Day 8: Une Carafe

Morning is broken. I have slight headache from sleeping funny; at least that’s what I’m telling myself. The neighbors are feeding the ducks amazing the amount of noise they can make, especially the babes.

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Our first evening in Strasbourg I had acquired a couple of roses from a traveling rose salesman. Carmen went for girly-pink while Leslie stuck with virginal white. The boys across the way however went with traditional red; seems romance has been lost among the women-folk of our generation. Thank god for men. The point of this comment however was that we finally found a use for the Pinot. The soft yellow label and clear bottle complement the beautiful tones of the flowers perfectly. We will definitely need to get another bottle if I buy more flowers.

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Leslie and I set out after I waited and waited and waited. Even Carmen was getting anxious with all the waiting. Really… I had to wait and wait. And wait. We wandered towards the cathedral and past. I found a ceramic jug I think I’ll go back for and an awesome hat shop.

An antique shop with some 6th century figures (at least that’s what the sign said, an old book store, some awesome modern cookware and table settings were also on the hit list.

Eventually we hit the canal on the other side and swung west.

On the way to find some lunch we spotted another church so we detoured. The Church of St Pierre Le Jeune had some very old history. There may be some bits from the late 100s but the Romanesque cloisters dated from 1021. The choir was consecrated in 1320, with chapels added in 14th & 15th century. It became Protestant from 1524. In 1682 the Catholics were granted use of the choir by Louis and continued to share it until 1898.

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We were treated to a practice session on the Silbermann organ dating from 1780. A bit jarring when he stopped suddenly mid-phrase but beautiful as only a pipe organ can be nonetheless. So far this has been my favourite church this trip between the cloisters, frescos and crypts.

We soon headed south and stopped at a crepe place just south of Gutenberg place for a Demi of cidre doux and some crepes. Little did Leslie know her crepe Marine was mostly cream and cheese… Oh well, she ate the buckwheat pancake at least.

After lunch we hit the Musee D’Alsace, a museum dedicated to the history of the Alsace lifestyle. Lots of info about culture and life in the region. Apparently I was correct about my assumption of u-shaped homes: house on one side, barn in the back, livestock pens across from the house.

The museum is in an old house itself. Quite beautiful with lots of wood and half-timbered construction. We learned about religions and conscription and day to day life. Quite an interesting area.

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On the way home we stocked up on booze and other necessary provisions. I broke protocol and picked up a rosé from Roussilon as I couldn’t find one from Alsace. Looks like it’s French toast for dinner. Oh and I stopped by the ceramic store and picked up a traditional clay carafe for drinking wine out of. Seems the tradition is cool carafe and smaller glasses to keep the wine from warming up.

A visit in the shade, some blog catchup, a few moments marveling at Leslie reading her first ebook and it’s 6 and time to start drinking… I mean eating…

The rose went well with tomato salad, French toast and the traditional Maple Joe. Turns out I’m the only one that want Joe though, Leslie’s a sugar girl and Carmen’s salt and peppa’ all the way.

Since tonight is our last night in Strasbourg and dependable wifi, after dinner we headed to the wifi zone and booked a hotel in Trier. The Hotel Kessler if you need to know. So next Wednesday we will get off the boat and take the train to Trier via Luxembourg. We’ve got 4 nights there at least. It’s Moselle country so who know when we’ll sober up.

Speaking of wine, here we are in the heart of the third largest wine producing region and the German twits two boats down are drinking wine out of box. Really, they had a box of red and a box of white. Heathens!

Tonight we are in the bow as our neighbors are loud-ish Italians on the upper deck of their boat. Conversation is accompanied by an Alsatian Edelzwicker. None of us have ever heard of it. But we are slowly getting into the whites. We have to, the red scared us so much we haven’t dared to try the other bottle Carmen picked up on the first day. The carafe is useful and pretty.