The various Volvo dealers were keen to assist but none of them had a new alternator in stock and suggested that 2-3 days would be required to get a replacement, hardly useful in the circumstances. In the end we agreed to buy a rather expensive battery from Volvo and take our chances on the autobahn through Germany.
Another short detour and we acquired a battery charger and a small socket to extract the existing battery so a complete failure would not leave us stranded..
As it transpired this was a good decision. The car ran on despite what turned into pouring rain and having to have the wipers on pretty much the whole time. We changed the battery over to the new one at lunchtime and carried on without hitch. Of course the windows could not be opened (electric) and we had to minimise everything else.
The Diplomat hotel is another large essentially featureless business hotel but well located by the metro as well as well appointed and clean. We had no problem either finding it or getting set up with the battery charging in the room.
We also found the Street Safari pub in the centre of town without incident and were just in time to see the Czeck Wrecks make the evening prime time news here. The police looked less than amused! Seems quite a few of the worse wrecks were turned away at the boarder and had to try quite a few crossings to get into the country.
Our faithful staff were of course very late arriving at the rendezvous to assess the days challenge (photographing Trabant cars, we found one on the way from the hotel to the metro but we were not really trying very hard). Knowing we had no chance of winning this caused us no concern and we headed off to find a dinner venue offering better than steak and chips.
All around a very satisfactory end to a very satisfactory trip. All that remains to o is to work out how to get the Volvo home!