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It rained on Saturday. There was a relentless drizzle, occasionally heavier, that did a much better job of making us wet and uncomfortable than the sudden downpours on Friday. It was too warm for full waterproofs, but I did put shoe covers on which made a difference for me. We decided to ride on through and wait for it to brighten up, so we pedalled soggily across the border into Germany and, sure enough, the rain stopped and we started to dry out. Then the rain started again. The forecast said it would be on and off all day, so we admitted defeat and headed for a station.

The first station we tried at Bunde appeared to be on some kind of branch line and the only option was trains back to Groningen. A quick check on the DeutscheBahn app offered us the option of travelling from Bunde to Bremen – but on five different trains taking six and a half hours, and with changes at places including Utrecht and Osnabrück! We set off again and cycled another 12km or so to Leer, which is on the mainline, and got a direct train to Bremen in one hour and twenty minutes.

Not so many photos as somehow photography in the rain seemed less appealing. The views when we crossed the river Ems on the way into Leer were striking, and it was not raining at that point, but there was no good place to stop on the cycle path across the bridge.

Bremen itself has been fun. The old town has beautiful buildings and narrow, cobbled streets to explore, plus the statue of the Bremen Stadtmusikanten from the fairy tale. There is a lovely promenade along the Weser. The Wallanlegen Park is built on the site of the old city ramparts and is very peaceful, even though right in the city centre. It also has a windmill!

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Plenty of vegan food options for Bruce. We went in search of one highly reviewed and fully vegan restaurant (Vengo), only to find it closing earlier than expected – but although their kitchen was closed, they had two portions of what turned out to be a delicious vegetable curry left, and some excellent chocolate nut (‘Snickers’) cake. On Sunday night we dined at Rock & Wurst, which had a vegan burger option as well as plenty of choice for the carnivore. Both places had lots of character and very friendly staff.

Will be sorry to leave Bremen, but we have more places to see. My back was tight on Saturday but seems much easier after a day of walking and more stretches. All well otherwise, apart from a collection of very itchy insect bites. I knew I should not have ditched the insect repellant from my packing list.

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