train coffee…

the absolutely worst coffee you can get on a train is probably the coffee served from the trolley on board the CISalpino trains…although i probably should qualify that a bit. it’s excellent coffee if (and only if, as us scientists are wont to say) you are in need of a good source of energy: just remember to carry two iron spoons and a bit of wire with you to complete the battery…there have been rumours circulating that on occassion the CIS trolleys were out of coffee after the CIS train manager had to confiscate all supplies to jump start the CISalpino after it got stuck again on the stuttgart–zürich route. however, from a beverages point of view, CISalpino and coffee clearly were never intended to live together in the same sentence. it’s just awful.

german ICE-T train coffee is marginally better: you do get heartburn but the delay between imbibing and the onset of the slightly burning irritation in your esophagus is much longer than with the CISalpino battery juice. also, it at least aspires to be a coffee: it almost tastes like one — and at the very least you get more burn for your buck: it’s a reasonably sized paper cup instead of the espresso sized CISalpino one (though that could be due to a rudimentary, really almost forgotten concern for the health of their passengers…nah, i’ve got to admit that’s highly unlikely, forget it)…unfortunately, it won’t do you any good in case of sudden train breakdowns: not really the stuff batteries are made of.

that leaves us with the german IC train coffee which, i’m surprised and at the same time happy to report is on average quite drinkable and actually tastes like coffee!

other good sources for coffee: valentino’s in zürich mainstation (underground shopping area, opposite the escalators leading directly to the main tracks, reasonably sized cup to go for CHF 2.80), then, not really as much of a last resort as it sounds, mcdonalds’s latte macchiato which tastes quite OK.

wedding day(s)

we are just watching the royal wedding on telly as broadcast by the BBC (carried on the digital cable channels here in switzerland)…(well, actually, dorothee has been following every royal move since about 13:00 (12:00 GMST), i’ve been doing the weekend shopping and have just returned)…a truly good day to get married, i think…in fact, the best day really to get married, we did the same — 18 years ago 🙂

so: all the best to camilla & charles windsor 🙂

p.s.: got more of the mystery emails…and i’ve to say they drag you in…slowly, but they get you almost “addicted” — which is heightened by the fact that you cannot just turn the page (or, sneaky, sneaky, take a look at the end of the book just to rest assured that there’s a happy ending [did i ever mention that i’m a sucker for happy endings?]) but instead have to wait for the next email to arrive…a bit of a “realtime” mystery…cool device.

mysterious emails

today’s guardian newsblog has a rather intriguing blog entry on an electronic mystery. while i usually am not that taken with electronic books (i’m waiting for the commercial, consumer-grade, high-resolution, high-contrast electronic paper devices with builtin WLAN/UMTS), this electronic mystery is a electronic or online with a twist: it picks up the old device of telling a story as a sequence of letters — only instead of getting a whole web page full with emails, the authors of this mystery will, over the course of three weeks, send the emails to your mail account; almost as if you were bcc’d on those emails…this does sound rather interesting and i’m curious enough to hop on over to their web site & fork over USD 7.95…and anxiously await the first email to arrive in my inbox…

lunch roast

enticed by our first visit to wheelers pub we have planned for today to forego cooking lunch ourselves and instead have a lunch roast at wheelers…when we get there shortly after 12:00 the lounge area is empty and for a moment we are not quite sure whether they do serve lunch in the lounge and i go back to the kitchen (which we passed on our way to the lounge) and inquire: yes, they do serve lunch in the lounge.

the lounge really has (almost) the feel of a gentlemen’s club — or, rather, as one would imagine a gentlemen’s club 🙂 (having never been in one…) almost, because the entrance area might benefit from having more proper storage space: it’s a bit of a jumble..the largest part of the room is decorated like a library with lots of leather armchairs arranged in small groups of twos and fours. at the end of the lounge is a wall-covering black bookshelf with lots of english books.

we quickly order the sunday roast, a pint of guinness (me) and a pint of cider (dorothee) — the yorkshire pudding, we are informed a little while later, won’t be ready for another half hour, so we add a soup of the day and decided to wait for the yorkshire pudding to join the roast — we are in absolutely no hurry. when it arrives, the sunday roast is very good, the roast is well done, the potatoes roasted, the vegetables quite nice. we enjoy our meal and the “scenery” 🙂

definitely worth a repeat.