Saturday, 30 January 2016

Travelling: Germany 2016 day 1

At 8.30pm yesterday we checked in on our ferry from Malmö to Travemünde. We got on board shortly afterwards and entered our cabins. We left our stuff there and then went on to check out the dinner buffet. It was really nice. Salads, shrimps, chicken, beef, fish, pasta... Anything you could really want. We helped ourselves and then sat down, we met some people that my dad and the boss knew and talked with them for the rest of the evening. After dinner we had a beer each at the bar and then went to sleep. The ferry had departed at 10pm and we went to bed around 11.30pm.

I couldn't sleep. It was pretty rough seas this night, and I could feel it rolling beneath me. I had never slept on a ferry or boat before so it was a brand new experience. The engines were roaring, and at some points made my cabin door vibrate in its frame, which made it hard to sleep, and the bed itself was the hardest bed I've ever tried to sleep on (that includes the floor in a gym hall). I don't think I slept much, perhaps two hours in the whole night. At 5.30am my alarm went off, and just after 6am we went back to the buffet to have breakfast. Met up with the people from the day before. Breakfast buffets are always nice. I'm not big on breakfast, but breakfast buffets can make me eat a lot.

Turns out the ferry had become late and we docked at Travemünde at 7.30pm, half an hour later than planned. Our car was among the last ones to get off so the next part of the trip started late. I fell asleep pretty much as soon as we had left the harbour. Around 1pm I woke up, we were not very far from Cologne, our final destination, and we decided to make a pit stop for food and filling up the car on fuel. And then we continued on. After several wrong turns we found our hotel and checked in. We basically just dropped our stuff in our rooms, and then got back into the car to find our way to the fair hall. After a few wrong turns we found our way there. It's interesting that there were so many wrong turns seeing as dad and the boss had been going to the exact same place for the past five or six years.

In any case we got there and first off we said hello to every other Swedish company there. This trip is for work and not for fun, although there will be room for fun as well. It's Europe´s largest fair for confectionary companies and there were representatives from a lot of countries around the world. Our place is in the European section, of course, but I'm more interested in checking out the Asian part, and especially the three Japanese companies that are here. We'll see if I can find the time. After we had said hello we went to set up our corner, which didn't take long. Screwed a few shelves into the wall and put out some samples.

When we were done, and after talking some more, we took the train back to the hotel and left the car at the fair. It makes everything easier, I've been told. I quickly showered and unpacked and then we went to meet up with a few of the Swedes at a bar close-by called the Dominikaner. We had a beer each while we waited. We were supposed to have dinner with another company, but their representatives had problems with their lodgings and we decided to postpone our plans for another night. Instead, the three of us went alone to the intended restaurant, Maredo, and had some nice steaks for dinner. Then we went back to the hotel.

That's been the whole day. It's been fun, but also tiresome and stressful. I'm kind of nervous about tomorrow, because I'm not yet entirely sure how everything will work and what exactly I'm supposed to do. I think it's going to be sort of like my work at the tourist agency, where I answer questions about what we sell. I can handle English, but I was asked to come along because I know more languages than English, and I'm kind of nervous about using French and Japanese, especially French because I haven't talked French properly in maybe three years. Because of that I've brought books in French to read to get into it again, as well as my grammar book. The sort of answers I'm supposed to provide include words that are not in my vocabulary in either French or Japanese. But hopefully everything will work out fine! :)

Good night!

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