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Sharing My European Trip

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I just returned from my first trip to Europe and it was amazing! I went with my parents, sister and our husbands for a cruise on the Rhine river. The trip started in Basel, Switzerland, went thru Germany and France (the Rhine is the border between those countries for a long stretch), and ended in Amsterdam. I thought of you and my other patients often during the trip as I saw differences in foods and environmental toxins between the US and Europe that impact our health. I hope you enjoy my sharing this experience with you!

Here we are in Atlanta, about to start the big adventure!

This is the first of MANY cathedrals we saw. Each town we passed by had a huge church at its center. This one in Basel was the only one with a donation machine, lol! (This building is not used as a church any more, but serves as a community center. Still looked funny to see the machine there!)


Our hotel in Basel was quite the sight! It was attached to a casino. Pretty cool by night, but a bit harsh to confront first thing in the morning as you step out of the elevator to get a cup of coffee! Check out the bottom row of the vending machine. ;-)


On our first night on the ship, we enjoyed an intimate seating at the Chef's table, where we enjoyed a 7 course meal. It sounds like "gorge city", but each course was small and beautifully presented.


The next morning we woke up to swans right outside our balcony, just like a fairy tale! They are abundant all along the river. 


Much of the architecture in Germany and France was built before our country was settled. So much attention to beauty of the structures and the grounds!


 
 
 
 
 
We were in France the day before the election and there was a pretty heavy police and military presence. 


More beauty!


 
The French pastries were incredible! This shop was laid out like a jewelry store.


And look at the presentation of our coffee and tart. (Not a bad pic of my sis and brother-in-law either!)


Side note- I must be gluten free, due to an auto-immune thyroid condition. The speculation about the rise in gluten sensitivity in the US is that it is due to the use of Round Up weed killer on our wheat crops just before harvest, which weakens the plants and makes harvest easier. I cannot "cheat" on gluten or my energy tanks and I start to lose hair, both signs of thyroid trouble. I knew that the wheat in Europe is not sprayed, so I cautiously tried eating it. I'm happy to report that even though I ate gluten every day for 14 days (often twice a day!), I had not one thyroid symptom, nor did I gain one pound on the trip! This might not be the case for those with celiac disease, but it is my experience over my 27 years in this field that people who are gluten intolerant can eat the wheat in Europe without consequence. Adding another dimension of pleasure to the trip for sure!


One stretch of the Rhine has castle after castle. These were built to collect tolls from the ships who wanted to pass. Hard to believe these massive structures were built in the 15th and 16th century!


 
 
I loved how the pharmacies carried lots of homeopathy! This pharmacist was so kind to pose with me.


 
 
Cologne was very moving, as the whole town was reduced to rubble in WWII, except the cathedral.


 


The cathedral as it looks today.


 

Despite the light rain that fell for a while on most days, we all fell in love with Amsterdam!


 

And the biggest difference between Amsterdam and Atlanta? Parking lots!



























Thanks so much for letting me share! I'd love to hear about your experiences, too!

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