Thursday, August 25, 2011

August 26, 2011 -- Luxembourg City, Luxembourg

The snorer is gone! There are usually five guys in our dormitory room here in the Luxembourg City youth hostel. Three nights ago, or actually about 1 in the morning, a heavy-set, hairy, middle-aged man arrived as the rest of us were sleeping. He entered the room, slammed the door, and turned on the bright overhead light. Naturally, he woke us all. Being of mean temper, I yelled at him in English to turn off the light and use his flashlight. He obeyed without answering. Well, he turned off the light, opened the door to a hallway a crack, and used the light that entered to make his bed (his bed was right next to the door).

When I awoke early the next morning, he was still asleep. I went downstairs to eat breakfast and take care of some chores in the internet, and when I returned to the room, he had left for the day.

The next night he again came in late and slammed the door but didn't turn on the overhead light. He feel asleep and promptly started snoring loudly. VERY loudly. I attempted to awake him so he would roll off his back and stop snoring first by shaking his bed, then by dangling a wet towel in his face, and finally by grabbing his arm and shaking him vigorously. Nothing worked. He snored through it all. I have never known anyone to sleep so soundly.

To the delight of the rest of us in the room, he left yesterday.

Some of you old-time cyclists may remember Tom Hayes, who used to race in the 1970s. I was delighted this morning to receive an E-mail from him. I hadn't heard from or of Tom in decades.

The weather forecast for yesterday was for thunderstorms. Why do I keep putting faith in the European weather forecasts? The morning brought clear, blue skies that turned to partly cloudy in the afternoon. The late afternoon did bring some very light rain showers, but nothing like the storms that had been forecast.

In the morning I explored more of the fortifications that protected Pfaffenthal from the early Roman times up until World War I. There are so many of them that I keep finding new ones to explore. In the early afternoon I climbed the hill  northwest of the hostel to the area occupied by the modern installations of the European Union. Luxembourg City is the home of the European Court. I was amazed at the number of large high-rise buildings that the Court occupies and by the fact that even more are under construction. They reinforced my prejudice that the European Union government is a bloated, inefficient bureaucracy, a prejudice that is shared by many Europeans.

The following photo, taken looking back after I had left the district, shows a few of those buildings in the distance.

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