Welcome to Friday, in which I finally have something to talk about. Unbeknownst to most of the Toilet, I have been in Germany for the past 3 months on work related duties. By the time this post runs I should either be; back home, on a plane or in an airport. No telling.
Back in April I was required for work to transplant myself to Germany and live in a little hotel room with a weird pink hued bathroom and matching toilet. While I was looking forward to this experience, I wasn’t able to bring my TRUE METAL SHIELDMAIDEN of a wife with me. Total bummer aside, I had to do what I had to do to bring the bacon home and seeing a few cool things in the meantime wouldn’t be too bad.
I stayed in the Eifel region of Germany which is full of small towns, nice people, good food and farm land, creating a fairly relaxed environment. It actually wasn’t too much different from growing up in Central Texas. The coolest part of the area was its proximity to Luxembourg, Belgium and a few major German cities.
First and foremost, I was here for work, and my work schedule kind of sucked (4:00 pm to 1:00 am). So while my weekday activities were limited, weekends were free to explore the area. I traveled to bigger cities like Frankfurt, Cologne, Brussels, Bruges, Bastogne, Luxembourg City and Amsterdam, but also to plenty of small villages that were full of history. I was able to see artwork from a few of my favorite artists, hike on extensive trails, enjoy Heavy Metal live, ride trains and try different varieties of food.
Oh, and I went castles. LOTS of castles. And had beer, LOTS of beer. Even beer in castles: double extra bonus points.
Things I learned on my trip:
- Belgian beers are superior to German beers. I tried plenty of each (nearly 140 different beers total), Belgium wins by a landslide.
- Media Markt and Saturn (European equivalents of Best Buy) blow American chain stores out of the water when it comes to music selection. I picked up Falconer, Iced Earth, Helloween, Pestilence, Candlemass, Cirith Ungol and a few other CDs for insanely good prices. Find me one Best Buy where that happens.*
- Germans go INSANE for Asphyx (I attended Death Shall Rise 2 in Trier which included Asphyx, Entombed AD, Grave and Conan. KILLER SHOW)
- Amsterdam has more bicycles than the rest of the world combined, seriously
- You have to pay 0,50 euro to use a public toilet at most places
- They really do put mayonnaise on french fries in Holland and the rest of Europe
- It is really weird watching Hank Hill and Homer Simpson speak German
- Kerry King goes to Amsterdam to eat steak (see picture below!)
- Frankfurt has an odd tradition in which groups of 5-7 people get together for a big party/event. Everyone in the group is single with matching shirts except for one married person that has to dress as the opposite gender. In order to earn their matching t-shirt they have to consume X amount of alcohol from other groups. It was very interesting to watch things unfold.
- You can never see enough castles
*I went to independent record stores too, chill out
In order to chronicle my trip and hone my photography skills, I bought a semi-fancy camera and put it to good use by taking thousands of photographs. Seriously, THOUSANDS.
Here a few choice picks that I think the Toilet will enjoy for various reasons:
Now for business!
GOOD: I will be back home enjoying Texas beer (best beer in the GOTDANG world!), my record player, Whataburger, Mexican food (a severe lack of which I endured) and English-speaking movie theaters (I MISSED CIVIL WAR! AGH!) with my glorious wife. On top of that, there are some extremely good bands coming to my area soon which will more than make up for the shows I missed while I was gone. I will also be back in a time zone and work schedule that will allow me to disqus it up with the fine people here on the toilet in a more proper way.
BAD: As mentioned above, I totally missed Captain America 3: Civil War, that sucked. They overdub their films here, and even if I could get subtitles, watching and hearing Steve Rogers speak German is something I could not bring myself to do (because ‘MURICA). Early morning chats with European and Australian Toileteers are unfortunately something that isn’t going to happen nearly enough now, sorry my dudes! But I will try to make time for it when I can. Oh, and two weeks before I left I sliced my finger open (not on purpose, mind you), and have lost partial feeling in my fingertip. It is an odd sensation that I can’t stop playing with. Luckily it was not too deep and has healed up fairly well.
UGLY: It’s almost August in Texas, and I will surely be sweating like a pig upon my arrival.
Now it is your turn, oh trusty toileteers! Let us know how your week was down below. Hopefully my flight makes it okay and I can join you in conversation. In the meantime, enjoy some Metal and enjoy your weekend!