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Sunday, July 16, 2006

European Survival Note!

Hello All!

I am writing this from my hotel room in Frankfurt, Germany. Sounds a bit glamorous, doesn't it? Before you get too envious, I guess I should rephrase. I am holed up in a hotel room, waiting for the portable air conditioner to bring the temperature down to a reasonable level. We had to change rooms and pay 20 Euros more per day to get this little wonder so that we would be able to sleep at night.
The Portable air conditioner

It is 90+ degrees here, and very humid and since this is a place that is normally geared towards keeping warm, hot weather can be unbearable. Air conditioning is almost nonexistent and since the Germans are perpetually afraid of drafts, air circulation is not that great. When I read the hotel had a sauna, I didn't count on it being the elevator!

Last night was spent with the hotel windows wide open, which let in a little cooler night air, but also gave us an up close an personal audio of the Frankfurt night life, which seems to slow down around 3:00 in the morning. This morning we packed up all of our travel guides, souvenirs and accumulated junk and
switched rooms. (Did I say portable air conditioner?).

We switched on the box, only to find that nothing got any colder. The fan, on top speed, created a little breeze, but there was only enough room for one of us to huddle in front of it. Then we noticed a small, red light flashing on the control panel. A HA! We then deduced that our little air conditioner was trying ever so hard to speak to us, to tell us that it had been sorely neglected and would really like to cool us off if only we could fix what ails it!

The little water drop next to the blinking red light was our clue, and we decided that it either needed water, or had too much of it somewhere. Since we have never had a thirsty air conditioner at home, we chose the latter.

After a few minutes of pulling and tugging on this panel or that, we indeed found a drainage container that was overflowing with greenish water. We dumped it down the toilet and then I gave it a thorough scrubbing to remove the fancy, European algae and we slid it back into place.

Magically, the little blinking red light was gone, and cool air was pouring out the front! Freude schöner Götterfunken, Tochter aus Elysium!!

Here is a picture from our hotel room before the night life starts hopping..

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