OKTOBERFEST!!: OR, THE FASTEST COLLECTIVE MOOD CHANGE I'VE EVER EXPERIENCED

  1. 2:00 pm Friday: Four of us in my study abroad program rent a car in Hamburg to down to Munich for Oktoberfest.
  2. 2:00-11:00 Friday: We drive basically the entire country of Germany in about 9 hours on the Autobahn. I was not disappointed by the number of Porches that flew by us.
  3. Midnight Friday: finally get to our airbnb and pass out.
  4. 6:00 am Saturday: wake up, hastily get ready, and get out the door. Stop at a grocery store to get a healthy breakfast of a donut and a beer.
  5. 7:30: make it to the fest and get in line for the tent we're planning to spend the day in. It feels like we're at the end of the line.
  6. 9:00: they finally start letting people in. We find plenty of room in an outdoor eating area and stake our ground. The area around us quickly fills up.
  7. 9:30: servers start bringing out half steins of what could either be strange beer or cola. We are confused.
  8. 9:40: after minutes of agony, our server informs us that because it's the first day, they don't start serving the beer until the first keg is tapped at NOON.
  9. For reference, here's a before picture of when I found out we had to wait hours for the beer we came for.
  10. 9:45-11:00: accepting our unfortunate lot, we order some soda (it was a surprisingly tasty coke/fanta mix) and what turned out to be delicious curry wurst and spaetzle. As an opening act, not bad. We are slightly mollified.
  11. 11:00-11:59: everyone's finished eating. There's a collective pall over the crowd. We're tired from the drive and conversation starts to lag.
  12. 11:59:50: a countdown begins: ... Drei, zwei, eins!
  13. Noon: with glorious German precision, the kegs are tapped and out of the woodwork, servers appear hauling five one liter steins in each hand. Cheers erupt.
  14. 12:05: we get our first steins and all is right in the world. The headliner has finally appeared! Smiling faces abound as the tension breaks.
  15. And here's the after picture.
  16. 12:00-9:00: drink beer, make friends with Italian table mates, learn vulgar Italian hand gestures, drink beer, make friends with couple from Maine, talk to German guy about microbrewery culture in America, drink beer.
  17. 9:00-11:30: finally make our way inside the tent and take in the revelry. At this point, I'm pretty sure I've had about five liters of beer and things get a little hazy.
  18. Midnight: make it back to the airbnb and pass out again.