After a few miles, the detour signs led us back to the river, only to point us uphill again around another flooded stretch of the shore road.
Thinking that the road on the opposite bank might be better, we took a ferry across to Lorch.
battle it was, this small boat against the swift current. The ferry crossing was closed later that day.
In the morning we walked across the deserted highway strung with red and white Hoch Wasser (High Water) streamers and saw where the stairs come up from the tunnel . . .
Doubtless that outer railing lines the river walk.
It was worth every tire-squealing turn to visit this hushed and holy place with its black-robed nuns and great deep-toned bells we could hear long before we could see the twin steeples.
(We're never far from our traveling companion, Louis XIV. We met him in Heidelberg, which he pretty much destroyed in an effort to annex it, and we spotted him even here at this most-German site. A signboard displays a reproduction of a painting of Kaiser Wilhelm in 1871 crowning himself as German Emperor amid a throng of much-medalled officers. The place isn't identified, but it's unmistakably Louis' Hall of Mirrors at Versailles.)
"There's one right here," he said, pointing to this unpromising alley.
We feel sorry for all the out of work bargemen and all the people who planned boat trips -- and just a little guilty at sitting here on our balcony with the window boxes of pink geraniums, delighting in this river in all its moods.