“First, I want to especially explain about the toilet,” says Herr Wimpy.
Of course he does. On this trip, everyone wants to explain about the toilets. We’re tired and wet (it’s raining in Hamburg) and desperate for tea but our host wants to explain about the toilet.
We pay careful attention while Herr W shows us precisely how the toilet door works. Some guests, we are told, think that you have to pull it really hard – the toilet door that is – but it is an original feature and is to be treated gently. We promise to treat it like a newly born babe but Herr W is not satisfied until he has shown us a couple more times how to open and close the door. There is no lock on the toilet door.
We are then taken to see the bathroom and shown which towels are ours and which towels we MUST NOT use. We are shown the hooks for our towels which MUST NOT be taken out of the bathroom for fear of damaging the wooden floor which is an original feature. There is no lock on the bathroom door.
Actually, we already knew about the floor as we were asked to remove our shoes by the door on entry to the apartment. Which is fair enough, I guess.
The bedroom is small but that’s ok. We’re only staying in Hamburg for one night; tomorrow we’re off to Denmark.
Which is just as well because I am finding Herr Wimpy rather creepy. For some reason, he reminds me of a programme I once saw about this German chap who used to abduct people and then eat them. Herr Wimpy, I feel, has the rangy look of a cannibal and red blotches on his face. There is no lock on the bedroom door.
We put down our backpacks – carefully – and Herr W gives us the front door keys. “Can you show me where we can make a cup of tea?” asks ActorLaddie.
“No, you MUST NOT use the kitchen: it is out of bounds,” says Herr W.
Of course it is. A cannibal would naturally want to keep the kitchen to themselves. It all makes sense.
The visitors’ book on the desk has various comments from previous guests and no-one actually mentions having bites taken from their arms.
Nevertheless, we push the cases in front of the bedroom door, just to be on the safe side.