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  • Writer's pictureNicholas Nelson

Die Schweiz und Frankreich


You can see how close the restaurants are to the river in this picture. The restaurant where we ate is pictured here somewhere.

Ich hab vergessen, dass der 17. Mai wir nach die Schweiz gefahren haben. Wir hätten nicht viel Zeit, aber wir aßen ein teureres Abendessen am Rhein. Es war in das Budget. Es war Nudeln und nicht so interessant. I konnte es in meinem Haus gekocht. Wir haben nur für unsere Stuhle bezahlt. Und die Schweiz ist sehr teuer auch. In Freiburg ist Eis nur 1 Euro, aber in die Schweiz ist Eis 3,50 Euro für einen Kugel. Teuer. Teuer. Teuer. Nicht mehr, danke. Wo ist Freiburg? Ich mag Freiburg.

Und in der Schweiz haben sie erschreckende Toiletten. Check them out here. We each used the bathroom because we knew how scary it was. The service wasn’t good, the food wasn’t good, but the bathroom was very interesting. It made all sorts of noises and turning of the seats. Joel described it as a transformer. Watch the video to decide yourself.

The day afterwords, we traveled to Strasbourg, France, to see the European Union Parlament . The train ride over wasn’t too bad, but once we got off I was just so lost. Now I know how Jon has been feeling this entire trip, having that language gap. Granted, I don’t know everything in German, but I have a general understanding of what is happening. Once we landed in France, I had no idea what to do with myself. I could hear that it was French, but that’s all I could identify.

Once we wandered long enough through the Altstadt, we had to go find some food. We’re in France; get a baguette. So we did. I just got one that had salmon, cucumbers, and tomatoes. It was quite tasty considering the lack of ingredients. But that’s what made it taste good; I could taste just the bread and each ingredient. It wasn’t a mash of flavor or overwhelming crash of sensation, but it was true to each food. Way to go. Much impressed.

Once we made it to the EU Parlament, we found some new friends from University of Georgia in Atlanta and went on a tour with them. We had to go through security like the airport except we got to keep our shoes on. It was fun to see all the flags from the Union lined up in order. The order is important.

When they put the flags in order, they use the title of the country in the maiden language of that state. Finnland for instance is not located near F because in Finn, Finnland is Soumi.  The same with Spain being España. This way it can ring true to each language. My own philosophy is that every language should do that. Germany shouldn’t be called Germany. It’s Deutschland to the Germans, España to the Spanish, Soumi to the Finns. On their map, they call it that, so why can’t we call it that as well? It would improve the understanding of the diversity in the world. That’s a pretty big initiate to set into place, but I believe it is an important one to adhere to.

We also got to see the place where they hold sessions, when a session was in place. We were lucky enough to put on one of those headsets and listen to the many different translations through different channels. I was stupid enough and tried to listen to the German channel when the English speakers were announcing certain things. I couldn’t get the gist of anything at that point. I tried doing that for maybe twenty minutes and knew that I just couldn’t do it anymore. English is just as interesting to listen to when it’s translated from other languages.

Before the evening session began, we wandered Strasbourg incredibly hard. We just sat in the park and people watched. We even watched some woman approach a few workers gardening those brown lines of dirt that crossed the park. She strode up with her grandchild in a stroller and watched these men rake the dirt. Sam and I identified immediately that she was uncomfortable in some capacity. her face was cringing and she was slowly stepping closer to them. She eventually just walked over and started speaking to them about fixing the way they were raking. The men seemed to not understanding why she was talking to them and they didn’t really understand why they needed to change it. She then grabbed one of the rakes from their hands and started to show them how to rake this public park. Thank goodness she was there. The park has been saved.

During dinner, we all tried Escargot, nasty little snails bathed in seasoning and garlic. They actually weren’t too bad. The way we had to attack them was interesting. There was one utensil for holding on to the shell of the snail, which didn’t work very well. It was something that reminded me of a chemistry lab in high school. It was one that you had to push the handles together in order for the front two clamps to separate. I was thinking about holding these dead, cooked snails like a test tube, experimenting. There was a small fork that we pried the cooked snail out of and ate. The snail itself was rather tasteless. It was smothered in garlic and flavoring in order to give it taste. It worked very well. I wouldn’t say it was gross, but I wouldn’t say it was good. It was a pretty normal flavor.

The nice part about the location where we ate was that it was right next to this postcard-esque location. We ate practically right next to this view around sunset before we headed back to Schloss Beuggen for the night.

What a shame. It’s so beautiful.

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