of pleasure. Every footstep, every revolution of the pedals, has the potential to present the unexpected — something other than what we’re accustomed to back home.
Today on my ride, I cycled down beautiful avenues of trees lining each side of paved paths for the exclusive use of pedestrians and bicycles. I envy Europeans for living in places that provide spaces for those of us who prefer to use our legs to propel us rather than fossil fuels.
There is a whole other city outside the cathedral area that I discovered while pedaling, however. That’s where people live and work, where kids play and where the grit of life takes place. I love experiencing all of it.
There is something we both share, however, and that is indelible images that will be with us until our final breaths on this planet — this lovely, lovely planet, with all of its good people — all waiting for folks like you and me to put ourselves in motion and explore.