Home > Germany, Personal > Starkbierfest Part 2 and Another Evening at Lola

Starkbierfest Part 2 and Another Evening at Lola

The next morning I awoke to a winter horrorland. There was a thick layer of snow on the ground and it was still coming down. I had planned on sleeping in fairly late but couldn’t manage it, so I got up and went to the store with Roberto, coming back with just enough time to spare to pack up my stuff and head into town for the wild day and night ahead. The snow was coming down so thickly that in just the walk to the train it had made pile on my head and backpack. I was thoroughly miserable until I could warm up on board.

My first stop was Implerstrasse. Coincidentally I ran into Kerre on the train, which worked out well since we were supposed to meet there anyway to walk to Brooke’s host family’s apartment. Along the way we got into a bit of a snowball fight, which I handily won, concluding by pelting her right in the face with some loose snow and making me wish I had my camera handy since her expression was priceless. We went up to Brooke’s place, where she was making pizza for us and Becky, a former Au Pair she was friends with. Our exciting afternoon plan was a Friends marathon. As I have every episode on my external hard drive, it seemed like a good plan to me. We watched many episodes over several hours. A new Au Pair named Ellen joined us for most of it. Kerre had befriended her online, and invited her to join us since she had just come in from North Carolina a week ago and it was her first weekend out. We had a good time telling her all the good (safe streets) and bad (pay toilets) in Munich, in between episodes.

I wasn’t planning on really starting my night until 9:30 or so and we were all restless around 6, so we decided it would be fun to go back to Nockherberger for more of Starkbierfest, not to mention being a real jump into the deep end of local culture for Ellen. By a combination of train and tram, we soon arrived and, much faster than my previous day’s kilometer long hike up the hill, went inside. The hall was even more crowded than the day before, absolutely packed, and with even more people in traditional costumes. We finally found a place to stand on benches in the back right next to the band stage where they were playing some of the same songs from the night before. We got beer (except for Ellen who was driving later) and had a fun time. Kerre made many German friends, some of whom she danced with, while Ellen learned how persistent drunk German men can be and Brooke just tried to keep all of the coats clear of the occasional beer flood caused by dropped mugs. We did see another fight but the security was very efficient in getting the participants out. The others decided they wanted to stay a while longer but I was ready to head on to Fraser’s around 9:30 so I left them there, dancing and singing (or staring in goggle-eyed astonishment in Ellen’s case) and made my way to the train, including several detours when I got lost in the forest on the hill.

By persevering, (and ignoring posted signs about where not to walk) I managed to eventually find the train station and travel to Fraser’s. When I arrived, Jamie, Ross, and Fraser were all hanging out in Sven’s room, drinking and chatting. I took out my vodka and bitter lemon and joined them. Barbara came not long after and we all had chilled out, while Barbara explained to us the tricky method of getting girls her ex-boyfriend had used on her.  Mauritz and Klaus were around too though hanging out in his room. Using the amazing projector in Sven’s room, Fraser put on an episode of Skins, a British television show I had never heard of, but somehow combined the high school drama of Degrassi High, with the violence and sex of the Wire. Not a bad show at all though it is hard to take gangsters with British accents seriously. While we were watching, Sorcha and Karen came by and hung out with us. I shared some of my vodka with them and Fraser, although instead of Red Bull, Ross and I decided to give Sorcha ginger ale. Not knowing if she liked ginger ale, we made sure there was mainly vodka in the glass, and for good measure, topped up mine as well. Near 1 in the morning, Kerre and Brooke came; having lost the others they had mentioned bringing (a theme to the night as it turned out). Everyone decided it was time to go, and stopping only for Sorcha and Karen to put their drinks in beer bottles, we walked out of the apartment. We stopped at the bank so some of us could get cash and when we left somehow Brooke and Kerre were gone (apparently having decided to not come clubbing. Our first stop was a club called 809. We all took cabs there, me with Ross and Barbara, and once arrived, doffed our hoods and hats despite the intense cold because apparently we didn’t want to give a bad impression. Nonetheless, only the girls got in, the rest of us were told the club was full, so the girls came back out. We walked over to Max and Moritz, where we had a repeat of the scene several weeks earlier and were not allowed in (the short bouncer there is rather annoying).

Frustrated, we settled on our old standby Lola Ludwig and started to walk. Sorcha and Karen were lagging behind (most likely due to their shoes) and I didn’t want them to get lost like the last time so I hung back with them and tried to encourage them to move more quickly. Instead, Karen tried to get us all to go into 809 now that there were only 3 of us and not a big group. She may have been kidding though I have no idea, but by the time that discussion was over, Fraser and everyone was almost out of sight. I tried to get us to catch up but they went down into the train tunnel to use it as a shortcut and we lost them, ending up needing a phone call from Ross to put us on the right path again. Karen and Sorcha got into a drunken argument over who was going to meet whom where and when and somehow we lost Karen, although I still don’t know if it was a mistake or deliberate. Either way Sorcha spent most of the rest of the night trying to get her to where we all were. Sorcha and I did soon find the club, though the whole getting there experience was a bit too familiar for my tastes.

Though we weren’t with Mauritz, we still didn’t pay to get in, simply waltzing by the check-in counter with a confident stride that said we belonged. Settling in for drinking and dancing at Lola felt comfortable, since I know how it works quite well. Sorcha and I each had a shot of rum and a beer and went out to dance with everyone. It was funny watching Ross trying to keep Sorcha out of the dance circle, and of course as always the Scottish boys dancing was a delight. Barbara was trying to take pictures, but was unhappy with the results so she gave me the camera and I had some fun taking pictures. Some girl was making eyes at Jamie but he still insisted he’s off girls. I think he’s crazy and I’m not the only one. Must be the hair.

Not long after, Kristyn, Morgan, this girl Jackie I had met once before, and two guys whose names I never actually caught showed up, to general merriment and excitement. Kristyn and Morgan were both in dirndl’s, always a fun sight and doubly so at a club.

A woman tapped me on the shoulder at one point and offered me a free shot of some watermelon liqueur in exchange for writing down my name and email (I put down a fake) and she encouraged me to get my friends to do the same though I think only Sorcha went.

After a trip to the bathroom I saw Ross and Sorcha on the stairs arguing once again about how Ross should punch Sorcha and how he wouldn’t do it in front of witnesses. After later events I decided if that’s how the North Irish fight, no wonder they’re still part of Great Britain.

Mauritz came by and offered me another drink so I went with him and got one, only instead of the standard bar area, we went behind the bar to the prep area where Mauritz and Fraser’s roommate Jonas was working. Mauritz has a fixation on trying to get me drunk so I will be crazy and insisted I drink far more than I normally would, though it was a fun time. Barbara joined us for a couple of them as well though it may have been a bit much for her. I followed them both out of the dance floor to the stairs where there was coupling up going on and it made me so uncomfortable I even went up with them outside while they smoked, an environment I normally avoid as much as possible, just to get away.

There was quite a bit of drama that night though I did what I could to not be near it lest it depress me overmuch. Some of it was not bad stuff and some of it worried me greatly in terms of the future of the group, but I have faith that even if it changes it will stay together in some form.

Mauritz and I went back behind the bar to talk to Jonas, where Mauritz accidentally broke a couple of bottles of liquor, though apparently it wasn’t a big deal, or at least no one seemed to care much. I met and talked briefly with Laura, the bartender, who has worked at Lola for a year. It was amazing to me that she’s only 19 as bartenders in America obviously must be older, so that you never see bartenders still in high school (even with the five-year program that they have in Germany).

Back on the dance floor, I offered Ross a drink and for the first time since I’ve met him, he refused citing a stomach ache. I was quite shocked but didn’t have to worry, as Sorcha was more than happy to take the drink. By then the club was mostly empty, not surprising since it was after 4.

We all headed outside, where I had an interesting chat with Jackie about Canada (she’s from Vancouver), Germany, and life while everyone sorted out their next plan. Sorcha said she’d walk to the train with me but when I glanced up, she and Ross were getting in a cab. I called to her and she looked up, made her signature wave goodbye, and got in the cab, driving off. I shrugged and followed Fraser and Barbara back to Fraser’s. Walking back down through the train tunnel, we randomly saw Jamie coming up the escalator and said hello, though he wouldn’t come with us, insisting he wanted to go home. Fraser’s walking speed seemed amazingly fast to Barbara and I and it was a struggle to keep up but we eventually got to his place and I got my backpack and decided to go home. Barbara said she was too drunk to sleep and wanted to go home too so we walked to Marienplatz discussing this and that in a disjointed manner where she caught the bus and I waited 36 minutes for the train, amusing myself by calling Teresa, a friend from Boston now in Washington D.C for a fun chat. Once I finally got home, I took a shower to get the smell of the night off of me, and fell asleep for a few hours, arising a little after 10.

I was too tired to do anything, so Roberto and I hung out and watched Seinfeld, Friends, and other bad television. I talked online with Sorcha and we decided to have dinner. On a whim I invited her out to Garching and to my surprise she was willing to come all the way out here. She arrived in the evening, still hung over and we went to a restaurant for pizza, soup, and good talking. The waiter was in no hurry to clear us out it seemed, an interesting change from America so it was a while before we left. I showed her my apartment and let her borrow the laundry detergent she said was in need of, and which was apparently a major reason for her willingness to come all the way out to Garching. I walked her back to the train so she wouldn’t get lost and went home myself, crawling into bed and falling asleep almost instantly.

The workweek has begun and there’s a lot to work forward to both in and out of the office, but that was one wild weekend. I’d blame the starkbier, but as I plan on going again, it seems more likely that in most ways, it was just another weekend in Munich.

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