Fido and me

Fido and me
Fido and me

Friday, April 30, 2010

Kabop (Kebab) Adventures in Metz


In September of 2004, a friend and I took trains from Paris to Metz, France, and then on to Saarburg Germany.  We spent two nights in Metz in the French province of Lorraine.

When it was under German rule, Lorraine was called Lothringen.  But it had been a French city for a long time by the time Laurie and I arrived and it is likely to stay so.   That made it more difficult for Laurie and me.  We both speak a little German but only a French phrase or two.

The first morning in the city, I went out to explore a little while Laurie, who woke up feeling under the weather,  stayed at the hotel to sleep.   My sister had told me that there was a lovely pedestrian area in Metz - with shops and eating places.  I had a map from the hotel which I followed until it showed a street that didn't exist and I was stymied in my search.

I tried asking people who looked friendly for directions, but most spoke neither English or German.  One nice lady called back a friend from whom she had just parted.  The second woman did speak some German; but I think I misunderstood her, because I walked quite awhile before I concluded this was the wrong direction.  Unfortunately, by that time, most of the shops had closed for their two-hour lunch break - no help there.

Walking by a shop offering Kabops, I decided to try one.  Marilyn, my sister, and I had often seen "Kabop Shops" (as we called them) in Germany and promised ourselves to try one sometime.  We hadn't done so - now here was my chance.

The young man behind the counter looked as if he might be from the Middle East, and he greeted me in a flow of French.  I was unsure if he was asking me what I wanted or telling me that the shop was about to close.  I asked him if he spoke English.  He shook his head. On the off chance that he might know a little German, I tried that language.  His face broke into a huge smile.  He was a new resident of France.  He had worked in Germany during the prior two years and was so happy to have someone with whom to review his German language skills.  The shop was quite empty and so he told me the story of his life, some of which I understood, while he prepared my kabop.  It was more on the order of an exotic wrap than the shish kabob I had expected.  

We said a German "Wiedersehen" and I left, munching.

Views from Metz exploration:


Later Laurie felt better, but not good enough for a kabop.  Eventually we found our way to the center of Metz and a cafe where she could have a late lunch.  Then we explored more of the city, including the Cathedral and a shopping mall.  We had made so many twists and turns that as we toured that we had an almost impossible time finding the way back to our hotel.  Our mileage probably topped five miles.   Metz has a more difficult street configuration than Waukesha, my home city, even though I'm not sure anyone who has spent a couple of hours lost in Waukesha would agree.

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