Girls day out

Trip Start Mar 29, 2006
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Trip End Feb 28, 2007


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Flag of Switzerland  ,
Wednesday, September 20, 2006

WEDNESDAY, 20th September
 
This was my home alone day while Anne and L had a girl's day out  in Konstance. I drove them to the station at Radolfzell where they caught an express train to Konstance. Ten minutes at the speed of sound they reckoned.
 
According to Anne they went to the tourist information office first to acquire a map of the city and walked out with one that had a walking tour marked on it. They followed the dotted line (on the map) which took them through the medieval old town, in which some of the houses dated back to the twelfth century. You could see the difference between the newly renovated buildings and the ones that had not changed for centuries. St Steven's church was another in the baroque style but not a patch on the Abbeys we had been in recently.
 
They exited the medieval gate at the northern end, bought some bread rolls and caught the ferry to Meersburg. They stayed on deck in the sun for the 30 minute journey. They only did the lower part of town. They looked in all the shops and buildings. The puppet man was back so Lyn caught this act at last. They caught the ferry back and had a hot drink each...inside, out of the wind. They rang me from the station after having determined the time of the train which this time was an all stops job...a crowded commuter train.
 
While they were out I played. I spread myself out around the house with computer on the dining room, CD playing on the DVD player and newspaper and book in the conservatory or winter room as it is called.
 
I am tempted to describe the house again but there is not a lot to say. We spent a lot of time in the winter room which faces the back garden off the ground floor living area. It was enclosed completely in glass and during the first two weeks it was very hot at times so all the doors were opened. Doors that swung both ways. You have to be there to experience a door that swings, albeit only a few centimetres, vertically. My computer was set up on a glass topped table with all our bits and pieces around it. For lounging there was a padded wicker chair in the opposite corner or a matching two seater adjacent. We did not use that much except when L was here.
 
The main living room was large and served as the dining area as well with a breakfast nook style dining table and bench. We spent most of the evenings spread out on the L shaped settee which faced the Siemens TV. (Everything in this house was Siemens. H and U both used to work for them.) The TV was tuned to a satellite but the only English channels were BBC World, CNN and SKY. Occasionally one of the German stations would have a program in English. All the Hollywood movies were dubbed in German and could be followed if you knew the story or if it was an action movie.
 
[What puzzled me was that when an animated movie was shown, such as Finding Nemo, in which the animal character's voices were dubbed by well known actors and were therefore a strong selling factor for the production how could the distributors dub unknown German voices and get away with it? It is as if Richard Gere and his two famous female clients in Chicago had their features replaced by Asian faces for the benefit of the Chinese moviegoer.]
 
The most entertaining TV channel was that devoted to gaming. No, not gaming. It was a live broadcast in which cash prizes were awarded to viewers who phoned in and identified words that related to the one on the blackboard in the studio. The format changed subtly but the entertaining part was to watch the presenters and their continuous patter as they tried to persuade viewers to phone in. Sometimes their antics would go on for half an hour with no response and I should add at this point that it was often a 'she' and 'she' would be dressed in a very revealing outfit. In fact the first time we watched she was in a bikini...but only just. And she just talked and talked and talked but she never got angry or frustrated. The same with the well dressed young men. It must have been so exasperating for them to stand up in front of the camera trying desperately to get people to phone in. We really did not know why they bothered. The crazy thing is neither Anne nor L nor myself could understand a word of what they were saying! But we were hooked on the energy and determination to succeed that poured from those presenters. 
 
The kitchen had a breakfast table and four chairs and all mod cons (Siemens of course) except that they were peculiar to us. I suppose we all get used to what we are familiar with and are easily tempted to criticise what is different. They all worked very efficiently. [Well, actually a lot of things did not work in their high tech house. One of the range elements did not work, the CD player was corrupt, we lost the internet connection during the fourth week, we lost all power in the winter room one day, the satellite TV box had to be reset a couple of times as it froze on a channel and the car needed water and oil although that did not stop it from overheating]
 
There were enough utensils and crockery for the whole street...and food! A mountain of non perishables scattered all over the kitchen cupboards most of which we could not identify. I think U does a lot of home cooking by the number of herbs and spices and mixtures.
 
The main bedroom was enormous ...too big really...with a huge closet and a veranda. The bathroom was wonderful. They can never be too big. Two hand basins, a very easy to operate shower and a large separate bath...which we never used. There was another bedroom/study on that floor and on the top floor under the roof was a complete bed sitter with settee, bed, TV etc.
 
And we had a basement. Three rooms down there would you believe. One was the laundry and included a spare shower. The other was a workshop plus store room but you could still fit a pool table in there! Last but not least was the bunker (???).  A room devoted to the heating system. Two huge oil tanks with pipes leading every which way and from which, from time to time during the day, came the most ominous rumblings. I have not set foot in there since day 1. 
 
Enough about the house.
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