June 26, 2005

Proset, Proset, Proset, Gemütlichkeit

…eins, zwo, drei… ZUFER!

Saturday the 18th of June

Munich is absolutely brilliant!
I had a memorable day and a half in this great city of Munich and had the pleasure to stay in Raimundís massive mansion (also known as Raimundís home but it looked like a palace!). I arrived in Munich after 4 pm after an interesting train journey. Fortunately the German trains are reliable and really nice. However, this does not mean that all the passengers are. I spread my considerable amount of luggage all over the car hoping that nobody else will come there and disturb my journey but ďluckilyĒ a loud group of chavs found their way to the car and squeezed in. Conveniently, they also had a lovely 20-year old radio which played German rap. Brilliant! It was a unique journey.

Raimund picked me up from the railway station and as soon as we had left my luggage in his car we headed off to a Volksmusikkonzert. We walked through the centre and I was surprised to realize that I even reconised some places from my visit 3 years ago. We took the U-Bahn(the underground) to the Olympic Park, where a Volksmusikkonzert took place. The place had been built for the Olympic Games for 1972 and was massive compared to the Finnish Olympic Stadium.
The artist was Ambros, an Austrian singer who sings Volksmusik, quite traditional and very different from what Iím used to hearing in Warwick Studentsí Union.
The concert tent was boiling hot and really packed with people. The concert was a positive surprise and the music was honestly really fun. At the start I was pretty suspicious if the music is going to be any good. However, I enjoyed the music so much it was hard to believe that the concert went on as long as for 2 and half hours. The most famous song from Ambros is Ski Fahren, which apparently is always played in the ski resorts in the Alps. Quite a few Raimundís friends were around as well and I had a good chance to practice my German. Everyone was really hungry after jumping, singing and dancing in the hot tent for a couple of hours, so pizza and kebab was more than welcome. Unfortunately they donít sell my new favorite drink, Almdudler(the Austrian herb lemonade), in Germany so I had to have an apple schorle. That consists of half a bottle of apple juice and the other half of sparkling water.

We soon headed to the centre to meet Raimís sister and her friend. The concert had gone on for so long that it was already dark and Raimund only had his sunglasses as it had been really sunny at the time we went to the Olympic Park. It must have looked unusual to see someone wear sunglasses in the middle of the night.

We went for a cocktail in the centre and I started feeling really tired after having such a late night and a hectic day. I noticed itís probably the time to go to bed when I was speaking German, English and Finnish all at the same time and was making no sense whatsoever. We were supposed to go to a night club but then all of us were feeling so exhausted that we decided to take an U-Bahn to the car. I passed out at the U-Bahn station when we were waiting for the last train of the night.

We got off at the Marienplatz and as a ďpleasantĒ surprise discovered that we only have the escalators to one direction and of course that had to be down to the station rather than up, where we were trying to go. Crazy German design! We concluded that we have no option but run really quick up the escalators even if they were moving down. We started running but the escalators were moving really fast and it was much harder than we thought. Also I felt I was moving nowhere because as I was running up the escalators were coming down. I felt absolutely dead because I was so tired and also tipsy because I had just drunken a cocktail 15 mins before. Amazingly, I made it to the top and a random German guy was so amused with our task that he was following my struggle in the escalators and cheering. After running I could barely walk and I had to sit down for a while.
We got to Raimundís house which is absolutely huge with marble floors and stairs. It was very dark and as soon as we had dragged the mattress and sleeping bag to Raimís soom I just collapsed.

Sunday 19.6

We woke up after a good nightís sleep and had a lovely breakfast in the patio in the sun. There is a stream in the back garden and they even had some pet ducks like in Warwick. Sweet!
We walked around in the centre and climbed up Peterís Church tower where we had a lovely view over the city. We also went to a river where they had surfers.
We visited Hofbršuhaus, a famous brewery in Munich and I tried some Weissbier. I was a nice surprise as normally I donít particularly like beer. Weissbier has a sweeter and milder taste than lager, it is darker and unclear unlike lager. We tasted also some Weisswurst, Ēwhite sausageĒ which is unique for Munich. These sausages are first boiled in water and there are certain manners how you need to eat them. For instance when you pick the sausage from the boiling water you should not pierce the skin but lift it so that it remains intact. The taste was really nice and unfortunately you can only buy Weisswurst in Bavaria so Iíll have to handle the rest of the summer without it. There also was a camping equipment shop called Napapijri, which is very close to the Finnish word for the Arctic Circle. Weirdly, they had Norwegian flags everywhere.
After walking through the English Garden Park we drove to a Bergsee, a ďmountain lakeĒ. We went to a lake in Kochel, and the scenery was absolutely beautiful Water was really cold as these mountain lakes are typically very deep. It was relaxing just to swim and sunbathe. There was a tiny village at the lake and the lake was surrounded by the Alps.
We were trying to work out what a bumblebee is in German but we didnít get far. Raimund suggested it must be Bienemayer, which I doubt.
After coming back to the house, we went to a Biergarten near the house and had big Radlers. I wish we had those also in Finland! There are always some nice trees like chestnuts or similar and Biergartens have a special atmosphere.

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