Friday, August 03, 2007


The internet access I bought the day before wasn't working anymore this morning. Which was disappointing — it was supposed to work for three days. The front desk called the company managing the wifi and we found out the credit card didn't go through. I think I may have mistyped some info, so note to self: if you're desperately in need of internet and have no money, as a last resort you can mistype your credit card "confirmation number" on the back of the card.

After I told Becky and Toni about Paul Klee, they decided they were interested in the seeing museum — so we planned to meet there at 1:00. In the meantime, I did my laundry and they visited the Einsteinhaus. I met two more Aussies in the laundry room. They're everywhere, and seem to travel in pairs.

The museum was pricey (I think 16 or 18 CHF) but worth it. We looked at everything in the permanent collection and temporary exhibition. I think Toni's favorites were the puppets. I love how Klee paired titles and images, and explored so many possibilities without worrying too much about the outcome. At least that's how his work feels to me. When we were done we got some food from the restaurant there and went to a stage where there was a puppeteer improvising with replicas of Klee's puppets. It was incredibly entertaining — kids and adults alike laughed at each "skit" featuring a different puppet or pair of puppets. A lot of it you didn't need to know German to understand, testifying both to the skill of the puppeteer and the composition of the audience.

Rain clouds were gathering outside, but they didn't look gloomy yet. We took the bus back to Central Bern and checked if the museum of theater was still open (Becky and Toni study theater). It wasn't — though there was a guy who told us "it's not open tomorrow either, but if you come at 9:00 am someone might be here to let you in anyway." In most big cities in America that would sound sketchy, but here it is a reasonable business practice for a museum that doesn't get much traffic.

As we walked back to the hostel the rain picked up. We were basically drenched by the time we got back. Or at least I was, Becky and Toni had rain jackets. It was warm, so I didn't mind.

We walked into the room somewhere around 6:00 pm. My laptop was no longer sitting where I left it charging. I looked around the room a bit, went upstairs to the internet area to see if someone borrowed it, and finally just sat down to fold my laundry from earlier. I was in disbelief, so I hadn't said anything yet. When I finished my laundry I went to the reception desk. No help, really. I knew I couldn't do anything but try and narrow the time down by asking people when they where around and last saw it. The worst part is that when you've been robbed, everyone looks like a thief. Even after playing cards the day before.

Becky, Toni and I went out for dinner, settling on a Chinese place. I had a Thai dish, which was strangely authentic for a Chinese place in Switzerland. I asked Becky and Toni more about their school and the people they study with. This lead to a conversation involving me contributing some thoughts from Sartre, and them giving examples of how people act in groups, and why leaders are necessary. It was a good existential yet practical conversation.

Back at the hostel we talked a bit more, some other people came and went, but it wasn't long before we crashed. Which is good, considering my attention was pretty well diverted.

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