Tag Archives: Festival

Torn pants… A successful Oktoberfest 

The day at Oktoberfest can start as early as you’d like, but considering our morning in Hurry up and wait! we chose to enjoy the slow beginning and take our time. Plus, we planned on spending a majority of the day walking around the festival and soaking in the warm sun. For a past similar experiences, check out Oktoberfest, outside of the tents.

To start off, we headed for the main train station and walked from there (with the other few thousand). 

    
   
Arriving to the festival, you’d think you were at any other state fair or large amusement park.  With happy crowds of all ages, the sound of excited kids is barely heard over the screaming from the passengers strapped in to the sky high carnival rides. The smell is sweet at times of all the roasted nuts and candy coated treats. If you’re near the edges, the scent of bratwurst battle the air with fried chips and smoked fish.

     
This stubborn German (such a rare find – to be said in an exaggerated voice) said I could only take a photo of his “stein tower” if he was in it or I paid him.  Jokes aside, I got the pic. 

      
 
2 things about the next collage. 

#1. I love the sea of dirndls and lederhosen sitting so patiently waiting for the ride.

#2. I wonder if the graphics on the backdrop would be allowed in the United States. Just a thought.

   
 
Even our girls hopped on one! 

 
Check out these swings.  A single person or doubled up… I want to do both! 

   Not up for the stomach twisting tilt-a-whirls? Just hang out with the other thousand sitting by the famous Bavaria Statue.   All of the upside down activities not treating you well? Just look for the red cross balloon!  
After hours of wandering around, we decided for one last hoorah in a tent. Instead of the rowdy group, we went for an old fashioned tent with traditional dancing and locals that… lets say… this isn’t their first go round. 

     

   
  This was a first for all of us. Chairs up and last ones out of the building? I’m honored. 
 As you can imagine, leaving the festival provided a show for itself with stumbling toes, unrecognizable conversations (if you call them that) and plenty of smiles. I’ve been coming to this event for years and there never seems to be room for fights. I think that’s amazing considering the amount of adult beverages consumed in such a short time. Keep up the spirited energy! The bottom photo is Florian actaully passing out high-fives, well done my friend… Well done.
 Coolest photo of the night was snagged by Carina. Gorgeous!    
The final train ride home and a walk of fresh air was the perfect ending to our festivites. 
  
“Hayden, are your shorts torn”? Oktoberfest was a success!

 
I predict a solid night sleep ahead…

  

Question:

If you only got one day at Oktoberfest, would you choose an outside experience or a day inside the tents?

 

Theresienwiese

Dirndl: a traditional dress typically worn in southern Germany primarily in Bavaria during Oktoberfest.

Lederhosen: a mans traditional outfit worn in southern Germany primarily in Bavaria during Oktoberfest.

Beer: the number one liquid (even over water) consumed during the 16 day festival.

Time to experience Bavaria Germany at the worldwide known event! Feel free to read Hurry up and wait! to see how we made it to this moment.

Once the doors open there are 2 rules, no running and no standing on the table tops.  Other than that, first come-first serve.  Ready, set, GO!  
 
Once  you’ve claimed your table, you sit patiently like children in the classroom waiting for cupcakes and chocolate milk. The menu is on the table for the ordering all day and the beers start flowing from out of nowhere!

  

    
 Quick story of the day: Carina and Jenni ordered Weisswurst (a white Bavarian sausage) that requires the removal of a thin skin before you can eat the meat.  I’m used to this process after witnessing in times past, however my sweet girls clearly had never seen such a thing. Please… please enjoy this sequence of photos I captured during the removal of the skin! 

 

 
Well that was fun.
All righty, lets take a look around and share the glorious energy of thousands of people gathering to celebrate! In no specific order, here’s a series of photos for your own personal tour through the eyes of my camera. 

    
     
     
     
     

      

     

Did I mention that we were still having a blast? My cheeks began to hurt from the laughing, singing and smiling. The energy all around just keeps you going!

   Year after year, we’ve kept our classic photo a tradition!
 

  
 

End of the day? Yep.

Hopefully that gave you a decent idea of the fun to be had inside the tents at Oktoberfest. Tomorrow will bring a solid vision of what’s happening on the outside during these festivities! 

Random Oktoberfest facts:

Oktoberfest started as a celebration of the wedding between Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig and his wife, Princess Therese. 

There is approximately 1.8 million gallons of beer served every year at this festival.

Paris Hilton is banned for Oktoberfest due to inappropriate dress attire while trying to promote a new product.

Over 4,000 lost and found items turn up by the end of these shenanigans. Last year items included 350 cell phones, 520 wallets, over 1,000 passports, 370 pairs of glasses, 425 sets of keys, 1300 items of clothing, and at least one set of dentures. Even 48 children were lost, then found. 

Hurry up and wait!

The 4 of us left Bochum early to make our way to Munchen knowing the others would soon trail behind by driving themselves the following day.

11 hours on a crowded overnight bus (with team chatterbox behind us) made the 12th hour of transit seem refreshing and oddly easy. Once we made it to the main station in Munich, we took a small train called the SBahn to the nearest stop of our new home.  From there, we made the final stretch into a suburban neighborhood. I’m sure due to lack of sleep, the long walk was mostly silent. However, total exhaustion fuled random bursts of spontaneous giggles. You know the feeling!

  
So imagine this, 3 Americans, 3 Germans and me looking for a place to share. Considering the popularity of Oktoberfest, most accomodations are booked solid months ahead of time and if they’re not, the price is beyond unreasonable.  With 7 of us wanting to stay together, our other option was sharing a dorm room in a hostel which comes with a dozen strangers and a complementary shared public bathroom. 

Been there, did that… so we found something else!

Our perfect location was a treasure rental that is owned and operated by an extremely accommodating host.  With his gentle energy Jorj was there to meet, greet and help with whatever he could during our stay. I didn’t get a photo of him, so please check out his page by clicking here.

Just outside of the city, we (voluntarily) packed into a quaint 2 bedroom, one bath apartment. Down stairs provided an open kitchen, the bathroom with washer and a dining table big enough for all of us to gather around. 

   
 A couple of cute decorations added a bit of character to our little home away from home. 

 The bed I chose was down stairs tucked in a cubby that actaully provided some of the best sleep I’ve gotten on this entire trip! (Thank you amazing-o-friends for letting me have “first dibs”)

The rest of the crew had their pick from 6 spots upstairs. By stairs, I mean a completely vertical walking ramp with hand rails and a warning from the owner.  These things are dangerous with too many proasts at the festival!   

   
We’ve all made it!  

 
It’s early to bed since the morning brings a 4:30 alarm clock. If you recall in recent years, the chances of getting in a tent if you’re not there by sunrise becomes slim and hardly likely. For entertainment purposes, please read Inside the tents!  to see what the traditional morning race entails! Here’s a clip from the crowd of eager attendees in years past.
  
The 4 of us who have been before spent days preparing the others for the exciting bright rise and struggle to the gates. With success, we were all able to get up, dressed and ready (rememebr 5 girls, 2 boys and one bathroom) in time to beat the sun in the German sky. Awful photos, but you get the idea.

 On time and in transit!

  
Finally arriving to the festival grounds, we continued to amp up our group in regards to the battle that’s ahead.  The crowds… the elbows.. the sea of dirndls and lederhosen… are you ready!?  

 
WHAT?! Are you ready for an empty lot with a couple cleaning crew members and a few other confused people?  I don’t even think I knew what this wooden floor looked like from years past! We finally came to the conclusion that it was our first attempt during the week verses a Saturday morning. Turns out it’s easier when a portion of the city has to go to work.   

 
Well, we did what we do best… which is to make the best of it!  A few fun pictures, some hair play and 3 hours of meeting new friends as we watched the crowd slowly expand.       

What’s behind that door?  Our entire day of festivites patiently awaiting our arrival!

  

Doors open! To be continued…
   

Would you rather be 3 hours early or 30 minute late?

  

Festival in Juayua, El Salvador

We’ve made it to the weekend food festival to see what we can find while exploring the tiny streets of Juayua, El Salvador. This celebration happens weekly and brings other locals in as well as the random backpacker or traveling photographer.

Instead of the usual “story”, I’m going to break this post down into easy to view sections to give you a clear idea of this energetic day. You really cant make a wrong turn as you follow the streets lined with venders, music, people, and entertainment. So, please turn on your mind and open your eyes as you enjoy these photos!
I’m going to start out with my two favorite pictures of the day that capture the essence of the youth to the elderly of this brilliant village.

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Entertainment! As you devour the local food and shop through the vendors, there is constantly stimulation all around you.

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Care to get your nails done mid festival?

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I’m sure you’re hungry by now…

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Crazy corn! On the cob drizzled with a mustard mixture and red sauce then rolled in parmesan.

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This is a lettuce bowl lined with boiled yuca, topped with coleslaw, salsa and chicharrón (fried pieces of pork rind or some kind of fatty fried pork… Yeh, not for me).

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Snow cones!

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Tamarind balls coated in sugar.

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Fruit and veggies (my favorite!)

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Finally, let’s just take a stroll and see what the streets have to say.

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New friends…

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…and a handstand of course!

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I’ll leave you with my “creative” photo from the day. Thank you Juayua!

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6 buses, 1 mini taxi and French Salvadorian food

We’ve seen the city, ate on the coast, stayed in the jungle and now we’re off to a small village called Juayua (sounds like “why-you-uh”). It’s about 3 hours by bus northwest of San Salvador and is known for their food festival and waterfalls, sign me up!
We could of payed for the easy route, but moms with me now (sneaky giggle here) so backpacker style we go with 4 bus transfers and a 9 block walk, totaling $1.70 start to finish.
Lucky for us, Walter was heading in the same direction so we got to tag along with a local for the trip. Let’s begin!

We start with a walk to the end of our block and catch #52 for $0.20 I would of snapped photos inside the bus, but it was standing room only which required a death grip on anything in site as the driver took this thing for what felt like drunken joy ride.

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Next is a quick walk passing these mini venders to hop on the next bus numbered 4 at $0.25. Ps, it’s 6:30 in the morning.

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For the third transfer we’re on a larger bus that takes us about an hour farther in our journey for $0.75. Here’s the bus terminal as we depart with a few pictures from the trip to our final bus.

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Woohoo, final bus at $0.50. Not the one in the photo, I just got a kick out of all the bling. Check out the crowds and the goodies that they offer. Each time the bus stops, a few locals will hop on selling candy, fruit, bread or juice.

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We finally arrive to our hostel in Juayua (description later) just long enough to throw down our bags and head off to a highly recommended restaurant in the side town of A’Taco. Side town? Yes, meaning another bus! I’m stoked and mom is… ready to eat. This bus included the usual sale of goodies and a mini taxi ride to follow.

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Finally made it to our colorful dainty restaurant for some fun eats and tasty drinks. Introducing El Botón!

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You may question our choice of French food in El Salvador, so let me explain. Tomorrow we’ll be walking the streets at a local festival eating from all of the venders plus, this magnificent place is known for organic goat cheese (made right here) and their sangria. Enough said.

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Time for a handstand shot and a quick sample offered from a local woman who saw me trying to peak at what she was eating. The following picture of mom is while we were waiting for the bus home. Can you find our new friend? These are just a few examples of the kind people that compliment this beautiful country.

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Finally the bus ride back for a good night of rest before the food festival. They always say “Do as the locals do”. So I did.

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