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Day 1: Taking a Walk in the Rain

May 3, 2010

After checking into our hotel, it was time to get out into Munich. Our first stop, the Hofbrauhaus. I wish I had some place to compare this massive beer hall with for you. Maybe if you went to Faneuil Hall in Boston and filled it with long picnic tables, inside and out. Even though we were cold, tired, and a little wet, I think we all waited we great anticipation for our first beer. We all grabbed our liter mugs of Hofbrau and raised them together and, at least for me, we finally arrived in Germany.

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I enjoyed a liter of Hofbrau Dunkel and a lunch of Wienerschnitzel. A couple of folks in our group had studied here in Munich so they were familiar with the food, the language, and the lay of the land. We could probably have stayed there for the rest of the day, enjoying pints and watching the fine people of Munich drink and enjoy each others company. But we had to keep moving – off to the Chinese Tower in the English Garden.

There we arrived, after a half hour walk through the city then the park. The English Garden is just north of downtown Munich and is 10 times the size of Central Park. At the Chinese Tower, there was a beer garden. Even sitting in the rain, it was a wonderful experience. At the table next to ours, three generations from the same family celebrated a birthday, enjoying their liters of Hofbrau. I was struck by how comfortable and simple it seemed.

Too bad we don’t enjoy this leisure in the states. What a wonderful thing it would be. Just imagine, sitting outside, in the middle of a beautiful park, enjoying a pint of Harpoon IPA or UFO Hefeweizen.

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