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Is it bad that when I think of the word “strike,” the first thing that pops into my head is this:

Ahem. Right.

Anyway, there are transportation strikes in France right now, which means that today’s trip to the Centre Chopin to see about renting a piano took about twice as long and was at least three times as inconvenient as it might have been. Here’s how it went.

-Bus #21 from Cité Universitaire to Châtelet. (I actually confused my buses–it’s the #28 that goes to Denfert-Rochereau, where I actually wanted to end up…whoops!)
-Meandering around underground at Châtelet to find the #11 (brown).
-Taking the #11 to Père Lachaise.
-Changing to the #3 (ugly olive green–they couldn’t have come up with something better?) to Gambetta.

Gambetta was my final destination. I walked the wrong direction on Rue des Pyrénées for a while, as usual, then realized the numbers were going up and turned around. When I did finally find the Centre Chopin, everything was smooth sailing. “Bonjour, je voudrais louer un piano!” The guy who helped me let me do the whole thing in French, even when it became clear that I was American, and he found me a nice Yamaha upright for 45 euro a month. I can’t wait to have a piano in my room. It’s going to be delivered next Tuesday, right before I leave for Italy on the 17th.

Anyway, then I had a jambon-beurre-tomates sêches sandwich (ham and sundried tomatoes? Yes, please! Plus there was lettuce on the sandwich, so it was healthy, right?) and got back on the train.

-#3 (olive green) to République.
-Changing to the #5 (orange) at République and taking it to Place d’Italie.
-Changing to the #7 (pink! awwww!) at Place d’Italie and taking it to Porte d’Italie (I probably could have walked that one, but I didn’t want to get caught in the rain).
-Bursting out into the fresh cold rainy air to get on the tram from Porte d’Italie to Cité Universitaire.

I left my dorm before 11 and didn’t make it back until nearly 2! I was so knocked out that I slept for an hour and a half. Now I’m blogging (obviously) and contemplating practicing. Or not. Somewhere in this building is my motivation. It can’t have gone far.