I was in London last night but only near the airport. I didn’t know about the attack till I was already in Germany. I really feel for London, but the British are resilient as well as very polite.
I took an early morning flight (and not surprisingly a 6:30 am flight on a Sunday to Frankfurt was not packed, so it was an easy flight. Frankfurt is not my favorite airport though. The planes land far away from the terminal and passengers are bussed in, then have to walk about a mile to get to baggage. On the other hand, the baggage was there minutes after I arrived at the baggage carousel. So that was the “plane” part of the travel.
The various train stations connect to the terminal. It was a bit of a hike but not bad. I bought a ticket (that wasn’t as easy as it should have been…I couldn’t use the kiosk because my credit card does not have a pin and I didn’t have euros in small enough denominations to buy a ticket for cash…..US, get with the chip AND pin!), and had a quick trip to Baden Baden via Manheim (always nice when the platform for the next train is next to the platform of the arriving train.
A taxi took me to my apartment I rented for the week. It’s quite nice and has a washing machine (!!!). The only downside is that it’s right next to a church and the church bells are quite loud. I think if I close the windows and exterior shutters though it will be ok. It’s nice to not be in a hotel this week.
I played a bit of tennis with Marc Pepin of Canada today too. The red clay is certainly a lot different from the green. The court we hit on was very soft and of course much higher bouncing than the green clay. I almost didn’t get to practice though. I went to use the ladies’ room, and locked the door…and it stuck and stayed locked. Wouldn’t budge. And there wasn’t enough room to go over or under the door. So I started yelling and pounding and eventually someone heard me…he had to go get a wrench to unlock the door (I would have felt like an idiot if he’d just calmly opened it though) and told me it needed oil. So that was an inauspicious start to this tournament.
The Baden Baden Rot Weiss Club is an old one, set in a park along a stream. It’s really pretty in Baden Baden, and very green, with lots of old buildings as well. In fact the building I’m staying in was built in 1890.
Today is Sunday and tomorrow is another German holiday. When the Germans have a holiday they mean it…all the stores are closed (though not the restaurants). So I was happy I’d thought to get some fruit and bread in Frankfurt. Well, it’s nearly 10 and the sun is just setting…I’m practicing early, so hope the church bells also go to bed soon!.