Saturday, June 16, 2012

Düsseldorf, Germany: Day 10

After a truly long hiatus (yes, I realize this) I'm here to tell you about my experiences in Germany! Homework, sleeping, food, friends and working out (usually in that order) come before this blog! 

I began this day like I did any day at 7:30 and went to class. During our 30-minute break splitting our 4-hour class, a number of my classmates asked me if I wanted to go out that night with then given there was a holiday going on the following day. I complied, thinking "Hey, of course, I'd love to socialize and get to know more people!"

After returning from class, I took my daily nap. (And I swear, there's something thoroughly screwed up with my sleep schedule because I always seem to need to nap to offset my nightly sleep: whether it's at home, college or Germany!)

I was invited by my friends to come to the Altstadt with them at 8:00pm. I prioritized extra nap time and a large, improvised dinner, assuming it was going to be a long and "fun" night. I was very right on both accounts. 

Instead, I met them outside the Heinrich-Heine McDonald's at 10pm. There, I was introduced to a couple of Erasmus University students from France. 

Only some of the great people I hung out with that night. 
More shenanigans ensues.

From there, we went straight to a nearby art museum to mingle. My friend Hendra, was steadfast in filling Marlon and my cups with vomit-inducing 13€ vodka as soon as we took even the slightest of sips. Predictably, good times ensued and disgusting flavors overwhelmed our taste buds. 

Time passed, and we were soon on our way to a club. The enormous line surrounding the outside of the club served to separate our massive party as Jooho and I went to the famous black wall to drain our bladders. 

As we went back to the line, our friends were no where to be found. Jooho tried to call them, but it was no use. 

We waited patiently in the line leading to the strobe-lit club for about an hour or two. While in line I met an array of people from Germany and one from France. After a brief conversation with a fat, drunken man who when he discovered I was from the 'States said roughly, "Hitler is dead. Tell everyone you know." He also suggested I don't go to the club. I took everything he said with the tiniest grain of salt, yet played off everything he said as plausible and continued to nod. 

By the time he had finished elaborating on his wily ideas to me, it was about time to get into the club. Then finally, after all that anticipation and waiting, the bouncer looks at my legs for a millisecond and tells me I can't go because I'm wearing shorts. A girl in line next to me about my age convinces the burly, bald dude and I get in! (A middle-aged couple notice my jacket and the woman starts talking to me about BMWs! It's crazy how friendly Germans are during the weekend!)

I walk in with the girl who got me in and her friends and one of them asks me to take their picture. I do so and after that, cluelessly look around for my friends. It was to no avail, and I tell the four girls my situation. One of them asked me if I wanted to come dance with them. I comply and I dance with them in a circle. Careless whether I embarrass myself, I pull off all the moves I could think of. 

More pictures are taken, and I'm even asked to take a picture with two of the girls! I told them "Ich fühle mich so einschließend!" (I feel so included) as a hand wrapped around my neck and we posed for Facebook. 
The exact "I feel so included" picture. Marle and Juliette, thank you!

During the course of our dancing, I am reluctant to trust my German (even though I should have) because of the volume of the music. One of the girls, Marle did her best to communicate with me in English over the pounding beats. She asks me where my friends are, and I tell her "I'm having more fun with you guys, can I stay?" She says yes, but still urges me to look for my friends. They're no where to be found and I return to the group. 

Sometime after the three girls leave, there's just one of the girls, Juliette and myself. We retreat to the entrance of the club so we can talk more clearly. She orders a water from the bar for [imaginably] some absurd price and offers me half of it. I was as gracious as I was parched and said, "Für mich? Aber ich bin ein unbekannte Person!" (For me? But I'm a stranger to you!) I was astounded at her generosity to reach out to someone she may never meet again and offer half of her water that I'm sure she'd otherwise gladly slurp down alone!

I turn on the 3G and Roaming settings on my phone, aware of how much they cost and of the potential "emergency" situation I could find myself. I opt to use my phone, log onto Facebook and find my friend Hendra sent me a message saying, "my turkish and arabisch friends is not allowed inside man...that;s fucked up..i'm fed up...I am allowed inside but i cannot just leave them out.. I am gonna accompany them... freakin' racist man the bouncer."

I show Juliette the message and we head out. We walk outside, looking for her bike speaking Germanish, as she's trying to accomodate me by speaking in English and I'm trying to do the same in German. 

We find her bike and I ask her where the train station is. She points right down the street, I thank her for everything, we hug and we're off in our separate directions. Oh and it's 5AM. 

As I'm walking to the Heinrich-Heine McDonald's (which surprisingly are supremely popular meet-up spots and lunch places in Germany) that's right next to the U-Bahn station, a man stops me. Again, asking me about my jacket. We start a conversation, and like all my conversations, we ultimately get on the topic that I'm from the USA. He tells me of relatives he has and experiences he has about and in the land of the free. We exchange Facebook information, and I embark on the first leg of my trip home. 

After the U-Bahn and later, S-Bahn rides home, I stumble the dirt path that circumvents a horse ranch I walk every day to school in an eerily-lit sky. As I reach my guest family's door, my guest mother greets me at the door, who has come home equally late. At this hour, it's roughly 5:40 and I brush my teeth as quietly and as briskly as I can image. 

I lie in bed for only moments before I fell asleep. But before I fell fast asleep, I recollected all the incredible people I met that day.

Mein Gott!

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