Sunday, April 17, 2005

It's a drizzling European Sunday morning

Seriously, where is spring this year?

I am in a cybercafe in the basement of a "Cyber Hotel" in the middle of Strasbourg, that apparently has a PC in every room. I don't actually need that - I brought my own PC - but the wireless would have been nice. Instead I stayed in a more mundane hotel. But c'est la vie (as they say here). As it is, I come here to use the basement cybercafe. I am sure I would have the software build on this PC the way I like it within three or four days if I was staying longer. (Well, other than that it running Windows 98SE on a really slow processor. It's kind of a shame, as the computer has a nice TFT display - it's just the computer itself needs replacing).

Anyway, although Germany is just across the river one wouldn't know it. This is a French city. I have heard more English spoken than German, and the hotel TV only had French channels plus CNN in English. But, there was one exception. At my guidebook's suggestion, I went to a brew pub named Les Trois Brasseurs which was full of people both in the bar upstairs and the cellar downstairs where there was live music. The beer was much better than is typical in France, and this I think may have been influenced by the proximity to Germany. I started talking to a group of Americans, who turned out to be interior decorators from Malibu who were doing work for some extremely rich person over here. They were with some three or four locals with who they were working, and who had brought them to this pub. I had a very pleasant hour or two in conversation, and then something amazing happened. As we were about to pay up and leave, the barman brought us a last round on the house. Whether this was because the French people in the party knew him or were regulars or what I do not know, but I have to say this was awfully nice. It was a good evening.

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