Saturday December 18th 2010
Strasbourg Train Station
5 Degrees (inside)
I have spent nearly 12 hours on the train today and I still have more to come.
Up at 5:00 am today, I woke up nice and early because I know that when you’re leaving on a trip, there is always stuff that needs to be done in the morning.
So far, the only thing that I regret not packing are my mukluks. Don’t worry, the footwear I have is definitely suitable, I just want my mukluks.
|room in Offenburg. Yes, I have grown|
On this trip we passed a nuclear power plant. It was the first time I’ve ever seen one. Apart from TV and what not. I can’t believe how close people live to them! There is no way I could handle living near one. Every time I would hear a loud boom in the night I would have to wake up (scurry to unplug all my appliances because I am afraid of being electrocuted) and look out the window to make sure the reactors did not explode. So stressful.
I thought of something odd on the train: is baby garble universal? You know how if you put two babies together they seem to chat? Well, if you put a French baby and an English baby together, would they be able to chat?
|not so tall anymore.|
Pretty much as soon as I arrived in Lyon, I hoped on the next train to Strasbourg. I was almost two hours ahead of my itinerary, which is weird, because I still arrived at the same time...
Some of the stops we stopped for a very long time. A very long time. All I could think of was that Dementors were taking over the train like in Harry Potter (it’s a good thing I was not a little kid when the movie came out otherwise I probably would have had nightmares..) Next thing I know there are people handing out boxes of food to everyone. I thought it was awesome. Free food. There was one set of wooden cutlery, a pack of almonds, hazelnuts and raisins, three little toasty buns, a package of Walker’s pure butter shortbread (SO GOOD!), organic apple puree, tomato and herb cream cheese-like spread, one tin of tuna salad, some taboule salad, 50 cL water, a wet nap and a package of mints that I thought were salts so didn’t eat them for a really long time. Time passed and we never moved. Then they told everyone from, cars 17 to 19 to go into the last four cars because our cars no longer had any heat.
|random church I found|
There was the nearly elderly woman always on her cell phone, obviously bossing around her family for who is to bring what for Christmas dinner. Trust me, she was bossy. There were two couples; the joyful couple chatting away and being friendly, and the other couple who were quite the opposite. Then there was the woman with the toddler (enough said) and some guy who I think passed out, doubled over, in the corner for the whole duration of the ride. I was afraid he had died. And well, you know me.
It was a decent ride. Not too hot, not too cold. And I arrived in time. Excellent.
Train stations are very exciting. And maybe even more luxurious than an airport. The main things that is cool is to watch the area in front of the departure boards. As the departure time approaches, more and more people assemble, then the moment that the platform is posted everyone disappears in a mad scramble. I love it. We’re like ants.
That is all I have to report for tonight. So far. 19:03
The ride to Offenburg was quick, half an hour or so. The train was packed. I was surprised that nobody asked for my passport. In fact, other than when I boarded in Marseille, the conductor never checked to see if I had a ticket.
The person I sat next to knew barely enough English to reassure me when I needed to get off. Unsurprisingly, he got off in a small town.
This is the one night I am in a hotel. My room is pretty nice. Two beds, a bathroom (with a shower!! I have missed showers so much!), a wardrobe, a desk and a TV. Oh, and a mini bar. I am five minutes from the station and have the friendliest stereotypical old man working the desk, who, in perfect English, told me I should check out the Christmas Market tonight.
So I did just that. I walked around looking at the stalls while sipping some hot drink that is kind of like wossil. I forget what the girl called it, but she assured me it would be really tasty. I found a mini Christmas light, water and nativity scene in some gardens. It was absolutely gorgeous.
The whole town is gorgeous. All the Christmas lights! And snow!! It feels so good to walk on snow. There are mini Christmas trees on the streets and the HUGEST tree I have ever seen right in the middle of one of them.
|first taste of German architecture|
I could stay here for a lot longer than one night…
I guess I will have to come back! 22:53