SEPTEMBER 26 & 27, 2022
We left the German Alpine area behind and trained through verdant woods of various pines and cedars and green farm land. Some of the corn is yet to be harvested. We arrived in Munich, checked into our hotel, cleaned up and headed into the Altstadt (Old Town) of the city. Dee and Sheila had not been to Munich prior and when we walked up from the U Bahn (underground subway) right in the middle of the Altstadt, they were awe struck. The Rathaus (Town Hall) is impressive, both in size and gothic architectural style. Its famous Glockenspiel with moving figurines is a main tourist draw. The entire Marienplatz area is filled with baroque towered churches and buildings. It is bustling, especially with the Oktoberfest going full swing at the nearby Theresienwiese fair grounds. We went into two beautiful churches—St. Peter’s (baroque) and St. Michael’s (renaissance)—both Roman Catholic. We lollygagged in the market place filled with vendors of almost every kind. Hungry, we ate at the well loved der Augustiner for a very German meal—I had boiled white sausages and white cabbage salad and potato salad. Randy and Melisa had a German fried meatloaf. Of course, the Augustiner beer was great. Later, we stopped at a pastry shop and ordered too many to take back to the hotel—pretzels filled with cheese or cream cheese and jelly rolls and…
Early the next morning, we hit the mother of all Oktoberfests. Drawing millions of visitors this huge venue is filled with massive tents sponsored by the major German brewers. We found ample space in the Hofbrau tent which holds 10,000 guests with large decorations made from dried hops. Once the band started, it began to fill up, even though it was a cold day with rain on and off. We had a joyous time. The food was good! They discourage folks from standing on tables and drinking, but that did not stop some from doing so to boisterous cheers from the crowd and then loud “boos” when security stepped in and escorted the drinkers out. We all learned the popular bier hall song, “Ein Prosit”—loosely translated—“Drink up, you’re in good, warm fellowship—1, 2, 3 drink.” You then lift your litre stein in the air, pound it down on the table and then drink. Fun, fun!
“1 in a 1,000,000” chance you run into someone from home, but Kathy and I did. We were walking the massive grounds and walked into the Lowenbrau tent because, although this was our fifth time to the Oktoberfest in Munich, we had never visited that tent. Lo and behold, the Krakosky’s and Schlaffer’s from Tomball saw us, and we had a marvelous visit. We ended our day with a delightful meal time at our Marriott hotel for the ten of us from our travel group. The Steele’s have returned home and Dee and Sheila leave tomorrow, so from here on out, there will be eight of us on this continuing adventure.