Scenery at the town of Uelzen, Germany .
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Hamburg, Germany.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? North to Denmark!

Saturday, May 7, 2022

Why do they make it so complicated...

One of the many reasons we want to get resident status in Europe is so that we aren't having to play "the Schengen shuffle". The Schengen visa area in Europe encompasses most European Union (EU) countries as well as some non EU countries. It means that we can only spend 90 days out of any rolling 180 day period in those Schengen countries.

So it takes some advance planning.

Once we cross into Hungary, we will be in the Schengen zone. And we will be in the zone until we fly to Canada on August 5th. So if we count back from that date, May 8th in when we can enter the zone and still be within the rules. And you have to include the day you enter and the day you leave as part of the 90 days.

Then we will arrive back in Amsterdam September 11th. If we cross into Hungary May 14th, we would only be able to stay for 6 days. The plan is to get a Spanish visa and we would use those 6 days to drive to Spain. If we do not get the visa, we will probably fly directly to the UK for a few weeks because we wouldn't get our full 90 days back until November 4th. 

Why do they make it so complicated?! But, that's the way it is.

Yesterday, Valentina drove us all to a trailhead a few miles away where we could do another hike to a waterfall.

There are lots of these big snails around.

Stairway to nowhere.

Green moss.

Following the stream.

Lots of little waterfalls along the way.

Fire salamander.

Nice walk in the forest.

Cascada Sterminos.


Kevin and Ruth.

We are moving on today. We've had a fun few days with Valentina, and we know that we need to come back to this area in the summer when we can do some higher hiking. Apparently there is a trail that takes you along the upper ridgeline that is absolutely beautiful. 

Heading for another beautiful hiking area today!

Nice price drop on Blink Outdoor Smart Security Cameras.

And in Canada...


  1. You have inspired us to visit Romania and will do so in the autumn. Glad you are having such a nice time and fabulous landscapes. We have the same Schengen shuffle and have to be aware all the time of dates. What I'm wondering, by getting resident status in a Schengen zoned country, for example, Malta, Spain or Portugal, does that eliminate the Schengen shuffle to all the Schengen zone?

    1. Getting residency in a Schengen country does not (from my understanding) entitle you to free reign in all Schengen countries. It is expected that you will spend the majority of your time in the country that has granted you residency status. However we all know that there is no control between countries so I would think that the only thing that could cause you a problem is if you have residency in one particular country, but exit and enter the zone through countries other than your residence country.

  2. How did you know the name of the salamander? Do you study flora and fauna info before each new country, have an info book with you, use Google, or are just naturally brilliant :)?

    Again, gorgeous nature pictures. Do you use your phone camera or have a separate camera with you? I'd imagine you would fill up all of the space on whichever device you use to take pics. You must have thousands and thousands by now. If you have time, could you explain the process you use to store and keep track of all of your photographs and videos. Thanks.

    1. We have seen this salamander a number of times over the last year so we knew the name but yes, we look things up on the internet to find out what the name is when we are interested in knowing. We do this with flowers, birds, snakes, and such.

      Glad that you are enjoying our pictures. We use both our the camera on our phone and our separate bigger camera which has a great zoom on it. We never keep the pictures we take on either camera, when Kevin goes to write the blog, he downloads the pictures to his computer and then deletes from from both cameras. After doing that he goes through all the pictures from the day and whittles them down to keep only the best ones, or ones that he thinks help tell a story when he writes the blog. Later I take a copy of those pictures and download them to my computer where I work on labelling them and I then normally whittle them down a tiny bit more. Our photos are all in chronological order and we keep them in our picture file on the computers in folders for each each year, and each year has folders for each month and each month has folders for each day. and the photos are tagged as to what country or special event along with other tags. We also keep a copy of the pictures on an external hard drive just in case something happens to our computers this way we always have an extra copy somewhere so that we don't lose all our photos. To give you and idea on the number of photos that we keep per year, last years photos numbered 5857 and there are still a few than need to whittled down further because I haven't labelled them all. In our earlier years we took less pictures then now so there aren't so many from back then.

    2. Thanks for the detailed explanation about your photos. My reaction after reading it was "wow, oh wow, oh wow." You two have really got the process down to a science. SInce your blog is for you to keep a record of your travels as well as for others to enjoy, it makes sense to have such a clear plan to take, publish, whittle, categorize in a detailed manner, and finally save on several platforms. You've got it all covered!

    3. I like being able to find pictures with ease when I am looking for something and we don't want to keep pictures that aren't any good, that just takes up space on our computers. This system works well for us but I am sure other people have a system that works for them.


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