Leaving Houston was luckily fairly drama-free, except that I could not find my pocket knife; can survive without it on the trip, but will miss it. Viswa Subbaraman gave us a ride to the airport in Anne’s Tahoe, and we had an uneventful but sleepless flight into Frankfurt. Our first order of business was to find a phone store to get a German SIM card for my iPhone. There was one in Hall A, and they were extremely helpful in getting us going with blau.de. Our stuff was waiting for us in the oversize baggage claim: we used moving boxes instead of proper luggage so that we wouldn’t have to tote them clear across Europe with us. Putting the bikes together didn’t take too long, and we just stuffed our things into the panniers willy-nilly, figuring we’d need to rebalance once we got to Donaeschingen. There was a bike bath from Terminal 2 to the center of town, leading us right to the train station. Our trip down was to have taken four hours, with changes in Heidelberg and Karlsruhe, but our first train was delayed by 10 minutes, making us miss the first connection. There was another train just half an hour later, but had to cool our heels in Karlsruhe for about an hour and a half; this worked out well, since we were able to get online for a bit. We finally got into Donaueschingen about 8:30, and biked up to our hotel just outside of town as it started to get dark. We had a nice dinner and then immediately crashed, not getting to enjoy the cigars that Mitchell Orchant had sent…guess we’ll save for Vienna when we know we’ll have time.