Written by Jessica October 7, 2013
There is no feeling quite like crossing out a line on my bucket list. It means the days of letting my mind wander are done, and there’s no need to google any more pictures. It happened, and I must say Oktoberfest was much more than I could have ever imagined.
My bucket list consists mainly of events rather than places. Although I find that places are enjoyable, I feel that immersing myself in the culture of the location through an event is what will give me the experience I am seeking. Oktoberfest in Munich was second on the list, just after the World Cup. As I said I prefer events, and the World Cup is still first on the list regardless of where it is held. Yet Oktoberfest was something that always intrigued me. It seemed like an event that could only truly be realized by attending it. Before my venture to the festival I had somewhat of an idea through pictures and stories, but it didn’t come close to grasping what I encountered.
I didn’t anticipate tents that sat 10,000 people. Or beautiful horses hauling rose covered carriages. I wasn’t prepared to be flipping in a roller coaster after eating sausages and enjoying German beer. I wasn’t expecting an experience that would make me feel as lively as I did.
Waking up at 5:30 in the morning to begin the day wasn’t a task, but rather a pleasure. I didn’t need anything to awake me, my own excitement did it. The light mist from the morning rain didn’t seem to damper anything. Nothing would be able to contain my enthusiasm for that day.
In the first tent we entered, I was joined by four fellow American students, a 20 year old from Canada who was backpacking, and five girls from Germany. We sat down after the scurry of the doors opening, and almost immediately a beer maid greeted us with Munich brewed beer. The woman had mugs in each hand, making the serving process look simple. After a short lesson in German drinking songs from the locals, we enjoyed.
A while later we were served lunch and began feasting on pretzels, sausages, and sweet mustard. Each bite tasting better than the last, and contributing to the taste of the Munich brewed beer. The sausage was a light grey, and normally my inner picky eater wouldn’t have even given a thought about trying it. Yet when I took my first bite an explosion of flavor happened. There was a crunch from the outside then a burst of juices coming from the inside. The next bite was dipped in a dark yellow, almost brown mustard. I was expecting a more sour taste, as in American mustards, yet it turned out to be sweet, and and complimenting the extra grease of the sausage.
The day stayed in this pattern, and we didn’t feel the need to leave. We could see the line outside the door as dozens stared in while standing in the cold rain. We continued to ask the other students about their lives and Oktoberfest. With each story a new friendship was made, and more German culture was discovered. Oktoberfest holds much more, and only those who indulge in it can truly feel its adventure.