It's at time like this... and the French wonder why....

So despite all the technology advances in the world, sometimes people just need people, unfortunately today I just had the staff at the Hilton La Defense, France to deal with.

At dinner last night I managed to talk Roger into coming swimming this morning. Laurent suggested that there was a much better palce to go swimming than the private Gym, 25m pool, at a cost of 20-euro's day membership. There was within walking distance a 50m public pool for less than 4euro.

A quick call to Roger at his hotel this morning and we agreed to meet there. I got the address from swimmersguide.com tried to find it on Google Earth, Google Maps, Mapquest and failed, went down to the Hilton reception and asked a person for directions.

  1. They only had a map of the direct area
  2. The receptionist calls for directions but just says "get a taxi as we can't provide directions"
  3. Outside I got to the first two taxis, both refuse to take me
  4. I go back in, speak to someone else at the Hilton reception desk, he asks me for the phone number, he calls, no answer. He calls the hotel porter and asks about a taxi to the pool, the porter says you have to agree to pay the 10-euro minimum
  5. I ask the Hilton receptionist why is this so difficult? He says it is not his fault he is doing his best and its not his fault if they don't answer the phone. I wonder why he can't check the number himself and why he doesn't really want to help?
  6. I go downstairs, the porter comes out, blews a whistle for a taxi opens the back door I get in expecting the porter to explain to the cab driver.... the porter slams the taxi door shut and goes back in the hotel
  7. I ask the cab drive in French if he speaks English, he says no, French only. I ask in my best "pigeon" French for the Piscine Center Olympique at Courbevoie - obviosuly not pleased he says he doesn't know where it is.
  8. I show him the address on my Palm Treo, he makes half hearted effort to find it on his onboard computer and shakes his head.
  9. I'm back in my room completely frustrated with how difficult it is to do a simple things in France



and the French often wonder why they are percieved as arrogant and cold by the British and Americans. I wonder...
  • Current Mood: Frustrated
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