||[Jul. 14th, 2008|01:12 pm]
This is too strange, not to post it. |
First of all: I settled in my new job in Augsburg very well. Interesting work and even some fun. Weekend relationship with my family works out fine so far. Life was quite ok the first 6 month of the year.
Now to the strange part: I commute by train each weekend, meeting quite interesting people. Top three so far - a UN courier, a nobel prize winner (Hartmuth Michel, nobel prize for chemistry in 1988) and a "real" witch (hey, she said it is her profession!).
This morning I traveled with a couple from Sanderson, Texas (age 52 and 55). They told me, that they did win this trip to Europe in a lottery. Free flight, hotel vouchers and traintickets for two weeks travelling through Europe. They told me, they learned so much about the "old world":
- that Paris is not the capital of Europe but France
- that the Tower of London is NOT the leaning tower
- that Waterloo Station is not located in Belgium
- that Germany is a democracy, not a kingdom
- that the Vatican is actually a part of Rome, not a state in the Alps (that's Switzerland, as they found out!)
- that Pizza is not an american invention, but originated in Italy
- that English was spoken in England first, long before it was the official language of the US
- that Russia and China are not neighbor states of Germany
- that the Great Wall still stands and is located in China, not in Berlin!!!
As they asked me, why nobody in Germany seems to wear "Lederhosen" I looked very closely in the compartement for a hidden camera. Did they work for a TV-show? Nope - no camera, this two americans seemed genuine!
As they told me of their travel plans for their last three days, I had to tell them, that the "King Ludwig Castle" is not even close to Lake Constance and never "held his rockbound watch at the shores of the lake" - and the lake is not near Munich, but at least 140 miles away. That the Oktoberfest starts late September and is nothing more but a big carnival held once a year for 3 weeks (not 365 days)! They were also dissapointed, that Vienna is not a suburb of Munich and they have to go to Austria to visit it. (No, that is NOT the country where the Kangoroos live!) They were glad to hear that the "Hofbräuhaus" is actually in Munich - but not run by monks, who brew the beer.
I had to get off in Augsburg, to go to work - just before I started to get a bit cynical. I just hope, the couple tells about all they have learned about Europe. Maybe others in deep down Texas will find it interesting enough to look some things up in the internet, or even pay us a visit over here...
As for me: next time I'm in Hamburg, I will look for the place, where the "Hamburger" was invented - just in case...