German Sushi

IMG_3570-1Last night we went out into Cologne (it’s called Köln in Germany, I am still bemused as to why different countries have different names for the same places) and had Sushi with Vera’s siblings and assorted friends. There were seven people at the table including me, all of whose native language was German, all of whom spoke English because my German is largely non-existent. It’s fairly humbling to realise quite how rubbish my grasp of foreign languages is, and how well other people speak English. Even the waiter spoke English. I consider myself humbled. I can confirm however that sushi is also called sushi in German.

We took the train into Cologne at around about the time that most people are returning from their real world jobs to their real world lives, and it reminded me how much I used to hate commuting. The atmosphere on the train was positively funereal. I think cows have more fun being led to slaughter.

In Cologne, we went into a newsagents, which also happened to sell beer, and bought beer, and drank it on the street as we walked to the sushi restaurant. In Australia, such a practice would be fairly unheard of. First off, you wouldn’t be able to buy beer in a random corner shop. Secondly, drinking beer on the street is mostly forbidden. In the UK, beer is certainly no less ubiquitous, but drinking on the street by ordinary folk must usually be done surreptitiously, or from a brown paper bag whilst you shout at pigeons and passers by. No such legal hassles exist in this land, if you wish to meander the streets of the city drinking a bottle of Kölsch, this is not only your prerogative, it is your right.

After sushi we went to a bar, where I noticed that it is still legal to smoke in bars. Apparently this is due to some legal loophole, not all bars allow smoking, and they have to be a smoking club or something, but still, if you wish to light up in a bar, the option exists. Handy if you wish to smoke and drink, which I don’t, but many do. Additionally, table football is a popular game over here, with the table football table elevated to a location of considerable pride. I am pleased to report that I didn’t win a single game, despite being paired with pretty much everyone we were with. There is a table football table in the house we are living in, so some practice is on the cards.

Finally, we have been granted access to a car, a venerable convertible, and as i understand it we will be using said convertible to head out in the countryside and stay in the family cottage. I’m not sure which gods I pleased to allow this lifestyle to happen for me, but I will continue to burn offerings to them where I can.

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