|A shot taken on my walk towards the Alt Stadt earlier today...|
|Statue in a pleasant park en route to the Alt Stadt|
|Well, I hadn't really mentioned cycling so I thought a photo might do...|
|Very close to the Alt Stadt I found this rather impressive piece of work...|
|"Down by the river..."|
|The Alt Stadt...|
|In the park and going back towards Karlstrasse...|
I left the Apple store empty-handed – not that I had any intention of buying something. In the past I might have been content to play on the laptops and secretly wish I had the money to buy a new MacBook, but not today. I don't see the point in tablets or the Apple watch and I already have an iphone, albeit an iphone 4S that's four years old and out of contract. It's great being out of contract as all 02 have to do is piss me off and they can sling their hook! Get in! There's nothing worse than being beholden to a phone company. It's bad enough having a loan or a mortgage.
So I'm back in my room, I fly home tomorrow and I can lie in for longer too, although not too long as I've got to pack all my stuff and check out prior to heading for the central station and a brief train ride to the airport. That's what's great about Dusseldorf, everything is close-by, including the flughaven.
It is now 0445hrs and I've woken up, probably because I had a cappuccino for dinner last night or because of that rich chocolate mousse. I could have done without that. I'm finding that eating out is a kind of culinary Russian roulette, last night being a case in point. Generally speaking I've been pretty 'good' on the food and drink front. My alcohol intake has been very low – last night just those very small beers and a glass of wine with my meal – but when I weaken and opt for dessert it's like crossing a mine field. Don't get me wrong, I'm not one of those people who has to watch what he eats, but when the dessert menu was offered (my fault for requesting it) I was presented with a kind of loaded gun, albeit a 'gun' I'm familiar with.
Some of the dessert items had form and I knew to steer clear. Tiramisu, once my all-time favourite dessert, will now always be avoided, not because it gives me a stomach ache or anything like that, but purely because it's so rich and full of things that ain't good for me. Grand Padano, a nice cheese, yes, but the last time I had it here the portion size was huge, even if I did, eventually, work my way through it; and then there's the dessert that is basically some kind of dessert wine or liqueur accompanied by biscotti; for a start the biscotti is so hard and the drink so thick and syrupy. There are other desserts I know to avoid: the Creme Caramel, the Zabaglione, the pannacotta and so on, but the chocolate mousse, I thought, that can't be too bad. I imagined an elegant wine glass with a light chocolate inside it, possibly a fresh raspberry as garnish on top. But no, it was three large 'quenelles' – 'dollops' would be more appropriate – of the stuff, three dog turds in a large white dish. One dollop would have been enough, but I ploughed through it in between sips of the cappuccino, wishing I'd simply ordered the coffee like I did on Monday night.
And now I'm wide awake as the time creeps towards 0500hrs. There's a bottle of Evian next to me and I'm considering opening it, like I did yesterday in the early hours, thanks, perhaps to that rich Indian meal, who knows? It might well be that it's 'the hotel life' and unfamiliar surroundings. It takes a while for me to get accustomed to sleeping in a hotel room and just when I think I've cracked it, it's time to fly home.
My next dilemma is whether or not to go back to bed or simply stay up; but there's little to do at 0512hrs and having not switched on the television since I arrived Monday night, I'm not going to break the habit now.