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The life and times of james Hart: his family, his music, life in Luton and his occasional escapes onto the internet.

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Sunday, 5 June 2005

Guten morgen aus Deutschland (Tag 1)

squished bottleWell, I'm here - I arrived at Dortmund Airport at about quarter to ten (German time); the flight was fine, although there was no opportunity to say "I can see my house from here" since the plane went a bit too fast off the runway (I don't think that was avoidable), and I was in an aisle seat.

Brian (the other chap who was flying from Luton) was a seasoned traveller, and, having sat in the 'jump seat' (a spare postition in the cockpit) before 11th September, had plenty of interesting facts. Take, for example, the fact that - because the air's so thin outside - the cabin is pressurised; when the plane gets to 30,000 feet - its cruising height - the pressure in the cabin is actually much lower than on the ground. In fact, it's as if the plane was flying at 6000 feet - I proved this by opening my bottle of water when the plane was at its zenith, and then sealing it. See the picture (right) for the evidence!

EasyJet plane and lots of concreteDortmund Airport is really odd - almost the reverse of Heathrow, in that it is modern and extremely expansive, but very quiet. The benefit of this was that escaping was quick and untroublesome. We were dropped off at the hotel by a taxi driver who didn't really know where he was going (reliance on GPS is never a good thing, especially when it tells you to "fahr links" and it's a right-only turn) not long before half-past ten and I checked into my room.

I was rather disappointed to see that there were absolutely no tea or coffee making facilities; previously when I'd stayed here, the room had a little kitchenette, and although there wasn't a kettle, I could heat some water on the hob. Much as I dislike moaning (so this paragraph will be the end of it, I promise!) the recently installed wireless network is supposed to be '>A HREF="http://www.ipass.com/" TARGET="LINKS">iPASS' friendly (such that I could log onto the BBC network) but told me it wasn't, and the room is on the ground floor at the back of the hotel, so I can hardly pick up any radio station... Now that feels better.

I've just heard this bizarre news story on the radio - now that is what I call superstitious. Come examination season, I think there should be a nationwide ban on rolling single dice.

On the upside, the room has a 'back door' to a small garden area, with a tiny little patio on which, if it weren't throwing it down with rain, I would enjoy sitting out. Maybe later.

My challenge for tomorrow: there's a barber's just round the corner doing hair-cuts for €7 (about £4) so I shall try and speak enough German to get my hair trimmed in the continental style. Is that such a good idea I wonder?

Posted by james at June 5, 2005 10:16 PM


 
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