Saturday, 23 August 2008

20 Years On - Part 2 of Account of Travelling by Train Around West Germany and Austria

My first full day in West Germany and I managed to lose my hat. Years later I remembered I had untied it from my rucksack (I had gone for a dark blue metal framed one which was old fashioned even in 1988) when I stopped by a picnic table outside the youth hostel to take a photo of the hostel. It had come from the Perigord region of South-West France and was the style farmers wore there, similar to Australian military hats. I wonder what happened to it. I was to miss it in the sunnier days to come. A 'gyros' is a German equivalent of a doner kebab in Britain.

The picture of a tram stop might seem strange but in 1988 there were no serious tram services in the UK at all, only holiday ride ones, so seeing something like a tram station in the middle of the streets was rare for a Briton.

Tuesday 23rd August 1988
I woke up about 07.00, had breakfast then walked with Ian into town. We looked at the Rathaus and the Cathedral and walked around town before going onto the station. I went back to the hostel as I had lost my hat, but in vain. I caught the bus back to the station then the train to Köln-Deutz and quickly found the large hostel. I watched some television. This evening I wandered into town and was very impressed, there are numerous trendy art and bookshops; the cathedral is stunning. I went to an eight screen cinema and saw "Crocodile Dundee II" which was quite good. I had another gyros and a litre of beer. I met Steve and Dave, two English from the youth hostel, we walked around town and had a drink then came home. The reception here was similar, though the German people are very friendly at the [youth hostel] Reception they are cool and intolerant to people's attempts at German. They are warm to other Germans.

Weather: Sunny and warm.
Aachen Market, August 1988

Statues in Aachen, August 1988

Tram Stop in Deutz Area of Köln

Köln Cathedral Seen from East Bank of the Rhine, August 1988

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