Cascading delays returning from Berlin mean that I miss my connection in Köln; I’m imagining a hotel and some time to explore Köln but instead the Deutsche Bahn has a suprise suggestion: a taxi. 4 variously reluctant guys are led by an enthusiastic female cab driver through the staion to her cab, promising a “first class” trip and that we would all ride “ze Ferry Wheel” once in Brussels. In the front seat, a guy from Melbourne, who phoned ahead to his hostel in Brussels that he’d be arriving around midnight and then leaving again at 5:30 to catch his Bus to London. I sat in the back between a guy from Mexico, who tried in vain to sleep during the 2 1/2 hour drive and described the trip presciently as “loco”, and a guy from Guinea, who helpfully also spoke Spanish and let me on where I could get excellent Nigerian food in Amsterdam. He then mentioned a desire, “if by the grace of god” to visit New York, though then rather darkly and broadly condemned the city for the “abundance of pleasure” of its inhabitants. Arriving in Brussels, the cabbie’s navigation system directed us by the European Parliament and suddenly I became the “expert” about Brussels as I tried to give information about what various buildings were (that’s the King’s Palace, or at least it’s behind that) and assure the others that we were indeed heading toward both the Midi and “South” train station(s). For future reference: the cab fare is about 250 EUR, happily paid this time by the DB.