Germany's Oktoberfest is the world's largest folk festival, and an important manifestation of German culture and food. It is also very, very fun, as I learned last Thursday. Early morning found me gathering up a freshly charged camera, a warm scarf, and my wallet, and meeting the other Heidenheim inbounds and a Rotarian and his wife to board the train to Munich. The train to Munich was a festival in itself. Everyone was wearing traditional German dress--lederhosen for men, a dirndl for women--or at least a German-style hat or scarf patterned with edelweiss.
After a 2 hour train ride, we arrived in Munich. We walked up, through a crowded train station, and came up in the heart of Germany. As we stepped into the Oktoberfest proper, I was blown away by the noise, smells, and sights, and over it all, the skyline of Munich.
First we saw the Bavaria, an old monument in Munich, and ate some lunch overlooking the festival.
The festival was huge. We walked aisles and aisles of food, haunted houses, souvenir shops and rides.
We listened to a German band playing traditional music, people-watched, rode a roller coaster, and ate delicious spiced nuts.
It was a long, long day, and at the end I was exhausted. I had not thought of going to Oktoberfest before Rotary invited me, but I am so glad I got to go experience this part of German culture.