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It is appalling how dirty I let my clothes get when I travel. Of course it is hard to tell which clothes are clean when you’re dressing out of a suitcase that looks like monkeys live in it.

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The best way to ensure that it will not rain is to bring the vast and heavy Zorro-style rubber rain-cape (with hood) which you bought on your last overseas trip when it rained 90% of the time. Yes, it is added luggage weight but you saved on your suitcase poundage because you didn’t bring socks expecting it to be in the 70s and 80s as it has been for a month. But now, it is 47 and your feet are cold (or all your socks are crunchy dirty having been to France and back).

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Germans do NOT cross against the light. Not even if you cannot see a car in the distance, or a house even. The walk sign changes to green for about 4 seconds and then turns right back to red and cars just go, like it or not. I feel aggressed.

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Hundescheiße. It’s a real word. They have it on signs. Dog shit. The Germans pick theirs up. The French do not.

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We were in a short line to get tickets for Lymphenburg Palace. You could tell it was the ticket line because it said “Tickets” on a sign above the woman selling them, and again, in front, just below the counter. An older couple arrived just as we did and stepped up to her and the man said “Two please.” And the woman behind the ticket counter shrieked, “WHAT DO YOU MEAN??? TWO WHAT??! WHAT DO YOU WANT? TWO OF WHAT?!! Germans are not a particularly patient people like, say, the Norwegians but they are apparently precise. The man in front of us had the presence of mind to complete the transaction but he was clearly shaken. I stepped up to the counter and not wanting a repeat conflagration said, “Two tickets, bitte.” Handing her a 50€. The cost was 12€. She threw it back at me saying, “Give me something smaller!” I wish I had had the presence of mind to have barked back “WHAT DO YOU MEAN??? SMALLER? SMALLER THAN WHAT???!!! A VOLKSWAGEN? AN ORANGE???!! I can be precise, too.

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I have the impression that people think French is hard. I am guessing they have not tried to speak German. Wohnung. Pronounce that. Wrong. And sentence structure…don’t get me started.

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Zum Franziskaner: To the Franciscan. Many restaurants are named like this Zum This or Zum That but not all of them have that apellation. I asked my German teacher why and she had no reason, her response was, “Just like that.” Seemed fair.

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 Germans seem to be pathologically unaware of other people. I can’t quite call it rudeness. It’s not rude in the way French people are rude. And I’ll just say, French and Germans are not rude, this is a cultural thing. We’re all rude in our own way. Oh, now wait, Russians really are rude (Just kidding, Vladimir). Anyway, as I was going to reach into the kraut case in the grocery store (Kraut can mean nearly anything apparently, herbs, green leafy vegetables, weeds) so I’m just about to reach in, my hand is extended and Otto just fucking barges in front of me and starts a search for, Oh, I dunno…should I get the rosemary? NO, I’ll put that back, thyme would work, ah, yes, but if thyme works, wouldn’t sage be nice too? Oop, not this one, it doesn’t look quite fresh—and starts rummaging behind the others for something greener. I just stood behind him not 6 inches away, my breathe condensing on the case door, my hand still vaguely poised to reach for the cilantro.

In the wildly fabulous Schirn Museum there is currently a Basquiat exhibit that is beyond cool. Much of it is his small personal stuff in display cases. He made a lot of postcards and written works that need relatively close scrutiny. Need to look at it closer? No problem, just push yourself in between the picture and person already looking at it closely.

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Frankfurt was heavily, terribly bombed during the war and most of the city is new construction. In many places they have recreated what was there in a lot of other places they have bits of the old buildings there.






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