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Thu, 27 Dec 2007
going to bruxelles (0 comments)
so, today was the day zombiequeen (aka "karo") and i (aka "nostromo") were going to fly to bruxelles (aka "bruessel"). so i got up pretty early, wasted more than one hour with our water-heating system, since i wanted to take a shower. but it was in vain - no warm water for me that morning. ok, so i went to the railway station, bought a ticket to vienna and was going to vienna on the "EC - Europaeischer Computerfuehrerschein" train from linz to vienna - wohooo! zombiequeen fetched me from the central station in vienna and we drove to her parent's house. there we wanted to print out our flight- and hotel-reservation since the travel agency said we should do so. unfortunately zombiequeen got all the needed mails on her mail account from the university of applied science which, of course, had a planned downtime for maintenance. great - no mails, no information, no e-tickets for the airport. but we thought a passport should be sufficient to get our tickets. and luckily it was. the bigger problem was the hotel reservation. since we booked the hotel in september, we didn't even remember the name of the hotel. so, what to do? at first we called the booking agency, but lady in germany said she needed the booking-number to do any research. oh, guess what - we didn't have that one either, since it was in the email. ok, plan b was to ask michele to keep the sysadmins asking and annoying to finally get some access to the damn mail-server, so we could get the information we needed so desperately. our flight was scheduled for 17:55, the admins said it would be fixed at 17:00 by the latest. so we went to the airport and were hoping the admins could fix it and michele could get all the information for us. fortunately, both of them managed to do a great job, so we got the name and address (thanks again to michele and google-maps) of the hotel. so we finally were prepared and were boarding the plane happily. the flight itself was rather boring - the usual stuff one can expect from a flight to any destination within europe. so we arrived at the bruxelles airport and started the quest to seek our luggage. yeah, you know those signs with a piece of luggage showing you the way to those conveyor belt where you get your luggage back? yop, we followed them. and followed them. and followed them. and after a veeeery long walk through an almost empty airport (all shops were closed, and even "pizza hut" was closed) following those signs, we finally found our luggage. quest one solved! we decided to take the train to the town center, since it seemed less confusing to us then searching several bus-lines and the stations they are stopping at. the first surprising thing: the transfer from the airport to the city center was pretty cheap, 2.80EUR per person. if i remember correctly, this was the cheapest transfer i have ever had from an airport to the next town. it seems there are loads of railway stations in bruxelles, so we got off the train at the one that was closest to our hotel ("gare midi"). next quest was to find the exit of the train station. another pretty long walk through almost empty hallways and corridors. but of course we also finished this quest and got loads of experience points! on the map the distance from where we got off to our hotel seemed not that much, we decided to walk. so we saw very narrow houses, loads of africans, turkish, and other "foreign" people in this district. our bruxelles-guide (in paper form) said, that in the center of bruxelles loads of poor people (among them loads of immigrants) live. and that's exactly the impression we got. ok, admittedly, it was dark and already late when we were walking down those streets, so let's see what our impression will be tomorrow, seeing the scenery at daylight. as a side note: in austria it's just the other way round: people living in the center of a town are usually the richer ones, and around the town center are those ghettos with all the skyscrapers and the like. here it's the outer parts of the town where richer people prefer to live. day one is done. we are pretty tired and therefore are going to sleep now. we haven't made up any plans yet what we are going to do tomorrow, but i'm sure it will be interesting. so stay tuned!

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