Monday, October 6, 2008
Oktoberfest this weekend was a blast! We left on Friday night around 11:00pm, with an expected arrival in Munich at 8:00 am. Everyone was drinking before we got on the bus and continued to drink on the bus until everyone fell asleep and woke up in Munich. It's kind of like magic how that works haha. Once there, my friends that I was with (Jan, Neri, Rebecca, Tiago, Agnes, and Stephen) and I somehow got separated from the group and assumed that we were going in the first big tent that greets you as you walk into Oktoberfest. This ended up being a fatal error, as we were separated from the other Bocconi students for the rest of the day. At 9:00 am they opened the doors to the tents and it was one of the most insane things I've ever witnessed. Imagine several hundred (maybe over a thousand) thirsty Germans trying to get through one doorway and into the tent so that you can get a table. It's really important that you get in and get a table, because if you don't have a table you don't get served! Luckily we got in and seated upstairs in the tent, and settled down to a nice breakfast of 2 German sausages, a pretzel, and 2 liters of beer; it pretty much put a new meaning to the phrase "breakfast of champions". The best part was the pretzels, no pretzel I have ever had even comes close to how good the pretzels are at Oktoberfest. Not to mention that they are like a foot in diameter. Inside the tent was awesome, everyone was standing on tables, singing, and drinking (remember that it's still before noon). Sadly, around noon the upstairs of the tent was apparently reserved, so we got kicked out of the tent.
Around this time, Oktoberfest started to suck for a couple of hours (don't worry, it picks up again later). If you're not in a tent at Oktoberfest, it seriously blows, especially if it's near freezing temperature and raining. Picture a typical state or county fair in the US, but add freezing rain. Not fun! We walked around and tried to get into a couple of tents, but after waiting for around an hour without them letting anyone in at all just quit. Eventually we met up with Jan's friends Kristof and Michi. By this time, everyone was so sick of waiting around in the rain trying to get in a tent that most of our group left to go hang out elsewhere in the city of Munich. I stuck around with Kristof and Michi and found a table outside to get a couple of more liters. Also at our table were a couple of Germans, Felix, Tommy, and Ralph (a 46 year old man who came to drink by himself all day). They were all a lot of fun, and eventually the sun ended up coming out and made things a lot more enjoyable.
At 4:00 pm we decided to make another attempt to get into a tent because around this time everyone that entered early in the morning is drunk and ready to leave. We didn't end up getting in until 6:00 pm, and even then was only because we snuck in behind some of the waitresses through the kitchen and into the tent. Had we gotten caught it wouldn't have been pretty, but it was a risk we were willing to take. The security at Oktoberfest is insane, they don't hesitate to get in your face or aggresively push and shove you. Once we got back in the tent, it was the same thing as it was in the morning but amplified times 10. I decided to head back to the bus at around 9:00. I ended up getting lost in Munich by myself and had a freakout moment for about a half hour, until I called Zach to help me out. Zach was in no state to help me, so he directed me to Adam. Eventually I met up with Adam, catching up with a bunch of the Brazilians from the residence hall along the way. We went back to the hotel, woke up in the morning and had breakfast. The breakfast was amazing, they had fresh fruit, eggs, sausage, bacon, and real coffee! It's been so long since I've had an actual cup of coffee as opposed to espresso, and it was sooooo good. At noon we got back on the bus to head home. All things considered, Okbtoberfest was an amazing weekend and I'm so glad that I went.
Total Oktoberfest liter count= 8 or 9 (cut me some slack, everyone lost count eventually)