Monday, June 25, 2012

Rotel at Safeway: Redux

Taking a break from relaxing yesterday (Sunday) afternoon, I looked out my living room window and spotted a bright red "object" in the Safeway parking lot. So I got my binoculars and was gobsmacked to see a Rotel tour bus!

"Das Rollende Hotel" is precisely that. A fully self-contained tour bus manufactured by VanHool, a world-class motor vehicle and rail based transportation entity, based in Belgium.

The Rotel vehicle is based on the VanHool T916 "Acron."

This vehicle carries 24 passengers - with 26 sleeping compartments in the rear of the vehicle. (A compartment for the driver and the Tour Guide.)

I chatted briefly with a very pleasant Tour Guide, Martina. She explained they were on the reverse of the Vancouver BC / San Francisco schedule, heading for San Francisco.

While Port Townsend is not on their official itinerary for the West Coast tour, they took the ferry across Admiralty Inlet from Keystone (Coupeville) to Port Townsend.

And Safeway is on the highway a half mile from the Port Townsend Washington State ferry dock, presenting an irresistible opportunity to load up on goodies.

Rotel runs tours world wide, catering basically to German and European tourists. In fact, it is a chore to gather information, as their web site requires use of a translation service, such as Bable Fish. However,  Bable Fish has been taken over by Microsoft. And to no ones surprise, Microsoft's Bing Translator managed to mangle the once user friendly Bablefish.

In the Blog title appears the word "Redux." Redux has several meanings, including the revisiting of a subject. This is my second encounter with Rotel, the first being many years ago at Crater Lake Oregon, where wife number one and I explored on our honeymoon in 1966!
Typical Sleeping Compartment

I advised Martina that I planned to feature their visit to Port Townsend on my Blog. I hope the passengers will be amused to learn that their shopping trip in Port Townsend Safeway has been recorded for the ages …

1 Comments - Click here:

Andy Rezsnyak said...

I saw one of these 2 years ago in grocery store parking lot in Syracuse NY. I was, along with everyone in the parking lot, was confused on what this was.

Well, I didn't just want to wonder, so I waited for the driver to come up to the bus with about 3 or 4 shopping carts full of groceries, and asked what the story was behind this funny shaped bus. He told me that they were a German tourist group that was driving, with no real route planned, from Toronto Canada to Miami Florida, and the next stop was New York City about 5 hours away.

I told him that just around the corner was a market that was much larger and would have a better selection of fresh produce and baked goods. He told me that he liked going to smaller stores so that it was easier to get his group out of them and back on the road.

I snapped a few shots of the bus, which was a Mercedes, and wished them well.

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