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Thoughts from Munich (by David)

by on July 17, 2013

As of midnight tonight, we’re at the halfway point in our trip!  So far so good…  feels like we had one 3-week vacation in Turkey and Greece, and now we’re starting another 3-week vacation in Germany/etc.

We’re all really enjoying Munich.  Maybe because the weather is a wonderful 78 degrees, not 95 like the last 3 weeks. Maybe because it’s so easy to zip around town on the local transit systems (with signage written mostly in lettering we can make sense of).  Maybe because it just feels less frantic than Istanbul and Athens… the streets are wide, parking spaces are plentiful, taxis are very polite, etc.

The only part that’s frantic are the &^%!!* bicycles that use a lane on half of the sidewalk.  They zoom as fast as they can, and it’s shocking that there aren’t more serious collisions with pedestrians.  When you’re walking and you hear them ring their little “ding ding” bell coming up behind you, you need to just FREEZE and let them pass you.

It’s interesting that the bikes are all very low-tech…. from the 1960s almost, with fenders, handlebars, a bell; many have a cute little basket on the handlebars.  Even the newer ones made from carbon fiber, are the same design.  Hardly any mountain bikes or “road bike” models.  Here’s a good example.



It seems every tourist in town showed up at the glockenspiel to see the little statues do their dance to the sound of bells. It hurt your neck looking up for 15 minutes.


We’ve seen some sort of mass political demonstration in every city we’ve been in, even the small towns.  This one yesterday was some conservatives on the main square objecting to plans to build a mosque and Islamic Center in Munich.    This guy had a good set of lungs and yelled for about a half hour; some more-liberal-looking  kids tried to shout him down, and a good-sized police squad stood around anticipating trouble.  But they all calmed down when the glockenspiel started to play.



It was exciting trying to figure out how to use the clothes washer in this apartment… the words on the control panel were all in German and this vendor doesn’t have an English version of their manual online.   Anna and Alex made a valiant effort to use Google Translate to figure out the words, but when “schonschleudern” translates to “already hurling”, that doesn’t help much.    In the end we just pressed some buttons and our clothes seem to be coming out clean.







Renee and I were amazed at the movies last night…. the entire theater (for Despicable Me 2 in English) was filled with 28-year-old kids out for a night of partying; they brought their beers into the theater and had an uproarious good time.  (For a movie that in the US no self respecting teenager would stoop to see).


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  1. Aunt Donna permalink

    How about some sort of explanation for the goat?!? Is it coming out of an MRI machine?

  2. Uncle Phil permalink

    The explanation for the goat is obvious.
    They mistakenly pressed the “Ziege” button on the washing machine, and it came out.

  3. Uncle John permalink

    Happy Birthday Anna !!!
    Donna, the answer is easy. The goat was feeling baaaaaad.

  4. Aunt Ginny permalink

    Have you joined any of the demonstrations…don’t worry we’ll come to the rescue. I know someone very high up…how high up is the question?

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