09 March, 2012

Kolding, Denmark

The room for breakfast in the First Hotel.

Yesterday I spent the morning in the college that Dick was lecturing at. I worked on my blog sitting in the teachers' room, which actually was a huge office where they all did their work. I laughed when I looked around me.  Remember the paper free office? Well it isn't here. There were stacks of papers on every desk, on the floor, under the desks.The biggest lie we were ever told by computer producers. 

I have tried to get rid of the paper in our office. For awhile I scanned receipts and put them in files. But then at tax time, I had to run the receipts off and put them in files for the accountant. That's twice as much paper. 

In any case, when Dick was finished we all went for lunch in the cafeteria where the students also eat.. Now this was a wonderful lunch, a buffet with tons of salad food, beef and chicken and again potatoes done in many ways. We sat with three of the teachers, Hanne, a chubby lady with bright blond curly hair, who carried a hot pink backpack. She was the sweetest, constantly coming back to the teachers' room to see if I had coffee, or if I needed some fruit. Then there was the tall skinny woman, whose name I forgot. She reminds me of many Danish women, a boy's haircut, worn severely, no make up and dressed in jeans and a pullover.  And Bodil, seemingly the head of the teachers. She was very serious, well dressed with a mint green leather jacket and a skirt. She and I had a good conversation about teaching language in the classroom. Then Bodil drove us to Kolding, pronounced Calling. 

The countryside reminded me of the landscape just west of Madison, rolling hills, pastures, fields where grain and corn will be planted. Felt like home. 

The First Hotel looked good. But we had to wait for two hours until our room was clean. I sat down and pulled out my smart phone to play scrabble and no wifi. I asked the woman behind the desk and she handed me a piece of paper with the code. I tried to put it in, but it didn't work. I again asked what was wrong. "I don't know," she said irritated, "no one else has any problems. I can't help you." Of course, I was really unhappy. Wifi is important to me. And I want to play scrabble. 

 No one else has any problems? Is the receptionist insinuating that there is something wrong with me? That I'm too stupid. But then she can't fix it either. So what is she saying about herself? I am thinking, why doesn't she ask one of the other people there to help me?  Maybe I'm overreacting, but I did feel like batting her. In any case, a receptionist does not dismiss you. She at least pretends she wants to help you.

 When the room was ready, we went up and I pulled out my computer and figured out what to do. It was too complicated to do on the telephone. 
The Steak House

Dick found a restaurant, called A Heref0rd Boeffstouw.  Which I guess means, A Hereford Steak House. Anyway there were all kinds of steaks there including the Japanese milk fed massaged beef. It was all very expensive, but then everything is in Denmark. The restaurant was in an ancient yellow building, next to a building that was built in 1589, a red building where sausage used to be made.
The oldest building I have seen in Northern Europe.
After being in Spain it was unbelievably cold here. It was overcast and the wind blew right through my winter coat, so we took a taxi. Everyone thought it was so funny, because it is only five minutes to the hotel. But age has its privileges.  

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