Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Deustchland war Wunderbar!
Translation: Germany was wonderful!

This past weekend we (the 7:11 running club) headed to Heidelberg, Germany for the weekend. The trip evolved since we first arrived in Switzerland, initially it was just going to be Bruce and I going to visit Harald & Barbara NiederstraBer. Then we were all going to go by train, then the train was too expensive so I was going on my own, without Bruce. Then we got a van, a 9 passenger van name Margot.

On Friday at 2:45, we were supposed to leave at 2:30 but we were waiting on our perpetually late friend Joe. When we finally hit the road, we realized that the map we just bought ended virtually five miles outside of Geneva (ok, it ended at the Swiss border, but we like to pick on Bruce.) As for seating arrangements, in the front seat we had Bruce (our pilot,) me (our co-pilot,) and our co-co-pilot (Robert.) Yes we were squeezed in close. In the back everyone else had an empty seat between them, but we were Bruce's amusement for the 5 hour + trek to Heidelberg.

When we got to Heidelberg, we got lost immediately. Why? Well first off we had no map. Then secondly there were no street signs in this city. And when there was a sign Bruce was driving at top speeds through all the intersections. Needless to say we got lost. We ended up on the wrong side of town, which needless to say was not that far from the right the other side of town. But we called the hotel and needless to say they did not have the patience for my bad German, we eventually decided to quit trying to find it on our own and we called in reinforcements: Harald. It was wonderful, I mentioned one landmark and he was like I know where you are pull over and I will be there in 5 minutes. And he was.

He and Barbara were at the train station. It was so great to see them again. I love them so much! Harald is so wonderful and so is his mom. We had a great little reunion while everyone in the van waited for us. Then Barbara hopped back on the train to go to an outlying city where she was spending the night with family. Harald hopped back in the car with us and we found the hotel within minutes. Funny how it works when you have someone who knows where you are going.

We got to the hotel which ended up being a bed and breakfast. Yes I booked my five rowdy running club buddies in a bed and breakfast. It is hard to pick a hotel on the Internet that doesn't look to crappy but doesn't cost a million dollars a night. We got in and the inn keepers knew well ZERO English. In fact the woman said to Harald when he came in to clear things up, "Is there anyone in this group who can speak better German than this one." That is where she pointed at me. Funny thing is the girl who could not speak it could surely understand the insult. Harald later told me she was a "crazy old southern woman." He and Barbara lied to me all weekend and told me that my German was wonderful. I know they weren't telling me the truth, but it surely made me feel good.

On Saturday morning, Barbara returned to Heidelberg and we meet up with her for Breakfast. Then the rest of the group arrived. Bruce (who ends up sitting there smiling while I try to speak German and Barbara and Harald try to help me) went off with the 7:11 crew to the Schloss (the castle.) I spent the day with Harald and Barbara and got my own personal tour of the city. I also got a Heidelberg College t-shirt. That is the school Harald is currently attending. It was a lot of fun hanging out with them again. We did some shopping had a couple Berliner WeiBers.

We met up with the rest of the group at the bar after a hard day of climbing up to the SchloB. There we learned that Robert had fallen in love with the Man Bag aka the Man Purse or the Murse (he actually confiscated Meghan's bag and converted it to the man bag.) Since then Robert has been obsessed with finding his own Man Bag and Man Capris. He is determined to bring high fashion back to Ohio.

Barbara went back to her family's home around dinner time. It was tough to say goodbye, but they are planning on another visit next year. They might even come to our graduation in Geneva, which will be 8/8/08.

Harald however took us to dinner at a tradition German restaurant. Karyn & Bruce had sauerkraut, I ate a German Pretzel with butter and a beer. It was delicious. We ate well in Germany. Unfortunately Harald had a wedding he had to go to, he felt bad because he was leaving me, but after hanging out with the gang, he was wishing that he could totally blow off the wedding.

But Harald hooked us up with the skinny on the nightlife of Heidelberg. We had a great time hitting the town as a crazy group of Americans. Then we made the 5+ hour trip back to Geneva. I must say we had a soundtrack for the trip: Blame Canada from the South Park movie, R. Kelly - Remix to Ignition and of course 99 Luftballoons from Nena. We listened to 99 Luftballoons probably 10 times each way.


JMH said...

Hi Jennie!

Thanks for keeping us updated (you are so much better than my brother, whose last update was from the Alps).

Sounds like you guys are having lots of fun.

I didn't realize you got to go back to Geneva next year to graduate-08/08/08: according to the Chinese 8 is a lucky number (which if you were in the US right now you would know, because they run the stupid Olympic commericial on NBC at least 8 times an hour!)

Stay safe.

taawd said...

yo girl!

it's great to see the update. i left a hilarious message on your phone (back here in the U.S.)

Tell Brucie, I miss him too!