Saturday, April 30, 2005

 

machines for living

during my travels i read, from bauhaus to our house, by tom wolfe. perhaps he is a bit too rough on his criticisms of modern architecture, but regardless it is damn funny. allow me to share an enjoyable bit, "all at once they are willing to accept that glass of ice water in the face, that bracing slap across the mouth, that reprimanded for the fat of one's bourgeois soul, known as modern architecture."

so i am now back once again to berlin, i will leave tomorrow for boston, i am sad. i have had so much fun, but on the upside i get to see all of you guys so soon (yes this is a positive thing.) thanks again for writing my checks for me and taking care of my car, i greatly appreciate it. it is now time to remove the bar and jacuzzi from my room, i'm sorry to spoil all of the fun. so i just got back from munchen this morning. at first, i was a bit luke warm on munich, but by the end i could not get enough. i took a day trip yesterday to two of king ludwig II's 19th century castles, bascially on the border of austria in the alps, these being neuschwanstein and linderhof. they were both quite remarkable, i was thoughly impressed. our crazy tour guide from seattle, via nashville (he's a song writer too) told the whole bus to go to fruhling fest, the spring version of oktober fest. so, i made friends with this couple my parents age from san diego, carol and steve, they were so cool. they offered to accompany me to the beer hall, so i would not have to endure thousands of crazy, drunk, bavarian men on my own. so, this fruhling fest was like a giant drunken carnival, with beer tents galore. we found the biggest one we could and headed for a picnic table, not only did they only serve beer that was seriously 4 pints in 1 (one could barely lift the glass with one arm), but they also had giant pretzels, roasted chickens, freshly skewed mackerel, and "traditonal" german bands in the full lederhosen attire (except they played american songs with german lyrics ie. get it on (bang a gong) and oh-blah-di oh-blah-da). people were out of control singing and dancing on tables, not to mention the asian tourists getting into the whole thing, so fucking hysterical. so these bucksome beermaids could carry about 10-12 of these monster beers at a time, what a feat! so, needless to say after one augustiner i was severly imparied while stumbling to the train station, i had no problem sleeping though. it was quite a cite to behold.

so, i shall backtrack a bit now...
i had a marvelous time in krakow (last fri, sat, sun), i wish that i had more time in poland, it was great. i met a girl who goes to bc at my hostel, small world, so we went out to a piano-jazz bar called harris' in old town square. there was a polish jazz band playing, in a dank cavernous basement, highly enjoyable. krakow is so cool, everything is in a dank cavernous basement. anyhow, i had a great dark beer, okocim. eastern european dark beers are so tasty and surprisingly light.

the next day i made a pilgrimage to auschwitz and birkenau, definitely worth the journey. highly fucked up and depressing as expected, auschwitz's cites were converted mostly to museums exhibitions such as cases of shoes, suitcases, kitchenware, hair, that had been left behind by the victims, i thought rather effective. birkenau on the otherhand was left basically as an example of what the barracks and the surrouding area would have looked like at the time, except for the people who have built houses around the gates of the camp, can you imagine your front yard facing a concentration camp? fucked up! birkenau was just a massive expanse of nothingness, with 4 crematoria in ruins, due to the nazi's destruction of them before they fled the camp. there was only one row of mens barracks left in birkenau due to their instability upon the creation of the museum, but i believe that most if not all the women's barracks were left in tact. i looked much more like a farm for horses than a concentration camp, also fucked up!

hmm...i think the train couchette was infested...mysterious bites, again!
and then there was vienna...
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