Friday, May 27, 2011

Of Bikes, Bavaria, Babes, Buddies, Beer, Bretz'n, Beer (again) and—yes!—Boobs

It's a rainy day here in Freising, the first in weeks. Sabine and I are having a lazy day, especially after visting the world's oldest brewery, Weihenstephan, yesterday afternoon for some serious hoppy sampling. The day before we had ridden to München, about 25 miles away (and 25 back), and I took a few pics along the way that exemplify pretty much everything that makes this area so much fun. First, there was the fact that we were able to ride bike paths all the way to München, some of them paved, others along the river Isar that were pea-gravelled. All these paths use clear directional signs so that one can navigate even without knowing the area. Amazing.
Bike bridge across the Isar (BTW Sabine bought a helmet in München)

The bike path took us to the heart of München, the center of which is attractive, clean, and vibrant. Obviously, any city looks better under blue skies than when it's overcast and a steady drizzle dampens not only the cobblestones but the mind as well, but still....

München's City Hall
Our quest was to meet with my old buddies, Wolfgang and Inge, at the Chinesischer Turm in the English Garden. It seemed as if half of München was already on lunch break as a gazillion folks were milling around the world's largest city park (yes, bigger than NYC's Central Park), pickinicking and strolling around in bikinis. It was quite the meat show, and it was barely after noon.
Englischer Garten around noon on a Wednesday featuring zwei dralle Mädchen
We met up with W&I at the pre-determined time—this is Germany, after all! The two had ridden their bikes, too, just like at least half of those in the park.
Hanging out with friends
The English Garden features various biergartens, and the one at Chinesischer Turm is a big one. The beer is a bit more dear than what we had experienced before, and the food is not exactly cheap, either. Remember, BMW is the acronym for Bayerische Motoren Werke, and if you don't drive a BMW here you most likely can be found in a Mercedes, Audi, Porsche, or VW. So, it doens't really matter to anybody that the big beers sell for six euros.

Ein Grosses und ein Kleines
Beer  calls for food, and what is more Bavarian than the pretzel, or, as it is known in these latitudes, the Bretz'n? The fact that we also ate a healthy portion of spareribs (!) was ameliorated only by the fact that we'd also picked up some Krautsalad.

Bavarian-sized Bretz'n
But it's really all about the beer, and folks drink it by the liter (Mass). Most locals are clad in normal street attire, but some still show up in the traditional garb, Lederhosen. It's quite a sight!

The fellas to the left sport Lederhosen
We listened to the oompah music, chatted about our lives, drank another Mass of beer or two, and finally split. By now the park had become overpopulated (does anybody work in this city at 4 p.m.?), and Sabine told me that the "naked option" was simply a fact of life. American and Japanese tourist appear to enjoy it as much as I did—and I hope you do, too. (Remember that clicking on the pics creates bliss.)

München—a cultured city
Yes, this pic was really taken in a city park in one of Europe's great cultural capitals, home of BMW, in by far the most conservative German state you can find. Oh my, are they ever headed straight toward hell!

I, on the other hand, will head back to our beloved West Texas on Monday, dreaming of far-away lands where the Fräuleins are fair and prefer to clothe themselves skimpily.



  1. I am moving to Germany. But I will go NUTS trying to explain to the bartenders that a beer is supposed to be FULL. That much head on an American brew would get you fired! They would have to be serving it attired in a fashion reminiscent of that which the sunbather pictured just above wears! I think that would be okay... ;)

  2. Kai, I fully agree on both points. I am pissed off by those half-empty steins, too. To be fair, the things are definitely bigger than one liter, but the appearance is most bothersome. so I brought this up with one of those stern-looking, surly, big-bosomed waitresses. She just looked with me with total contempt and then hissed "Foam is beer, too." Oh well.