Friday, February 10, 2012

Freezing February in Luxembourg - Part I

view of Luxembourg from the Mudam
February in Luxembourg has been cold! As you've no doubt seen on the news wherever you are, Europe has been hit by an insane cold snap. While hundreds are dying in temperatures of down to -30degreesC in Eastern Europe, here in Luxembourg throughout the first week of February we've had highs of around -5 or -6 and lows of between -11 and -14degrees. So its still damn cold. No more snow has fallen since that one Sunday in late January, but what did fall has really stuck around, driving me crazy as my winter boots are full of holes.

Pepi, Dante, Ava and Kerli on the train
This first week, I went out a couple of times, to live jazz on Tuesday, to drink with another kiwi au pair here in the Spanish bar on Wednesday, and to see a Portuguese friend on Thursday. Going out, and especially coming home later at night, really requires effort in this weather! I never noticed the cold so bad last winter, but now I'm often wearing both pantyhose and thermals under my jeans! Friday saw me take Pepi out on another adventure, this time accompanied by Kerli and her dutch charges, Ava and Dante. This trip was much more successful than the first, last time Pepi had been really quite and watched everything around him with big eyes, and asked to go home to Mama a lot, this time as soon as we got on the bus he was happily narrating everything around him and I had to drag him home at the end of the day! Much to my embarrassment, his endless chatter saw him ask me both why the really wrinkly old lady sitting by us 'had so many owas (ouchies or boo-boos) on her face, and why another lady had poop on her hat. Fun times.

Pep making music
We took the bus to the train station where we met the others, and then the train to Esch-sur-Alzette to the concert venue the Rockhal, where they had a kind of interactive exhibition of electronic music for kids, with things like microphones that turned your voice into different sounds, collaborative electronic drums, and a disco music room. I found it really cool, and could easily have spent ages with Pep going around the different stations, but unfortunately Pepi is totally in love with Dante, and Dante has the attention span of a gnat, so every minute or so Dante would get up and run to the next station and Pepi would get up, look at Dante and then back at what they had been doing, look wistfully at Dante again and then back to what they'd been doing, and then rush after Dante. He was definitely most into the drums though, he kept heading back to that station, and he wouldn't go near the singing one! So, after a stop at MacDonalds for icecream we headed home, jumping into every pile of snow on the way and arriving freezing cold and very tired!

Dante and Pepi making music
That evening, Pep was complaining of a sore tummy, but I didn't think too much of it until I woke up at 3am in agony myself. After a sleepless night spent puking myself, my plans to take Pepi to play with Dante and Ava the next day so that Rogier and Jacquie could get some pre-moving work done, and to go skiing the following day were promptly scrapped, and I spent the weekend hiding in bed.

By Tuesday, I'd decided that the snow had cleared enough for me to start running naturally we had another snowfall! So instead, I went to drink a few beers and play some pool with Josh. I used to play a lot in NZ, but I've never been very good and he normally always cleans up, although I sunk my first attempt at a jump shot which I was pretty happy about.

Part of the Mudam
Wednesday morning I woke up with big intentions of going to Arlon, a city just over the border in Belgium, but I looked out of the window at snow falling and decided to head back to bed instead! Later that afternoon, I headed out, first lining my boots with plastic bags! These boots were a huge investment before I left New Zealand, and had served me well over the past year, but are now falling to bits and I keep getting wet feet. I went to the Mudam, the museum of modern art up in Kirchberg suburb, where all of the fancy offices and European parliament buildings are. The building was designed by I. M .Pei, the guy who whacked the big glass pyramid in front of the Louvre in Paris, and has similar glass artifacts. In the main entrance hall is a cool work, a two-story tall structure that has a machine winding many tiny threads into a massive rope, depicting the nervous system. You can climb up to the top and look out of the windows of the view over Luxembourg, its very cool. Other than that, I picked a bad day to go, as they were setting up all of the new exhibitions and I could only see their standing exhibits.

Thursday was similarly laid back, I spent most of the day in pursuit of new shoes, eventually giving up on finding women's boots that fit my massive feet and just buying mens shoes instead. I was trying on shoes in the mens department and got told by a sales assistant that I was on the wrong floor, and then got told at the cashier that if I didn't take the boxes with me, I couldn't return them if they didn't fit my boyfriend! Way to rub salt into the wound! And now, after a night out on Thursday and a day with the kids today, I'm off to spent the night in Metz, a city about an hours drive into France.

No comments:

Post a Comment