Part 1 - Intro / Part 2 - A meal / Part 3 - Cars, Beer and Religion / Part 4 - About my worksite and where I might end up / Part 5 - The CastleView hotel / Part 6 - Austria / Part 7 - The Darkeness at the end of the tunnel /

Cars, Beer and religion

Germany is a different country. I guess all of Europe is not quite like America. Although there is nothing quite like driving a rented 120hp BMW. I don't really drive it, my coworker rented, it. That's another debate. It's a change of environment to say the least. The weather has been rather mediocre. Rather rainy and cold. My co-workers think it's un-seasonable for it to be snowing in Munich in September. Go figure.

I'm not much of a fan of Oktober-fest. Or whatever the local beer-festival is. Personally it's not my cup of tea to sit around, while they smoke, drink beer, and talk in German. Plus in these small town there's always some sort of festival to beer set up somewhere. Jessica, I don't know if it was you who said this, but I think Italy might be a bit friendlier. Plus the food's better. Even if I did order some pretty mediocre risotto at the dinner with our sales manager, and took a bit of ribbing, for ordering Italian food at a German restaurant. Although typical German fare is quite heavy. The Chinese food here is ... well. If the Italian food can be mediocre here, the same can be said for the Chinese.

Here's a photo of me and the waitress. She's married to a German Guy, but go figure, I still end up finding the fob in a german town.

Anyhow, Europe has a very western - feel. As if it's a place with tradition, on top of all the burdens of modernism. I can't tell the difference between the Lutherans, Episcopal, Catholic, and Orthodox. Are they all Christians, or do we not consider non evangelicals proper Christians. I'm not sure what to make of some of the religious traditions here. What do I do again with the holy water in the basins.

Of course these guys exist out here as well. That is a Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's witnesses?
Anyhow, the Church of Scientology has been banned here.

Plus there's this obsession with techno music. I'm sick of this simple "...hei... ha... ahemma hemma ... hei... ha... " back beat driven electronica music. Does everything need a techno-back beat to it? It's either that or the mindless european syntho pop. I wouldn't imagine that the music doesn't exist in the US, after who else could write a song like "I want to be a girl... just for a day."

Acutall that song is known as "the Ketchup song" and it's going to be the next Macarana scary thought

So in protest I put on some big bad voodoo daddy at the office. Our stoic German manager, cracked a smirk.
And they responded by asking the band at the oktoberfest concert to play "My Way" by Frank Sinatra. They asked if I liked that kind of music rather than the Oompa-Polka stuff. My retort was to ask the same stoic German manager, if I could dance on the table like the drunk people in front. And I wasn't even drunk, although he might have been. He simply encouraged me. Hmm... I wonder if they take pride in making fun of the Americans.

I'll try and get some more photos on the site.

Travel can be kind of lonely if you're by yourself. And I'm sick of the co-worker I'm with. Although I can joke around with him, there's wearisome sense of sarcastic humor we seem to share which is driving me nuts.
I work on the software. He works on the hardware, Just that phrase carries with it a whole connotation sexual innuendo. He calls me feminine, I tell him to loosen up. He sees a man in drag, and tells me that's the woman for me. I tell him, he must be really blind, or desparate to not know that's not a woman.
After seven days, I can't stand him. I suppose you can call it a prelude for marriage. There's a difference. Most people in America get married because there's some sort of compatibility.

But for us there's no overlap. There's a good reason we're not married, and why some people should never get married. No shared experiences, no compatibilities except work. We have no friends, no cultural common ground. He may only be a few years older than me, but we come from different worlds.
He came to the United States with ICM, which ironically is a Christian organization. But considers himself a Buddhist. I'm not praying to convert him. I've learned a bit about Buddism, there is a sense of justice, a sense of faith, and even a sense of grace. Because there's an idea that because you're reborn, karma never leaves you, and anyone else for that matter. You can rest assured, there is justice in the world, and that the past, the present and the future, are inextricably intertwined in a never ending cycle of life, death and rebirth. But the most interesting idea is that having a childlike faith, is more valued and closer to nirvana than all the philosophical, academic question. To not be troubled about why, and to accept fate as Karma. To quesion, is to allow the soul to suffer for lack of the truth.

And the topic of our conversation... and why he's so mad at me. He keeps calling me a wuss, for thinking that women should be just as good drivers as men. There's no inherently biological reason why women are worse drivers than men? He thinks by nature women can't make decisions and don't have the reaction skills meant to be good drivers. So in a typical confrontational manner I called him sexist. He said, that it was just because I was culturally an American. I'd like to think the idea of equality and not being prejudicial is a fundamental truth, rather than a sociological construct.

More To come

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