Sunday, September 13, 2009

Strasbourg Day the last

In spite of what the website says, it takes about ten minutes to ride from the Strasbourg Central train station to the Airport. In spite of the map in the train, the airport is the first stop, not the fifth. In spite of all reasonable sense, the announcements on the train call the airport by the town name Entzheim, rather than the word Aéroport. And in spite of what the woman seemed to say in the train station, the train to the airport also goes to La Salle — that's not where the airport is.

And so it was that after a lovely half-hour ride through the French countryside, the conductor found me without the proper ticket. We were pulling into a station; he hurried me out and pointed me across the platform, where a train heading back would be arriving shortly. About two minutes after his train had pulled away, I realized that I had left my backpack on board.

For the full length of the train back to Strasbourg, I sat anxiously waiting, while the conductor tried to get through to the other train to locate my bag. She did not succeed — the earlier conductor would not answer his cell — but she did confirm with the Lost-and-Found that the bag would most likely return to Strasbourg on its own accord by that evening: how long was I still in town? The flight leaves in an hour? There is no way to get the bag back in time — La Salle is two hours away.

Can I call the Lost-and-Found? She doesn't know the number. But will they be able to mail it? To where? Denmark. Another phone call, and yes, it will cost about thirty euro to mail. Fine, I say. Merci beaucoup.

So I will call Strasbourg in the morning. In the mean time, I found a shop selling toothbrushes and toothpaste at the Copenhagen airport, I have washed the clothes I was wearing, and I will go to H&M tomorrow. I have my computer and charger, my phone (sans charger), my wallet, keys, and passport. So all is not lost. Still, this is not how I had hoped to end an otherwise wonderful weekend in France. C'est la vie.

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