Tuesday, May 30

Tuesday: Half the fun is getting there on the Romantic Road

I forgot to say this earlier, but happy Memorial Day. Nothing special happened here. It's rather unfortunate that practically every city was bombed over here.

This morning we all got to sleep in. John and I shared a room and the other five guys were in the room next door. They were 6 person rooms. The noise from all the jugen woke me up. In our room, there was a third guy. He stopped in for a minute last night and then was leaving when I awoke so we never really got to talk.

The sun was out--great for a last few hours in Rothenburg. When we were just about to leave, I looked out the window and it was downpouring again on all the little German kids who had just left too. We grabbed our umbrellas and went to the Kriminalmuseum.

We saw all sorts of things the weirdos used in the Middle Ages to go Medieval on people: honor punishment masks, iron maidens, executioner swords, dunking baskets, the rack, screws, and neck violens. They were a bunch of freaks. The 8th amendment is a good thing. They even had books on the theories of torture and whatnot. They would be tourturing you while interogating you and there'd be a scribe writing down the answers. It seems that they thought that they could get the truth (a confession) out of you if they tortured you enough. They also had old documents like various laws cities and kings passed 500 years ago.

The bus left from Rothenburg at 12:45 and ended up in Munich at 9 pm. We toured many old towns and saw many things. In one town, we acended the 90 m church tower to get great views of the walled city.

I'm really getting used to German. I only had 1 year of it in high school my senior year and I feel like it's really coming back. I was a little worried. At first, Germany seems like a very weird place, but today was my 3rd day here and it's pretty awesome. But it might have just been Frankfurt. I'm really glad I had some German in high school. Although I do not know very much, I can usually figure out what is being said or written. I'm kind of popular too because of the 10 of us, I'm one of two German speakers. I can definitely handle going to a store or restaurant or out and about in town and getting places. I've also learned many words like 'eingang' (entrance) und 'ausgang' (exit). Whenever you do any kind of transaction, they say "danke shone". I've always tried to be very polite but at first, in the airport, I forgot to say things in German to the airport people.

It was pretty easy to come in. The customs person just took my passport and stamped it. When foreigners enter the U.S. they get the whole works, eyescans and fingerprints.

Right now, I'm sitting in the lobby of the hostel in Munch listening to South Park in German (it's 00:45 here and raining again).

I think it's safe to say some things about Germany now; it's my third day here. Every town has 1 tall kirche, church, with a steeple that's onion shaped. Also, every town has a Rathaus, city hall, with a fountain out in front in the town square. By the way for us Madison people, the Rathaus sits atop the Rathskeller. All the the buildings are made from stucco and red tile rooves. The Autobaun isn't really that special, at least where we were. I'm sure I'll think of more later. Except for the buildings, Germany does look just like Wisconsin. By the way, once you've seen one Medieval town, you've pretty much seen them all. And there is smoking everywhere; the airport in Frankfurt reeked like it.

I'd really like to show some pictures, but I didn't charge the battery last night and it died at noon. It's charging now so, tomorrow. Our tour of the Romantic Strasse terminated in the south at Neuschwanstein Castle, built by Crazy King Ludwig. He basically had the same kind of life as Michael Jackson, except he was found dead in the neighboring lake. By the time we were leaving the town, which is at the begining of the German Alps, it was starting to snow really hard. That's right, snow, the day after Memorial Day.

The fun part:
Our bus driver, Gunter, was very strict and kept the bus on time with clockwork precision and a thick accent. Our second to last stop after 6 hours on the bus at dinner time was at some famous church in the mountains and we ran to a Gasthaus, casual restaraunt instead for the 10 minutes. Claire told the lady in German that we needed something really quick. She whipped up some delicious [I can't remember the word but I'll put it in later]. The bus driver was chaffing really badly so her husband and fellow restauranteur put it on some paper plates and wrapped it in tin foil and gave us plastic forks for the road. We were worried because earlier in the day he had made RJ and Jack put their spaghetti in a box in the cargo area under the bus. We held it behind us and ran in the rear entrance of the bus without him seeing, luckily. We then shared it amongst ourselves. I then realized that it was in fact a Romantic bus when John and I shared a plate of German noodles in the back of the bus in the mountains. [Just kidding]

1 comment:

bruter said...

Hey Mike,

Sounds like you are having a blast!
Wish I was there, just stuck in Wilmot for the rest of my life, oh well could be worse. Im sharing your pics with my geography class.
your flight narration was great.

Mr. Bruton