Friday, July 09, 2004

Tourist got lost following 1914 guide book

What a weird story:
An elderly American tourist had to be rescued in Germany after he got lost while using a 90-year-old guide book.

Hank Edwards, 79, ended up stuck in a German forest for two days after finding his way with a book bought by his father in 1914.

Throughout the years he kept the book, practising the German words and studying the places mentioned in the copy of Beautiful Bayreuth.

When he was finally able to make the trip, he got lost trying to find attractions that had long since disappeared.

The alarm was raised when he failed to return to his hotel and he was eventually found by local rescuers sitting in his car that was stuck in mud on a dirt track.

"He told us he had read it over and over as a boy and had always wanted to visit the places listed in it," said a police spokesman in Bad Berneck.

"But owing to the Great Depression and the war and raising a family and working all his life, he said he never got around to actually travelling abroad until now."

The officer added that unfortunately, two world wars and a massive reforestation programme in the region meant most of the Bayreuth in the book no longer existed.

But he added: "It's still very beautiful here even if it's not what he expected."

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