Across Continents

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Greetings from Gunzburg

They started it. Youth Hostels – Jugendherberge – had originated in Germany. Hardly surprising for a nation that appeared to have a bit of a thing for youth movements. It had taken a while to find Gunzburg hostel. A few teenagers sat outside on the steps, smoking. Inside the lady was very helpful – a room for me and a garage for the bike. And yes, they had lots of towels. Did I have a hostelling card? Yes. A gold one. I’d have to surrender it, but just for the night. Breakfast would be at 7.15 sharp. I winced, but I don’t think she noticed.

Pleased that I’d finally managed to secure some accommodation without the earlier dramas, I made for the town centre. Expensive boutiques in little alleys off the main cobbled plaza. Town houses, various pastel shades, with steep roofs. I found a table in a street cafe. It was decorated with facsimiles of newspaper cuttings – Le Monde, Politika, and the Daily Express – it advised ’Avoid the hidden danger’ but did not elaborate. I ordered a beer.

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