So I just booked passage on the ESNTrain, a unique train that will tour Europe for 25 days, visiting 18 countries. I'll be on it April 17th through April 21st. Now all I need is recommendations for what to do during the stopovers:
  • 17 hours in Brussels
    (4 hours in Luxembourg in the middle of the night)
  • 6 hours in Strasbourg
  • 1 hour in Karlsruhe
  • 10 hours in Heidelberg
  • 6 hours in Bern
  • 9 hours in Zürich
  • 6 hours in München
  • 1 hour in Salzburg
  • 7 hours in Linz
  • A day (or possibly two) in Wien
I can probably find something to do in Karlsruhe, Salzburg, Zürich and München, and Heidelberg is probably not very interesting on a Sunday evening so I suspect I'll catch a tram or train to Mannheim/Ludwigshafen. That leaves me with things to do in Linz, Bern, Strasbourg, Brussels and Wien. Suggestions? Bear in mind that some of these periods are quite early (6 AM in München), late (late afternoon - midnight in several places) and on Sunday (Heidelberg and Strasbourg).

(no subject)

So I went to Alphen the other day to clean out my old apartment, and among the things to do was to deal with my two bikes there.

My good one was sitting in front of the apartment building where I left it, but some jerk has attached it to the bike rack with someone else’s lock. The police refuse to do anything about it until I can prove it’s mine. Bloody nuisance.

The other bike was to be thrown away, but I had to get it to the council dump which turned out to be quite a chore, both tires were almost flat, the chain kept coming off and halfway through the nuts that kept the back wheel going in a straight line gave out... and on top of that it was hot with 95% humidity. I pried the bell off and then launched it into the iron bin at the dump.

(no subject)

Last week I took fuzzie’s laptop to be repaired in Woerden. Due to poor timing, missing a train and not knowing where it was, I spent a total of 2½ hours out, for something which is only 20 km away via the shortest route. So I decided to cycle there to pick up the laptop. Made two wrong turns on the way there, but on my way back I managed to get back in one go, taking about 50 minutes.

(no subject)

fuzzie and I are considering going on holiday in the UK this summer. Since I've seen most of southern England and Wales (the only major places south of Cambridge that I haven't seen are Plymouth and Brighton), I'm making a list of midland, northern and Scottish places that I'm considering visiting.
  • Liverpool
  • Manchester
  • York
  • Birmingham
  • Newcastle
  • Edinburgh
  • Glasgow
  • Leeds
  • (Brighton)

If you think I should or should not visit any of these places (or others), tell me.

Edit: I'm not really looking for tourist attractions, I just want to get a feel for what a place is like. I've been known to take random trains and buses in Paris, London and Cardiff just to get an idea of how the various peoples of Europe spend their lives. This is why — supposedly — not very appealing places like Glasgow and Leeds are on the list.

(no subject)

I spent a total of two hours today and yesterday trying to fix a blowout on my rear bike tire. It involved taking the whole back wheel off, which is kind of involved because of the in-hub gear system. I had to spend a long time putting the whole thing back on, tensioning the chain and aligning the wheel. Here's to hoping I don't have to do this again soon. The blown tire also caused me to miss a lecture :(

(no subject)

Our flat has sprung a leak, causing much filthy water to drip into our assembled kitchen appliances.

Also, I went to Leiden public library to study for the day, which was most successful. I managed to condense the calculus I'm required to know onto ten sheets. Having ten sheets of notes which I don't understand is obviously much better than having a handout which I don't understand.

(no subject)

The exam disaster wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, on account of me getting the part of the exam I did manage to finish almost entirely correct. I now have a 6.6 out of 10, so I probably won't bother appealing.