Monday, May 14, 2007

2 May: All About Stuttgart

We had a special IWC meeting today; instead of our usual speaker at Café Merlin, we met downtown at the offices of Stuttgart Marketing, the firm that promotes business and tourism for the city of Stuttgart. I was supposed to go with Eliza on the U-Bahn but I had to leave a message with her husband last night and then never got a hold of her this morning. So I took the U4 alone to Charlottenplatz and then walked across the Schlossplatz en route to the meeting. This was the earliest I have ever been in downtown Stuttgart – it was amazing to see it rather deserted! The sky was clear blue, the fountains were looking lovely, and the chesnut trees were in full bloom.

I found the office near the Hauptbahnhof without too much difficulty and climbed up to the third floor. There were about ten of us at the meeting – mostly familiar faces (Anne W., Heather, Shannon, Lauris, Veerle) and a few new ones, including a very sweet young woman from Lithuania named Vaida and a new English woman named Jackie, who brought her 10-year-old daughter. I was early for once so I chatted for a few minutes with Lauris and the presenter in German. We had coffee and butterbrezeln and listened to a very nice presentation about the city. I was familiar with most of the sights and events that were discussed, with the exception of the Stuttgart Summer Festival, a gourmet food event that takes place in the Schlossgarten in August. We will obviously need to check that out! I also noted the dates for this year’s Weindorf and Weihnachtsmarkt.

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