1 May, 1958
Last night in all small compact time excitement was king. For we were paid & the deutsche marks bought. The stores in town would be open for an hour or so & there was a book on license plates of the world I just had to have. This mad desire and the pressure of time drove me to take a cab. This wa a bouncy fast ride over cobblestone streets in & out of bicycles, buses, people etc. Benz (?) This was a point of grand excitement in itself. (As we all know I love said car.) The excitement & reassurance of money made us daring enough to enter shops & try to buy the few things we wanted. I had underestimated the prices & overestimated the ability on the part of the shopkeepers to speak English. It was so trying a venture that great energy was consumed. People were more courteous & friendly when not able to speak English than those who did. Those who spoke English were careful to short change and over price.
We finally had Wiener schnitzel & beer which was very good. The inevitable long walk consumed the rest of our trip. I was & am no nearer to intimacy with inhabitants of a town than I have ever been in an army town. Perhaps some how some way this president can be broken.