Last night was epic! Definitely in the top 3 best nights I have had since arriving in Europe :)
When we arrived at the fest, it was not what I was expecting at all. I don't know what I had in mind, but this looked exactly like the little town carnivals that went on all around Ohio when I was growing up! There were all the various food booths, the carnival games for stuffed animal prizes, and rides like bumper cars and a ferris wheel. There were a few differences in that the food booths held German goodies like bratwurst, rolls, and crepes; you can buy the stuffed animals from the game booths if you don't want to play; and the ferris wheel seats could spin in circles. I swore that it would have to be my cheat night because I wanted to eat something from every food booth I saw!
The best parts were the Beer Tent/Garden and the Wine Garden! We got there a bit early and were afraid that they wouldn't be selling beer yet because the Mayor hadn't tapped the official first keg yet- silly us, of course they were already selling beer! This is Germany, isn't it!?
The tent was huge and mostly empty when we got there, so we sat down at an empty fest table to save some seats for friends and each ordered a liter fest beer. They serve food in the tents as well, and if I wouldn't have just eaten my own chicken dinner, I would have definitely enjoyed a lovely fest chicken. Fest chicken is the best rotisserie chicken you will ever eat in your life. Ever. I could eat them every meal of the day and never get sick of their crispy skin goodness. Our friend Rocky had a pork shoulder that looked absolutely drool-worthy and Cody had some brats in rolls. I couldn't help myself from having an order of fries; I've been craving them all week!
The night rolled on, we ran into people we knew, our friends arrived, their friends arrived, more of our friends arrived, and we made a new friend who I like to call Old Eric (he's German, too cute!). As the tent filled up, the band played mixes of German and American music, and we all prost-ed more times than I can count. A ton of beer was consumed and everybody in the tent was dancing in the aisles and on their benches. At one point, I tagged along with Rocky and Shannon to the wine garden and was in awe of the fact I was staring straight at a medieval fortress- Rocky said the wall was built in the 1300s. There truly is no other place in the world like this, and no place I would rather be!
We rode the ferris wheel even though I was kind of scared and every time we got to the top my stomach dropped. It helped to look out and see all the old architecture lit up and beautiful, and to be wrapped up in Cody's arms, of course. Then, all of us rode in the bumper cars and even though our car kept going backwards, I think we did a pretty good job ;) Another huge difference is that you have to pay to use the bathroom trailer, but paying 30 euro cents for a wonderfully clean and fully-functioning bathroom is totally worth it! I know Americans would protest if they had to pay for "the right to pee," but I think Germans know what they are doing (and not just when it comes to the bathroom, either, haha).
At the end of the night, Cody and I were so looking forward to some crepes, but when we exited the beer tent, all the booths had closed down! I was so disappointed (and drunk, so extra disappointed, lol) but it ended up okay, because looking back on it, I saved myself from eating too much non-Paleo food. I wasn't perfect (beer and french fries are definitely not paleo), but my initial plan of gorging on TONS of sandwiches, fried goodies, and sweets didn't occur. Even the ride home was seriously memorable. I won't embarrass any of my car-mates, but even though I was lightly sleeping the whole ride home, I still remember all the mishaps and craziness on what should have been a quick ride home. We totally owe Kevin for coming and collecting our drunk asses. He put up with four of us and I'm not sure I could have put up with one. Even just me by myself was pretty obnoxious: I'm pretty sure before he got there I was sitting cross legged in some grass by the road, pouting that we had to wait so long and didn't even have a crepe to eat. And by the time we got home I got myself drunkenly into a bath and begged Cody to make me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich... drunk me is a total genius, haha.
In the end, all of us arrived home safe and sound, and Cody and I woke up in the morning with the absolute best memories of our first German Fest!!!