I took a day trip to Frankfurt/Main to attend the Wikimedia e.V. yearly meeting. 7.15 from home, 0.45 back, not bad. I was at the main train station and had already obtained directions for getting to the meeting place from the tourist office. I had printed out all the stuff for the meeting last night - agenda, candidates, description how to get to the place, etc. Except the home page for the Haus der Jugend was programmed with frames and Firefox decided to just print out the top frame, which was the navigation. I didn't check the printouts until I was almost in the station... have I mentioned that frames are EVIL?

I decided to pass on the wrapped sandwiches on the train and get something from the station. Across from the tourist office was a Starbucks coffee. Now, this did not get popular in the States until long after I was in Germany, but whatever, I've heard they have good coffee. Although, what I *really* want is a Chai like the one we have at school from a machine for 90 cents.

They do have Chai at Starbucks, so I looked over the sandwich assortment. Not really exciting. An old-looking bagel with cream cheese. A ciabatta with olive oil. A seeded roll with turkey. Boring, but I'll add a Cinnamon Roll for dessert. I take the seeded roll with turkey, order the cinnamon roll and a mid-size chai. "That will be 9 Euros." NINE Euros? For that price I can have a warm meal! Oh well, the chai will be warm. I pay, collect my stuff and leave.

On my way to the bus I take a sip of the cup that has an extra thing for holding a hot cup. The liquid inside is not hot. It is luke-warm. Yuck. But I have to get to the bus, which will be leaving in a few minutes. I don't open the food yet, as the bus driver gives it a hard stare and the bus is actually so clean that you could sit on the floor (that never is the case in Berlin). My stomach growls at me, but it is only 20 minutes. I drink the chai, which has almost reached Iced Chai status.

After getting off the bus I hungrigly grab the turkey roll - yuck. The bread is old, and soggy in places. The turkey is all right, but dressed with just some mayo. I hate mayo, I wasn't looking. No tomato, no lettuce, no nothing. It was hard going, but I am hungry and finish it off, standing looking over the Main, a wide and dirty river running through Frankfurt. I get out the cinnamon roll, remembering the soft, gooey, cinnamony rolls of my childhood. This one might have been soft once, but it's not now. I wouldn't call it crunchy, it is just hard - it is at least a day old. Since this is the only food I'll be having before heading back around 8pm, I make myself eat it. Luckily, I still have some water from the train to wash it down. Brrrr.

So Starbucks sells luke-warm liquid, soggy rolls and stale desserts at horrendous prices. They must manage to make do with no repeat customers, because I sure am not planning on spending any more of my hard-earned cash there anytime in the near future.

BTW - on the way back I had half an hour and cased the station - there were lots of different sandwich things to be had, and also a Gosch stand that would serve a warm meal, sitting down, outside in the cold. Interesting concept, I ordered the Prawn and fried noodles with something to drink - was only 6.90 Euros. The noodles came out very hot, very steamy, stayed warm until I was finished, were nice and spicy - very enjoyable. This price was right! Of course, I would have preferred for it to be 20 degrees Celsius outside......

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