Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Travelogue 3

October 17, 2010

Best of Europe (so far):   BERLIN!  Deutsche Bahn (Germany´s amazing train system)

Biggest bore:    Lyon, France (and this despite the fabulous clothing, great food and wine)

Best place for a coffee:   Plaza Mayor in Madrid being surrounded by acrobats, artists,  young people, old people, kids, musicians, and street performers of all stripes.

Saddest thing:  the tattered, forlorn, impoverished street people being used as directional and advertising signage on the streets of Prague.

Unsure thing:  the wisdom of joining a tour.  We are, for the next 15 days on a Trafalgar tour.  Am trying to stay positive but think we made a major error cause most of the time seems to be spent on the bus and in cafeterias.  The average age of our fellow travellers is much older than expected and the average weight seems to much higher than is healthy.  I only mention the weight thing because I was in an elevator that would not move and instead triggered an alarm.  This brought a harried looking maintenance person who removed 3 people before hitting the up button.

It was scary to think that the capacity posted was twice the number of people in the elevator,  and it would not go up.

And there are so many rules.  We must wear name badges, we must keep our headsets clean, we must not forget them, we must wear seat belts all the time, we can only use the washroom if it is an emergency, we must not be late or the other passengers in the bus will hate us, we should not ask the tour guide to help us with phone cards - better to use phone booths, we cannot stop and linger anywhere, we cannot eat ice cream in the bus, we must not wear shorts,  we must not........

I must not be judgemental. I must hold my tongue. I must not make sarcastic jokes.  I must be a nice person. I will not give anyone a dirty look for sneaking ice cream on to the bus.  I will not compensate by drinking Cava all day.   I will smile at everyone.

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