Monday, July 4, 2011

still more on Hamburg, Germany

You may have hear of Tex-Mex cuisine but I bet you don't know Ham-Mex. That is unless you've been to Jim Burritos Cantina in the Sternschanze (a section of Hamburg locally known as the schanze). The atmosphere is quirky with Mexican wrestling posters adorning the walls. The only down side, it was distractingly noisy when busy, which would basically cover the time between opening and closing. The burritos are large and tasty. Mine was chorizo to which I added liberal doses of my favorite among the numerous hot sauces available.

Got a nasty shock the other day when I checked my bank account to see if the ATM withdrawal (of Euros) had shown up. It had. All I can say is, the percentage that it cost me to convert dollars to Euros was enough to piss off the pope and I have the lowest available rate through my credit union. So, on top of the fact that the exchange rate is piss-poor going from dollars to Euros, I had fork over quite a few bucks for the privilege. Note to travelers, check with your financial institution regarding the cost of withdrawing money before coming to Europe. You will really have no choice but it could avert a nasty shock. Many institutions charge a fee on top of a percentage for every transaction. Also, many establishments here do not accept credit cards. I don't mean that they, for instance, don't accept American Express. I am saying they don't take credit cards at all. Oh, and by the by, when you find a place that does accept your card, each of those transactions will cost you something over and above the lousy exchange rate.

I have much more to tell, but it's late. I will quit here and upload to the blog and make a link from Facebook to the blog- because I can't trust Facebook to do it automatically.