God. This language. That means memories, thoughts and observations.
This is incomplete, random. But, well, I gotta end this. I’ve been back for a week.
I absolutely know Germans are not rude. But Jesus they are so rude. We’re rude too we just don’t see it. We’re used to how we are. So are they. But it’s shocking to have someone knock you out of the way to open the subway door when your finger is just an inch away from the opening mechanism.
In Frankfurt there are lots of escalators (not sure about the rest of Germany. I don’t seem to recall them in Munich but we were mostly in churches and palaces not shopping venues—well except for the lederhosen store). If you’re using the Ubahn or in a store of any size (the tiny Woolworth’s—Ashish’s home away from home—has an escalator to the crappy discount basement). There are escalators all over. And somehow the Germans seem to think the best place to stop and have complex conversations is right smack at the beginning or end of the damn thing. “Um, excuse me, I’d like to get off?” to a group of otherwise engaged and seriously not in anyway concerned about the horde of people surging down on them. I mentioned this to my German teacher and she was all laughing like “Ah ja, das ist so lustig, na ja?” (oh yeah, that’s so funny, right?) She’s Italian—like the Italians are any better. But I digress.
They have Bird scooters in Austria. They are so much fun!!
Germans dress more formally than the French (and are far tidier). Frankfurt, being the Financial capitol of the EU may be the reason. There are bankers and lawyers all over the damn place. The young bankers all dress alike, tight royal blue suits and light leather shoes and belts. They travel in schools, like fish.
In Vienna the museum of crown jewels or some such thing to which I was dragged by the Royal Indian Mounted Police turned out to be quite spectacular. Not only were there amazing crowns and robes, their reliquaries were astounding. One had St Peter’s finger in it with a little teeny crown on it. There were many relics of the true cross, approximately enough to build a small house. And pieces of Jesus’ manger which when you think about it seems pretty rude. I mean, they stayed in the manger for free out of the goodness of some shepherd’s heart since there were no other accommodations, plus well, it was Christmas so it was cold. Despite this generosity they broke the manger up and took it along in the off chance their baby was going to turn out to be God.
The relic I liked the most was Veronica’s veil. That, for those of you who didn’t have that drilled into your head as a child, is the head scarf with which she wiped Jesus’s face on the way to the crucifixion and onto which an image of his face was transferred. The Vatican, no less an authority, has confirmed this image as “verified” (!!!?!) I guess the pope got a WhatsApp from Jesus for verification purposes. The face itself looked like it had been drawn by a 6th grader. Jesus apparently had very close set eyes a reeeeally long nose and an itty bitty mouth (it’s verified!!!!) that was very close to the end of his nose. Maybe he was a mouth breather.
Please note tiny cars on the left.
On the right…these subways are sooooo clean
This and yet that.
Bits of the destroyed buildings just next to these modern buildings
Followed by a fabulous bratwurst in the Konstablerwache market
And don’t you fucking forget it
I just loved this guy.