Thursday, 28 August 2008

20 Years On - Part 7 of Account of Travelling by Train Around West Germany and Austria

It is interesting how I refer in this entry to my 'day off' and I think the fact that I treated the trip like a job or perhaps like those coach tours, 'It's Tuesday so it must be Munich' added to my sense of stress. Though as I note here, some inter-railers felt a need to keep moving, having 'been there, done that'. I certainly covered a lot of the sights of each town, to some extent, as noted before, to pass the time as well as out of interest. Sundays are the worst as so much is closed, though I was to find that in West Germany museums would often be open that day and people would visit them after attending church. I went to a much larger cinema and as noted here, was the only person at that screen and they ran the whole movie just for me. I had seen 'The Unbearable Lightness of Being' in London some months before with a very pretentious friend who had forgotten his glasses (he was vain too) and so we had to sit on the very front row so that he could see it; finding it tedious I had slept through most of it.

I also remember trying to set off from the youth hostel in the morning and finding it impossible to find a road that took me out of the residential area towards the centre of town and having wandered around in circles along these roads, I finally gave up and went and did what most of the people at the youth hostel did and took the bus. In the evening walking back to the youth hostel I meant three French also staying there. I spoke to them in French but they told me not to bother, they felt there was no point as they knew they could speak English better. At the youth hostel it turned out they could not speak German and this proved difficult when they too tried to find the promised laundry facilities which did not exist and consulted with the youth hostel staff but refused to let me translate what the staff member was saying to them only in German either into English or French.

Nordsee, literally 'North Sea' in English is a German fast food chain which sells fish-based food which is very good. My taste in movies was clearly not to a high standard in those days, though I guess if you are trying to follow a movie in a foreign language ('Rambo III' was dubbed into German for the English-speaking characters) it is best to stick to one with monosyllabic dialogue.


Sunday 28th August 1988
Today is my day off, though I thought it might be boring, I am glad of the rest especially as the weather is so much better today. Mark & Helen could not understand why I would want to stay in a town which I had already been to and seen all the sights of. Anyway I woke up and took the bus part of the way and walked the rest into town, then walked up a different route to the castle. I finished the postcards to Elizabeth and home which I started in Mainz, having already written to Edward and Bob & Denise from Koblenz. I also wrote to Alan, the two Davids, Jason, Rodrigo and Mark F. I then walked back down and had some delicious tea and cakes in an expensive cafe sitting out on the pedestrianized Hauptstra├če. I then went straight to lunch and had a Turkish pizza. I then sat waiting for the cinema in Hauptstra├če.

I went to see "The Unbearable Lightness of Being" which I understood most of having seen it before, I obviously slept through far less than I thought. I enjoyed it more than last time, I almost think it is better auf Deutsch. Oh yes, I was the only person in that cinema. Then I wandered around and had an ice cream - today must have been quite expensive but probably the best day so far.

I checked on my camera and found that it was on ASA1600 and so I rushed around retaking shots of the castle. One lighting streak branched touching both sides of the valley. I then went back into the town and decided to watch 'Rambo III' as the German would be easier. I ate at a Nordsee. Despite being fast food they are solely German. I keep having to balance up between spending lots because I am on holiday and saving so I can stay longer, though I have been here a week. Economise for a couple of days. "Rambo III" was not bad, I thought it was funny when they had subtitles in German for the characters speaking in Russian. Then I came home through the university campus.

Weather: Sunny, a couple of thunderstorms (great lightning), warm.
Views across Heidelberg, August 1988

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