Time, etc. (part 2)

Getupp told me this morning that it was time to write another blog post, so here we are!

Where did we leave off…still in January?!  Oh man.  Well, not too much happened right away after I arrived once again in Hamburg, except that I tried Turkish food for the first time the night I got back and IT WAS AWESOME.  I had a Döner sandwich , which is not unlike a Gyro, except that it’s made in a delicously airy, crusty flatbread with either chicken or beef, lettuce, and sometimes some spicy sauce.  One can also get the sandwich as a burrito-style wrap, which is also pretty great.  Overall it’s a little more subtle in flavor than the typical fare at Greek House or Oakland Gyros (gotta holla at MKE!).
The guy running the Döner stand was really cool and made me laugh, which was also awesome.  I hadn’t laughed in a while.

I really didn’t get out much for the next week or so after that.  I was still waiting on my financial aid from OU and didn’t want to exacerbate my already precarious finances.  However, fun was definitely in order for Super Bowl night!  (What a great time to be a Packers fan, eh?)
I found one bar in Hamburg that was showing the game–an Irish pub called Finnegan’s Wake.  They’d advertised their Super Bowl party on an American ex-pat website, and I was really nervous that the place would be packed completely full already a couple of hours before the game.  When I arrived (at 11:30 PM, an hour before the game), there were still a couple of open seats at the bar, one of them next to a fellow Packers fan.  What luck!

Crazy Swede, claimed to have played at UCLA with Troy Aikman.

Robert, the crazy Swede. Claims to have played at UCLA with Troy Aikman. (photo credit: Damian Helbling)

Upon learning that I was also a Packers fan, Robert, pictured here,  insisted that I sit by him.  (In other circumstances, I would not have done so, but my judgement was already impaired from having had a glass-and-a-half of wine on the train en route to the bar.  Cheap nights are always better, right?)  He proceeded to buy me a Guinness, and we started yammering on about our team and why the heck he’s even a Packers fan to begin with (something I still don’t understand).  Pretty soon his buddy showed up, and he bought me another beer!  I decided these guys were all right.  For a while.
Then things started getting weird.  Some random girl came up and got pretty friendly (heh heh) with Robert, who later claimed that he had no idea who she was.  Then the heckling started.  First he was bugging the other guy sitting next to me about his Bills shirt, then it was the quiet Steelers fan standing behind us.  Em-barrassing.  Bills shirt guy went somewhere else, which made it really difficult to ignore weirdo Robert, until someone my age (!) sat down next to me.  The guy was a Steelers fan, and I don’t remember exactly how our conversation started, but we ended up as friends by the end of the night.  I made friends with the afore-mentioned heckled Steelers fan, too (to whom credit goes for the picture).
So, at the end of the night, I’d paid only for one drink of my own, and a drink for my new friend Leonard as consolation for his team’s loss.  Packers and cheap night FTW!

Oh, I almost forgot!  The day before I went to Schwerin, Natalye’s and my friends Jan and Uli invited me to go with them to Ikea.  (Natalye was away that weekend.) It was a total coincidence that they’d invited me to go there, since I had planned to try to figure out how to take the public transportation there that same day.  The best part about the Ikea here is that they have a cheap hot dog and soda deal (€1!), and a self-serve fixin’s area with all the stuff I like!  After that, we went down to the harbor and took the public transport ferry, which was really cool (and also really cold).  Later, we decided to go for dinner, and they happily obliged when I said that I’d like some traditional German food.  Jan, Uli and their friend convinced me to get the Leberkäse (pronounced lay-buh-kay-seh) plate, which came with a fried egg and potatoes.  Now, for all the non-German speakers out there, Leberkäse literally means liver cheese.  Like, weird, right?  The name and the appearance of this meal (it resembled a slice of meatloaf, except pink and with the texture of bologna) made me a little nervous, but it actually tasted really good!  After an internet query, I found that there’s actually very little, if any, liver in it.  All in all, my first authentic German meal in Germany was awesome.

So, friends, we’re sort of getting caught up…now we’re stuck at the beginning of February.  I think I ought to try a little harder at this, no?


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