In this blog I will cover the past few days of fun in Munich. Firstly, a mutual friend at Leeds put me in touch with some new friends who are also working in Munich (aww friends…Year Abroad friends). On Friday night, we met for a drink at the Löwenbräu, a world famous Bierkeller which has been delivering thirst-quenching Weißbier since 1383. And of course the beer didn’t disappoint. There was a downside to our enjoyment…we lads managed to guzzle our way through two Steins in the same time our poor guests sipped a sensible glass of wine. But after all it was Friday night so we thought…what the hell, why not. You Only Live Abroad Once #yolao etc. And by the end of it Greggers was being possibly a bit too enthusiastic about tomorrow’s swim. Having sort of embarrassed ourselves completely, we did what any self-respecting Englishmen would have done: we pursued a damage limitation strategy. We managed not to get kicked out and thereby cleared our names! We were pleasantly surprised when we were told we could take all the time we wanted to finish our drinks – This is in stark contrast to the “that’s your lot” attitude from the grubby pub landlords in Leeds, who manage to include Dickensian brutality free of charge in their service.
We awoke the next morning to do a spot of Lederhosen shopping at C&A in Marienplatz. A neccessary cost, known to pessimistic people/accountants as “a lot of money” but the more business-orientated amongst us realised that this was an investment, an opportunity but most importantly a moment to savour. However, investment is a dangerous word because it can justify almost any expenditure as long as it provides future benefits. Lederhosen successfully fitted, we felt prepared for the coming months, if not years of leathery love and affection, and we embarked on an expedition to Munich’s Ostpark.
We’re not quite sure whose idea it was but either way Nath was first to host an evening of entertainment mimicking Das perfekte Dinner (the German version of Come Dine with Me). After a delicious meal we were whisked off to the famous swimming area of Michaelibad (also the name of the nearest U-Bahn stop). We paid less than 3€ for a late evening swim which entitled us to two and a half hours in the pool, sauna, steam room, jacuzzi, outdoor heated pool and of course a massive slide. Needless to say it was just what the Doktor ordered and we parted our ways feeling relaxed to the bones.
On Sunday my brother flew in from London! I met a slightly nervous Alfie at Terminal 1. I realised that he had been acting as a sort of clothes-mule and had no idea what had been packed into the bag he was delivering. He was instructed by his commander-in-chiefs (our parents) to board a flight to Munich after which he would be contacted by a tall man with dark glasses. The instructions were simple. Deliver the package and lie low as a tourist in Munich for four days. This meant visiting plenty of art galleries and museums. At the end of the mission he would return to London inconspicuously. In the end it turned out to be possibly a bit less dramatic than even Mum could have dreamt up. The tall man was in fact me in jeans and trainers, and the package was a load of clothes I’d forgotten.
Having had a bite to eat we went for a stroll around Marienplatz. Upon our return to Hauptbahnhof, we stumbled across a cinema which was showing a Bavarian comedy. It has to be up there with the most outrageous films I’ve ever seen. It is called “Wer’s glaubt wird selig” and to briefly summarise, it centers around a man called Georg who tries to rectify the honour of his village, having brought a terrible evil upon it. The terrible evil being accidentally killing his mother in law by going at it so hard, that a crucifix hanging on the adjacent wall crushed old Daisy to death. Manslaughter at worst. An honest man, Georg tries to make things right with the help of his friends, but they are a bunch of loveable idiots and it always somehow goes wrong. There were some hilarious scenes such as an attempt to fake a miracle and ending up with one of them getting shot. Having bumped into the Pope at the Vatican, Georg asks him if he prays a lot as he desperately tries to make small talk. There was plenty of boobs, banter and Bavarian humour, which is all a German audience seems to need. The audience also really enjoyed the darker, more sinister side of the comedy. I’d definitely recommend watching it if you’re in Germany. Anyway, enough about the film.
Alfie continues to love Germany. We walked around the Englischer Garten (where else?) which he seemed to really enjoy. He has managed to visit a couple of museums and galleries his favourite being the Neue Pinakothek which focuses mainly on 18th and 19th century European Art. They have Monet, Caspar David Friedrich, the lot.
To end on a worrying note, I found myself humming the tune to “Hitler has only got one ball” as I was brushing my teeth last night. Finding this pretty hilarious (of all the tunes to hum to, why that one?!) I proceeded to ask my flatmate if he knew the song. “Have you not heard it?! I can’t believe you haven’t heard it.” I asked him in disbelief. But then again when would he have? Whilst repairing the curtain, I gave another rendition for Reini, my poor flatmate, just in case he hadn’t understood first time. He was not impressed and clearly hadn’t heard the song before. We got sidetracked as I tried to explain that the location of Albert Hall wasn’t integral to the understanding of the song. So you readers have learnt something today – zee Germins don’t sing about Hitler any more. Or if they do it’s not in English.