Mounting Oktoberfest…

Jet lag has been a mean SOB the deal with this time around.

Usually I just mope and drag myself around in a haze for a few days and gradually come out of it. Not this time. I’m about to drop into bed after fighting heavy eyelids for the last few hours. Last night I really didn’t get to sleep at all, only managed to grab a couple hours right before the alarm went off.

I was a zombie today, and considering how often I’m getting called into meetings to come up with some catchy phrase from the hip I’m thinking that is not such a good idea.

I’m trying to get back into a regular sleep pattern asap because this weekend will be no help at all in the quest for rest.

Oktoberfest starts Saturday…and the excitement in town (and number of tourists) is mounting.

The ceremonial tapping of the first keg takes place precisely at noon, following a parade of horse-drawn wagons dragging beer and full-bosomed women to the fairgrounds called the Wies’n. The mayor taps the keg and last year I heard a commentator say that the tapping of the keg has only been late once and that had something to do with bombs or some other major catastrophie.

This is the land of punctuality and that extends to their beer drinking.

Today the bus drivers and transportation workers of Munich showed their might by going on strike, putting the whole city on their feet and bikes. I was battling heavy traffic on foot with about two hours of sleep under my belt this evening when I got off work and had to haul myself downtown to buy a new blouse for my dirndle. Naturally I ignored the obvious risks when getting dressed today and chose to wear heeled boots. So now I’m sitting here, tired, with sore feet, and still annoyed at the crowds and having to push my way all over downtown.

But I will be dressed the part on Saturday morning.

Oliver and I and another couple will be meeting at the Wies’n at about 7:45am to get to a tent and get some tables. Yep 7:45, come any later and you can forget about that. This is the only day when you’re allowed to bring food and drinks into the tents because nothing can be sold until the official opening of the Oktoberfest at noon after the first beer has been poured. So we’re packing picnic baskets and bringing table clothes – this is Germany after all, no savagery allowed – and we’ll be playing cards and waiting for the noon beer.

It’s funny, Germans have a bad reputation at most resorts and vacation spots over here because they are notorious for getting up early, putting their towels on the best deck chairs and sunning locations and then going to breakfast or even back to bed until the sun gets high enough. Saving seats like they were still in third grade.

This really irks the painfully polite (when sober) Brits who are always bewildered but powerless apparently to move the towel and ‘un-save’ the seat. They fume but do nothing.

At Oktoberfest this ‘saving seat’ think really never took off. Here the story is snuggle in and get cosy with your neighbor because you’ll be swapping sweat for the next few hours. A table for ten can mysetriously expand to seat up to 20 once the beers have erased of driven down personal space issues.

I’m looking forward to a few angry Germans when I spread my table cloth and tell them a table is saved. I’ll have to make sure to smile sweetly so I don’t get pounded. we’ll see how the experiment plays out.

Yes I’m American and yes I will be wearing the dirndle. For one it is cute and I look cute in it. For another it is ideal for the party environment.

You buy one or two that are designated for Oktoberfest and then you hang and Frebreeze them the rest of the year. No need for dry cleaning = cheap. The dress soaks up the sweat, spilled beer – and who knows what other liquids – and protects most of your body from random cigarette burns.

The bodice pushes most women’s boobs to their ears or at least creates a hint of cleavage where nature had no chance in hell. Best is that the waist of the dress stops above your natural one, this means you can eat a half a duck, a big pretzel, drink three beers and still show no bulging belly, it’s all under the skirt!

Slap on a pair of boots and you’re the goddess of Oktoberfest.

I am off to find my biggest push-up bra and silison inserts and then it’s off to bed!

Thank GOD tomorrow is Friday.

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