After a very long day of drinking beer in Part 1 of this story, what does one have for breakfast? Particularly if that breakfast is preceding an event such as Oktoberfest?
In an apartment with 6 inebriated guys, you can imagine a night sleep with the disruptive, congested sound of drunken snoring, the constant creaking of wood floors as over-full bladders turned men into drowsy zombies shuffling back and forth to the bathroom, and the air mattresses of the few unlucky ones screeching like trampled cats with every attempt to alleviate paresthesia in the arms and legs.
Naturally after all of that, the best way to start the day is with a counter beer.
After a hearty breakfast, we took the Metro to the Oktoberfest. Here is an Oktoberfest Tip. The Metro stop on the U-Bahn for Oktoberfest is call Theresienweise. Of course where we got off was Theresienstrasse. Don’t do this! It turns a 10-minute metro ride into 40-minutes. The good news is we were dressed to the gills in traditional garb. Well, all except for the shoes. The traditional leather shoes, if they are not broken in, will debilitate you after about 15 minutes of wear.
The Main Event
When you come out of the Metro and follow the masses towards the Oktoberfest entrance, the mood is electric. You quickly discover that there are two sorts of people in the world. Fast walkers and slow sons-of-bitches. But each of us arrived to our table at the Pschorr Braurosl tent. They aren’t really tents though, are they?
No pictures can adequately prepare one for the atmosphere inside an Oktoberfest tent. Probably the thing that gives men a stronger bond than anything else is fighting a battle together in the military. But a very distant second place is going to Oktoberfest.
Eleven guys, who work together, who deal with the same types of work-related problems each and every day from their respective countries. Finland, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium. All represented including one American and one Mexican expat. For one day, we were the eleven most charming guys on the planet in a room with 6189 new best friends. Inside an Oktoberfest is a place where the dancing-challenged move their bodies. Where the tone deaf sing Ein Prosit like Bruce Dickinson. Where the socially handicapped exude the rugged charm of a Jason Statham. It is the place where the social benefits of a liter of beer are perfectly magnified. Nobody has to drive home. Nobody has responsibilities waiting for them back in the hotel room (except maybe a stammering, incoherent courtesy call to a loved one).
Oktoberfest is a place where time ceases to exist until the security reminds you that your reservation is over. (Dammit!) Then there is the mad exodus to a waiting mob outside where you quickly lose track of each other. But in no time at all, you find yourself in another tent drinking more liters of beer with new friends who barely speak your language. And life couldn’t be better.
Oktoberfest is a place everyone you see is smiling and making friends around them. I never witnessed any discrimination (the trick is never to mention Trump). Of course I could be wrong and maybe if anybody bothers to read this, it will go viral (thank you!) and I will be inundated with people’s horror stories. All I know for sure is that I went into that tent with 10 friends and came out with 10 soulmates. I don’t know what happened to all of them after we left… *clears throat*. But I sure felt a stronger bond. Ok, to be fair I only once felt slightly man-shamed. In the Pschorr-Braurosl men’s room. It was as I was confronted with the price list. I can tell you that I really didn’t want to pay.
And oh yeah. The weekend wasn’t over yet.
Parting Tip: If you know how to ask, you have a good chance to convince a security guard to let you and your friends in without a reservation. If you are unsure of your smooth-talking abilities, a particularly easy time to get in is around 9pm when people are starting to leave. The tents usually close around 10pm so you have time for 1-2 beers but only about half a party going on. This is a reason why I prefer the early afternoon reservations. The party is non-stop.