Rabu, 01 Februari 2012

- 8 Centigrade Luxembourg

Last evening Madame l'Ambassador drove from Oxford to Luxembourg in frigid temperature. The interior of the Porsche Boxster was well-heated and I dozed off several times in the passenger seat. Upon waking each time I asked, if she wanted me to drive. Thankfully Madame l'Ambassador refused every offer, as the Porsche ate the motorways of England, France, Belgium, and Luxembourg. On one occasion a bump woke me. I rubbed my eyes and put on my glasses. It was 2am and we were not on the autoroute, but a small side road in a dark suburb."Where are we?" "Someplace near Lille." Madame l'Ambassador explained that she had missed the turning for Bruxelles. "I'm trying to find an entrance to the autoroute."I sat up in my seat and surveyed our surroundings. No signs indicated the right direction and the sky was blanketed by ominous snow clouds. Madame l'Ambassador was not accepting advice. She had erred exiting from the autoroute, but had a sense of where she should be other than the frozen purgatory of here. The temperature gauge on the dashboard read - 5 Centigrade or 20 Fahrenheit. It wasn't arctic conditions, but winter had finally come to Northern Europe.Madame l'Ambassador and I argued through the outskirts of Lille, but she finally found the autoroute and we were soon zooming at 90 mph or 150 kph. Luxembourg was two hours to the east.The highway was apocalyptically empty. Most of the trucks were parked in the rest areas and only a few cars braved the post-midnight solitude. Snow covered the ground after Namur and deepened in the Ardennes. We arrived at the Residence a little before 5am. The two of us unpacked the car and hurried into bed. Madame l'Ambassador to hers and I to mine on the top floor.Before going to sleep I touched the window. If it had been metal, then my flesh would have stuck. Glass was much more forever and I hoped than dawn would bring some light. I was back in Mittel Europa.

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