Bye-Bye Bavarian Ben.

This weekend has been a lot less busy than the last few. Nevertheless, we had plenty of fun on the weekend.  On Friday, I went out with the colleagues. It was obviously a great night, we went to a bar called Cafe Cord near Sendlinger Tor where Sisom and his friend joined us. When they left then the rest of us proceeded to “089 Club” in Sonnenstraße with Jean-Remy, Ingo, his girlfriend, her flatmate, her two friends from home Lea and Pia as well as a fellow student called Michelle. I think everyone had a good night, especially Jean-Remy who was in a perpetual state of celebration the entire night, presumably due to the rapid injection of BECK’s into his bloodstream. Ingo and I – along with a battered JR – amused ourselves by providing a constant flow of songs translated loosely into German. One example was “Bewegen Sie, Hund…geh aus dem Weg. Geh aus dem Weg, Hund, geh aus dem Weg”. This didn’t get tiring for us lads, but the fun started to wear off for the girls pretty quickly. Take note guys; German girls are not easily impressed by such tomfoolery, it must be said. In spite of this, Selina, Lea and Pia were really fun to go out with and hopefully we will see them again in the near future. At the end of the night we all said our goodbyes and myself and Ingo argued about which fast food outlets were the best in terms of value. We parted ways at McDonald’s, after it dawned upon me that I really am more of a Burger King man. The meat is juicier and the service is better, in my humble opinion. My customer loyalty came at a price, however, and after a half hour detour I returned from Hauptbahnhof to catch a bus home. It turned out a couple of days later that poor Ingo had in fact taken a wrong turning and got completely lost and in his desperate panic, he then rang Selina who gave him directions via Google Maps back to his house (which is literally round the corner). Rule number one of drinking: ensure you have hearty meal beforehand. An extension of this notion is “Kein Bier bevor Vier” . This phrases meaning that no beer should be consumed before four o’clock in the afternoon. One of the many German drinking rules I have learnt from Inglorious Ingo.

On Saturday, I was summoned to Starbuck’s by Nath, who was undertaking some important administrative business. Our plan was to then do some of the toursity things which, as semi-professional beer drinkers, we had neglected in the past few months. By a strange coincidence, Selina, Pia and Lea strolled in like zombies to purchase revitalising Frapuccinos or some such other girly drinks. We then joined them on doing a little bit of sightseeing around the city centre. Of course we ended up going to the Chiesischer Turm in the Englischer Garten for a nice mug of Glühwein. The entire afternoon we were cracking jokes and Nath remarked that Germans are actually a really good laugh. Granted that his scope was limited to these three charming girls, but still it was sort of an insight.

Nath, me, Selina and Lea outside the Bayerischer Staatsoper. Photo taken by the lovely Pia.

As many of you will know, I have had the pleasure of living with a Bavarian, namely Ben, for the past six weeks. He has been a great friend to me and we have had a lot of fun together. Any fun that I had on the weekend was sadly overshadowed by yesterday’s news that Ben was planning on moving out. On Thursday (today). The distance from work, the fact that our shower curtain doesn’t work, the uncomfortable location of work, our lack of internet connection and the fact that I was always there, getting in the way of romantic evenings with his girlfriend all became too much for BB and he informed me on Wednesday morning that he was leaving. Before I had time to react, it became clear that he had already signed the contract for the new apartment whcih is closer to work, has internet…and most importantly it is a one person room. The condition was that he had to move in right away, as the had just been refurbished.

Perhaps I should have paid more attention to the fact that this was his first time living away from home let alone living in a big city. Apart from our shared love of both Burger King and KFC, you could say me and Ben were polar opposites. I, being a Londoner who owns a pair of Lederhosen, he being a Bavarian who not only doesn’t own Lederhosen but proudly wears David Beckham’s newest fragrance and sports a Manchester United shirt. Great times together include teaching him the ways of the British student (now an endangered species after the hike in tuition fees). For example, I explained how the main goal of the taxi drivers in Leeds is to secure a deals for the students and thereby hooking in customers. He would then compare their accents to that of German-speaking Raj in is favourite TV show: HowImetyaMazzer. I have learnt huge amounts from the clean and efficient electronics engineer that is and always will be Bavarian. I aspire one day to be more like him.  I want to thank him for being supportive to me as I was finding my footing in Munich – I have now progressed to the level of an Intermediate Form-filler-outer. Ben was only too eager in helping me to sign forms which I had forgotten to fill out and thereby ensuring that some German, in some tax office somewhere in the Bundesrepublik had their “Formular Fetish” satisfied that day. I wish Ben great success for the rest of his internship and indeed his Ausbildung and hope that we will see each other every now and then before he leaves in February.I now wish him all the best as his finds peace and quiet in his own newly furnished apartment with internet and a fully functioning bathroom!

Bavarian Ben

The final theme I will write about today is something I have been putting off for a long time. Learning to drive. Even though I have now realised that I do need to learn to drive pronto (and sort of require it for my job), unfortunately, it looks like I won’t be able to afford the course that I wish to do in my only week of holiday in the first week of January. Annoyingly enough, the student loan comes in the week after I would be able to take the course and I will have no other holiday for the rest of the year. Since it is also extortionate and difficult to do it in Germany I think I will have to wait until next year to complete it. Financially I’m not far from the total cost of the course, but far enough that the dream probably won’t become a reality. Unfortunately money doesn’t grow on cars.

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