Strasbourg

Trip Start Apr 07, 2010
1
24
37
Trip End Oct 11, 2011


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Flag of France  , Alsace,
Tuesday, June 8, 2010

I decided in Paris that I really wanted to travel to Eastern Europe. I am really interested to see and experience the life and culture of this area, it seems to really intrigue me. Western Europe is completely different from Australia in every single way, the culture, the people, the food, the language. But - it is also completely the same. I mean in the most basic form. They have their job, their money and their 'things,' I want to travel to places where life is more interesting, and perhaps not so focused on the sort of consumerism and commercialism that I see everywhere in the West.. Also, travel is to easy when everybody (well not everybody, but always somebody) speaks English! It takes the adventure away from it all, I really want to go places where I am forced out of my comfort zone (which is now a lot larger then it was before), and into the unknown.

So! First, I will spend a bit of time in Germany I think, because that makes sense, seeing as it is in between France and Eastern Europe. Therefore, I decided I would take a big leap, like I did to get here to Paris, and travel a reasonable distance, rather then hoping short distances from place to place like I have been doing a lot of. I managed to find dirt cheap tickets to Strasbourg, which is right on the French-German border, and so I decided there I would go.

I arrived there, originally intending to spend a few nights. I waiting until afternoon to meet my host, Filip, a Polish guy studying Spintronics at uni here in Strasbourg. He was quite the outgoing fellow, and we went to a student restraunt to eat some traditional Alsacian food (which resembled a pizza, however with a white sauce on a crispy base, as well as ham, onions and cheese) before going back to his place. When we did, I was astonished my the size of it! The room was tiny - and that is all that it was. I have seen photos of students accommodation before, and sure the rooms are small - but this took it to another level. AND the fact that I was expected to somehow fit in there as well! I have no problems with small rooms or anything, I was just incredibly surprised by it that's all. He did have a sweet deal though - he was only paying €100 a month for this! The funniest thing about it was that on his CS profile, where it asks "max number of surfers" he had put 99...

It turned out though that I did not spend much time sleeping here anyway. That evening, he had invited a heap of his friends from uni to meet up and spend some time together. It turned out to be quite a fun night, with a very multi-cultural group of people. There were: 2 Polish, 2 Americans, 2 French, 1 Moroccan, 1 Romanian, and 1 Aussie (me) there. I got talking to the 2 American girls, Katie and Kendall, and they were traveling to Nancy, a small little town about 150km away, tomorrow morning. Katie had scored her mums car, who was working in Albania, as was driving around, so they invited me to come along. Sure, why not? Never give free transportation a miss!

So, as it turned out, I did not spend much time on Filip's "couch," only a few hours, as I had to get up early the next morning. His couch consisted of an aluminum sheet for insulation, and a picnic rub to soften the hardness of the tiled floor. Needless to say, it wasn't the most comfortable of couches - but hey, beggars can't be choosers right?
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