7:40 Checked out.
8:15 Train station. The way was a little confusing, and I was glad I had GPS on my phone.
8:20 Bought a ticket to Nancy, then to Saverne. I was glad that the communication went successfully. EUR 31.20.
8:24 Platform, then on train right away. The train was almost empty.
8:30 The train started. I slept through the ride.
9:30 Ticket check.
10:00 Nancy, France. I had to type “France” after “Nancy” every time I googled this city, because pictures of random women kept popping up.
10:05 I found out that there was no locker in this station, which meant that I had to carry my backpack around, unfortunately.
10:15 Masion des soeurs macaron, the origin of macaron. I tasted a sample bergamotes candy and bought a dozen of macarons. EUR 7.80.
10:20 Place Stanislas. It was huge, and the gilded gates to the square were fancy. There were many groups of tourists.
I sat down in a corner and opened up the box of macarons. They were different from the ones I had had before – no cream, and just one shell. The outside was very crispy and felt almost like a biscuit, and inside was moist and chewy. It tasted strongly of vanilla and was very sweet. It would have been amazing with a cup of tea.
10:40 Started walking.
10:52 Musée Historique Lorrain. EUR 2.50.
I walked around the first floor, and all the descriptions were written in French. There were statues from 15th century and china from 18th century. There were self-portraits on the second floor.
There was a special exhibition, été 1914, on the second floor. They had English descriptions! Mostly French, but they had some English.
The exhibition talked about the war in 1870, the build-up up to the summer of 1914, and how the cities such as Strasbourg, Metz, and Nancy were influenced. They had military equipments and propaganda posters from that time period.
12:22 I was in a restaurant district, and I walked in to a crowded, casual, but modern-looking restaurant called L’escale. The host was very energetic.
I ordered a 3-course menu and a glass of white wine. Wine was fruity and not too sweet.
12:30 Appetizer, tartare de boeuf. Raw beef + mayo + relish, and raw onions and tomatoes on the side. It was great! It looked very pretty too.
13:00 I had no idea what to order for the main dish, and the waiter described things briefly such as fish, pasta, chicken, etc. for me. I ordered chicken, which turned out to be a stir fried noodle, obviously Asian. It was okay, but it felt weird. An Asian eating Asian food at a French restaurant in France.
13:34 Dessert, gâteau chocolat-noisettes. It was alright.
There were children nearby screaming and kicking a soccer ball.
13:55 Out. EUR 16.50.
Started walking toward the American monument.
14:20 I came near the location, but there were old apartments and didn’t seem like there would be anything touristy nearby. So I turned around. It felt quite different from the clean and luxurious downtown area.
14:55 Train station.
16:00 Train. There was a few passengers on board.
16:15 Train started. The sky started to clear a little.
17:10 Saverne, France. Cloudy again. I was exhausted from carrying my backpack around in Nancy, so I had a pretty good nap on the train.
Saverne was a small town near Strasbourg, which I chose because it had a hostel where Strasbourg didn’t. It was a pretty little town. The houses felt distinct from other towns (I guessed they were Alsatian houses). There were few tourists, and even fewer Asians. I walked along the area that seemed to be downtown, and I surprisingly didn’t see many restaurants.
17:20 Hostel. It was in a corner of a castle (a real castle). I had to walk around the building and up the stairs. I was again glad I had a backpack, not a luggage, because there was no elevator.
The receptionist spoke little English, so we had to use a lot of body language. EUR 56.80.
17:35 Room. I got the one at the end of the corridor, and surprisingly, I had a private room! The WiFi didn’t work in the room, but for the price, it was amazing. The view out the window was nice, too.
The washrooms and shower facility upstairs smelled a little, but it was bearable.
18:25 Out for a walk.
I walked to the courtyard behind the castle, and there were tens of cars parked. I was curious so I went up to it, and a guy (who appeared to be in charge) waved at me and told me to come in since it’s free. So I (unintentionally) ended up looking at cars.
18:50 I was walking through downtown and I found a supermarket, so I bought a 1.5L bottle of water. EUR 0.65.
19:00 Most stores were closed, so I came back to the hostel to find tons of young children. They seemed to be on a field trip. That was probably why I was assigned a private room.
20:00 Went to the lobby to find children playing hide-and-seek in the corridor and went to the shower to find children waiting in line.
21:30 Second shot at shower, and there were still chidlren.
22:10 Finally, children went to bed. Shower time.
22:40 Children went to bed, but the adults in charge took over the lobby and talked for a long time. The room wasn’t soundproof. Sigh.
23:30 Fell asleep.