Luxembourg is gorgeous. QWERTZ kezboards are crappz. Travelling alone, I’ve been compulsively writing stuff down and saving it to blog as some kind of substitute companionship, but out of sympathy for the people waiting for my computer I’ll talk zou onlz through the train ride. (See, I can find the Y, but it’s so much effort…)

I took the overnight train, and during false dawn it pulled into Cologne (or Köln, if zou’re zo inzlinedzz.) Three years ago, I had spent about two days there on the classic high school whirlwind tour, so I didn’t expect to recognize it at all… but crossing the bridge through the groggy fog of horrible couchette sleep, I suddenly flashed back to sitting on the bus while someone up front pointed out all the parts of town that hadn’t been smashed to bits during WWII, and of course walking into the cathedral while the organist was practicing and understanding for the first time ever why so many people choose to worship inside. Approaching the train station, there’s this incongruous view of the cathedral rising out at you from the beginnings of the light, and immediately you’re swallowed up by ghetto bauhaus cylindrical train station roof. It’s kind of like being born backwards, if you’re a robot.

And as usual, on the regional connecting train through Germanz, I kept looking at all the old people (for some reason the rural train-taking demographic in Germanz is such that almost everzone was this old, at least at 7:30 am) and wondering how old they were in 1942 and what they and their families were doing then. I should reallz, reallz stop doing that. It’s like the Viking warrior bit, only not at all funny.

In fact, imagining people as members of their culture’s most recent barbaric regime is only funny in Scandinavia. I think Vikings go along with Elvis, Jesus, and the Ayahtollah Khomeini in passing the “10,000 parachuting” test.

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