Luxembourg

First let me start with the positive. It was great seeing two of our friends in Cologne were we flew into. We had some good sharing time. We are thankful that they picked us up at the airport and arranging the train tickets to Luxembourg. That was quite a savings over buying them online. Randolf found a special and saved us over 236 Euros.

We did not want to spend the night with them, since they had other plans. We booked a gay B and B through the same agency that books for us. It was convenient and not expensive. We left there the next morning and took the tram, which was conveniently around the corner, to the train station. We picked up a delicious chicken dinner at the station for very little money and took it on the train. The train ride was nice, but only scenic in short spurts. We remembered Koblenz and our time there with with Randolf on a different trip to Cologne. We have heard that Treier is fabulous and we have that on our list of places to see now. We passed through it on our way.

Now the negative:
Again, we booked a B and B through out booking agency. In Luxembourg, we found our bus to the B and B. We had bought our tickets. The bus which we were told would take 20 minutes, took 50 minutes to our stop. After we got off of the bus in the middle of NOwhere, we had to walk another 15 minutes to the house. It is way out in the country with nothing around, but a small church, a little restaurant, a few houses, and two ponies in the field grazing. This was not a good sign.

As you enter the building, there was a small hallway. You walk into the living room, then the kitchen is on the next floor. The third floor is the owners bedroom and bath. Then the guest room was what was probably once and
attic. In Philadelphia, this is called a Trinity house, one room above another, but only three. The stairs to the guest room were like your stairs to your loft bed, left, right, left, etc. However, these were curved in a semi-circle and there was a banister on one side only. The room was nice, but the bed was small. There was a skylight with no shade for morning light. There was no door for privacy on the room and nothing to cut the sound from downstairs.

First we were really upset that they told us 20 minutes to Luxembourg City, but it was 50. Then they told us they do not allow smoking in the house. They then asked that we take our shoes off at the door and put them in the closet. We dumped our luggage and then we wanted to head back to the bus to see the city. We were informed that they bus only runs once an hour and stops coming back at 7:15 pm. By now, it was 6:00 pm and if we took the bus
to the city, we would have to come right back on the next bus or be stranded in the city. The other option was the Night Bus,which only runs on Friday and Saturday nights. This bus, though, does not start until 12:10 in the
morning and only runs once an hour. We opted to take the last bus to the city and hang out there until 12:10 in the morning to see something or the whole rest of the day would be shot.

We took the bus to the city, but they did not tell us that everything closes at 6:00 pm. All restaurants, stores, museums, EVERYTHING downtown closes. So now what the hell do we do until midnight and it is freezing cold out? We asked some young women and they suggested a movie. We took a bus to the edge of town.

We had dinner at the Coyote Cafe, since there were limited choices in restaurants and we had hours to kill before the movie. We went to see “The Closer” a good, but bizarre movie with Jude Law and Julia Roberts. 15 EUROS for the two of us. Holy cow!!!

We still had an hour to kill before the bus, so we just hung out in the lobby. We did not get back to the B and B until after 1:00 am. When we walked in, the owners had a movie going. They rigged their TV to a projector and had a full wall sized screen that pulls down from the ceiling. The movie is projected onto it. The sound system must be awesome since the sofa was vibrating. They were watching some action movie with lots of LOUD action of guns, waterfalls, etc. When we went up to the bedroom, they still had not turned down the volume. Because of the layout of the house, there was nothing to block the noise. The movie went on until after 2 am.

The next morning, Saturday, we took the bus to the city and planned for a long day. We knew we would not return until the night bus at 12:10 the earliest. We went back to the movie theater and bought tickets for the 9:30 showing of “The Aviator”. We then went back downtown. We walked all around the city and looked at the sites. To try to stay warm and waste time, we went into the only two department stores there were. At 5:30 pm, we went to a restaurant and planned on an early dinner. The restaurant stopped serving food at 5:00, so we could just get a beer. When we left there, nothing was open anywhere. We walked around some more and then took the bus to the theater.

The plan was to go to the Au Chan next to the theaters, thinking that in Hungary, they are open 24 hours. Being a hyper-market, we could look around and kill some time. When we got there, it was closed. All of the stores in the little mall were closed. We went back to the theater and had a ‘relaxed’ dinner at another chain restaurant to kill time until the 9:30 movie. We left there at 8:30 and sat in the movie lobby for an hour, before we could get into the theater itself. The movie was over 2 1/2 hours, so we missed the 12:10 bus and had to wait for the 1:10 bus. We got back after 2:00 am. Again, they were playing movies and the sound was rocking the house.

Sunday morning, we were planning our get away early, since there was no night bus on Sunday. We would have to return by 7:00 pm or so we thought. As we were walking out the door, one of the guys said to us, “You know there are no buses at all on Sunday?” A duh, how would we know this? So we were stuck there all day. They offered to drive us to the city, but told us there is nothing at all open on Sunday, except the churches. The museums are closed. We would have had to take a train to another town from the city and they would pick us up after they did what they were off to do. We said, thanks, but no thanks. The dilemma was that there were no options for food. They had not prepared us or we would have bought some things for Sunday dinner/snacks. We went for a walk and across from the bus stop is a little restaurant and cafe. It was open, so we went there to get angry and vent. This is when I sent you the SMS. We thought, great, we will eat here. Nope! They close at 2:00 and did not serve food on Sunday. We went back to the room and read. Ron had brought a jar of peanut butter, so we ate that.

Before the couple left for their outing, they had this delicious smelling chicken dinner. Just make us feel worse, why don’t you? When they returned, we asked them if there were any options for food. They said there were not, but did invite us for a salad with them. It was nice and we had a good talk, but I had to keep from telling them how much I hated where they were located, the number of things we should have been told in advance, and their lack of respest with the noise from the movies at night. We spent a long evening reading and Ron trying to get the CNN sound and picture at the same time.

We were more than happy to take the early bus at 7:12 am to the train station for our 8:32 train to Cologne. We had breakfast at the station and bought sandwiches for the train ride. When we got to the station, I was looking for the airport bus that I had taken in June last year, but was told there is a train. For 2 Euros, we took the train directly to the airport. That was very convenient. We had two hours to wait there and hopped our flight home.

When we returned there was a snow blizzard going on. Quite surprising. Our first real snow this winter. Today is it almost all gone though. After we got home, I ran off to my last Spanish class of this semester. I register today for the next one.

So Luxembourg is now off of our list of places to go to. It really is a pretty little city and country, but not worth more than a day and a half.

Ryan