Monday, February 20, 2006
Germany, Day Eight: "All Your Euro Are Belong to Us"
Ah, the Euro.
I ran out of money. I sent a desperate e-mail to my mother to let her know that my bank account was almost empty.
Usually, I don't take handouts or expect to get any from my parents, but this was an emergency.
If I didn't get money quick, I was going to have to wash all of Europe's dishes for an eternity before I could come home, and have you seen what those people eat? I was not about to start scraping Sauerkraut backwash, so I begged. My mom had already given me a generous contribution as a college graduation gift, but between that and my own cash, which, added together, was a lot in dollars, I had uh, not so much in Euros...
Anyway, I called her collect on Robker's cell, and she went to the bank to put some money in there for me (I promise you this is the only time this has happened in my LIFE. I'm not trying to be (very) prideful, but it's the truth. Not that my parents don't help me out. They certainly do.).
Unfortunately, the Euro ATM's don't tell pathetic Americans their bank balance, so I never knew if the money was in or not. AHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With that on my mind, we did a walking tour of Hamburg.
Hamburg's streets are paved with semen.
Seriously. The world's biggest red-light district is not in Amsterdam. It is in Hamburg, and it is called the Reeperbahn, and we walked two blocks in just to see it, and I almost puked.
Even outside of the Reeperbahn, everything I saw in Hamburg was quite filthy. Every sign had either a penis, a vagina, breasticese, or a woman performing fellatio on another woman.
Every sign but one:
You can't have both, dude. You can only have ONE!!!
This started to make me depressed. I'm all for artistic eroticism in limited quantities, but all-out tasteless debauchery is not my bag.
This, coupled with the hotel shower straight from the river STYX made Hamburg my least favorite city of the trip.
But there were some bright spots.
After crossing the "Field of the Holy Spirit" (That's it above with Robker and Stephanie walking across it. Does it look like "The Field of the Holy Spirit" to you? Also, that's some ridiculously tall tower WAY off in the distance. Also, to the left, I think, is where the movie "Saw" took place. I'm lying about that last bit, but seriously. Should I add something else here to throw the rest of the sentence off even more? Did you know that the Star-Nosed Mole is the only member of the genus Condylura? You did? You cheeky swimmer!), I was mentally exhausted. What a depressing city. And then, from nowhere, more snow came, and it got even colder and more miserable.
Finally, we came to an old building at the point of a V city block with the arms of the V as streets and the open space as land.
Obviously, it was a church, but not like one I had ever seen.
Robker said it was an Eastern Orthodox church.
I was under the impression that this would be a very private place.
Nevertheless, I could not curtail my curiousity. I really wanted to look inside.
I mean, look at this doorknob:
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Like you could resist turning this thing!
So, I turned it.
We stepped into a pleasant and refreshingly warm room. It looked like a normal older church interior, but there were colorful artifacts all over the front of the sanctuary. I took off my hat.
Two women stood near the front, vacuuming the carpet. I wanted to get out of the room before they noticed us. Suddenly, one of the women looked up, then the other. I tensed, but they both smiled warmly and waved at us. I waved back, smiled, nodded. They went back to vacuuming, and we left. I don't know why, but those women's simple kindness made me feel like a million dollars, or two Euros. I have good feelings for the Orthodox Church based solely on the kindness of those two women.
After this, we headed toward some river that inspires German pride. Considering the atmosphere of the locale, I should just call it the Semen River, or in German, the River Semen.
Anyway, we suddenly found ourselves in another nice warm pocket of non-debaucherous pleasant feelings.
First, we saw this building:
Then we found this sweet restaurant that served all kinds of different food:
If you know me even in the least bit, you can probably guess which of these things I purchased. I'll give you a hint: it's the one that doesn't end in a consonant.
I ate all of my food, and then, like the ravenous, Krunk-Juice Beast/Dirty White-Boy that I am, I ate the Robker's leftovers as well.
After this, we went back to the hotel, grabbed our stuff, and beat out of that town like it just weren't cool no more.
Before we did that, though, I decided to take a cheesy MySpace type picture of myself in a mirror with the flash on, and since I now use it as a joke on the Xanga site I never update and have solely to comment on other people's Xangas, I thought I would share it here:
But I just changed my mind, so I won't because it looks stupid.
Anyway, the three of us hopped a train for Cologne.
Robker and I then had a near three hour conversation on our women-history.
Surprisingly, we had not traded many of these stories before, so we had great females-suck bonding time (No offense to females who do not suck). Stephanie slept.
During this conversation, I knocked off 1200 candy bars.
I LOVE THOSE THINGS!