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  • Writer's pictureNicholas Nelson

Nacht in Freiburg

Döner count: 4

  x 4

Zwei Nächte, Zwei Abenteuer (oder mehr). Wir haben viele Abenteuer erlebt in Freiburg und am Titisee. Letzte Nacht sind wir in die Innenstadt gegangen und wir haben getrunken. 🙂 Zuerst sind wir bei einer irischen Bar gegangen und dann zu zwei deutschen Bars. Sie waren toll, weil das Bier sehr billig war und die Leute fröhlich waren. Wir haben viele verschiedene Personen kennengelernt inklusive einer Braut und einer Russisch Deutschen. Sie waren betrunken aber es war okay. Wir sind hier für diese interessanten Abenteuere.

We had enough time in the past two days to really get our whits about us in this town. Yesterday evening we had a chance to tour the town and its bar life. It was a little confusing at first to find where we were going, but we found our way.

At the railway station on our way out of town, my German skills were put to the test. We, Sam, Jon, Zach and I, stepped onto the station for the S-Bahn and noticed a woman on the opposite side trying to purchase a case of cigarettes. She was clearly confused why it wasn’t working, but started shouting at Jon, the one who has the least amount of German (He’s the only one who hasn’t taken any German class prior this trip). She was just trying to find some help and Jon picked that up from her body language and the way she was saying things. I intervene saying “Er spricht kein Deutsch” and she just started laughing. Apparently it was funny that he didn’t know any German. I ran across the station to go aid her instead.

She wasn’t frustrated over it; she just wanted to know what was wrong with the damn machine. As she was explaining her problem, I didn’t know that it was the wrong currency, and neither did she. I got scared and just asked her in English if she spoke English. She just started laughing because she thought I was kidding. So apparently she didn’t believe me that Jon actually didn’t speak any German. The problem wrong in her situation was that she was trying to use Russian currency in a German machine; it just spat her money out every time. In my Minnesotan gesture, I guess I made a zero uncharge exchange because I just gave her a 2 Euro coin in exchange for the one that looked like it. She gave me a great blessing, basically saying I should have the greatest of nights and lives. Rather nice was this Russian-German lady.

After getting off the S-Bahn that same night, we immediately ran into a bachelorette party. The bride stood up on the bench by the station and told us to sing for her. The bride’s friends told her to stand up on the bench and lead a song with a group of five strangers. It would have been great if Joel hadn’t gone to bed, because than it would have been just five us ready for her to sing with, but we had to wait for someone else to come join us. They circled up another stranger and we sang We are the Champions by Queen. Switching keys and skipping verses, we got through it pretty quickly, but we stayed afterword to talk with the group. They were fascinated that Americans were in town, so they immediately asked why we were here. After that, a different person basically talked to one of individually, which was pretty impressive. The woman I talked to barely had a German accent. I could only tell it was there because one of two grammar slip ups and some of her vowels (I forget which one). I actually didn’t ever catch her name, but she went to school in Los Angeles for a year and really didn’t like it. I was pretty disappointed because we could have shown her all the cooler places in the midwest to go to instead. She was thinking about coming back to visit for a little while, if not stay.

After having probably a half hour discussion with this group, we left to go party at the Irish Pub that we located earlier. It was pretty impressive because a band, that was either really loud or extremely talented, started to play American music from the 70s and 80s.

Based on the banner behind them, I guess they were called the Gentle Sessions. That also might be the name of a recurring event at this bar, but either way, they were playing very nicely. When were started to order, the first thing I said was “Tut mir leid. Wir sprechen nur Englisch hier.” I didn’t want to be ordering everyone’s drinks for them so I just told her we only speak English here. It made me feel bad at first. I was wondering what sort of connotation could someone take in that situation. She could have understood it as a sassy remark meaning that we haven’t even tried to learn the language or even the culture. She was a nice woman, though, with brown hair, glasses. When she understood that we speak English more than German apparently I had an accent that fooled her otherwise. She thought I was lying at first, but recognized that my American accent is far better than my German one.

Being complemented in such a way really brightened my day considering I’m not sure how easy it is to navigate these streets with my level of German vocabulary. I’ll still be able to survive when I travel on my own, but it’s just a little strange to transition to that sort of speech and thought pattern. I still dreamed in English last night and I was furious when I woke up.

Well, not furious, but a little mad.

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