Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Berlin day three (part two)

“Can we stay down here for a bit?” Alexei asks several times when we get to Weber Wiese U-Bahn station. “It’s nice and cool down here on the platform.” He’s not wrong. But we’ve an appointment to keep. With Dolores. Never good to keep her waiting. At least Alexei sent her a message to warn that we’d be 30 minutes later than originally planned.

“Andrew can you stop walking so fast and dodging between people. It’s really fucking annoying.” The sun is getting to Alexei, again. And Andrew’s habit of walking stupidly fast. There’s Andrew at the front sprinting and me at the rear snapping. It’s driving Alexei nuts. He want to keep the column united.

Dolores has nabbed the same seat that we had yesterday. They are just about perfect. I’m parched and Dolores hasn’t brought any soft drinks, as I’d expected.

“I’ll go and get some from the Vietnamese shop.” I volunteer.

It seems further than I remember. I’m getting even hotter. I feel like passing out on the way back and have to pause for a while. Though it could be due to necking that bottle of impulse Schnapps a bit too quickly.

When I return, the kids are most of the way through 40 cl of cider. Andrew is now looking better than I feel. “I see you’re feeling better again, Andrew.”

“Don’t start with that crap again, dad.”

As Schönramer is close, and has half litre glasses, I decide to go there.

“Anyone else want a beer?”

“Yes, please.” They all reply. “Half a litre.”

“Can you manage to carry them all?” Dolores asks.

“No problem, the glasses have handles. I can easily manage two in each hand.”

Which I can. Though they are quite heavy. Not sure how far I could carry them. My admiration for beer garden waitresses who can manage five litres in each fist goes up immensely. They must have strong arms.

We stick with Schönramer Pils for the next round. I’m, at heart, a very lazy person. It is very hot. And the Schönramer is pretty nice. When otherwise will I can chance to drink it?  That’s how I justify it to myself.

While I’m waiting for the next round to be poured, Andreas Krennmair and his wife roll up. We’d arranged to meet somewhere around here.

Andreas recently published "Historic German and Austrian Beers for the Home Brewer". Which is sort of a Germanic version of my Vintage Beer book. Andreas himself is from Austria, but lives in Berlin.

I talk with Andreas about historic brewing while his wife and Dolores chat about Derry Girls. They’re both big fans.

Dolores fetches me and Alexei a sausage. Thüringers, of course. They’re still dead good. We’ve barely walked more than 20 metres from our seats today. I call that a win. I’m just sticking with the Schönramer. I’m really starting to get a taste for it. Much more so than yesterday. Sometimes you need a few pints to truly get the measure of a beer.

We don’t stay too late. It’s starting to get more crowded and rowdy.

The shopping Dolores did this morning was mostly provisions for the journey back. “What sort of beer do you want?” She asked.

“Some Bock.”

“Any particular type?”

“No,  just Bock.”

Back in our room, Dolores shows me the only Bock she could find: Maisel & Friends Chocolate Bock. She can see that I’m not impressed.

“It’s the only one they had, honestly.”

I take Andrew with me and head off to Rewe to see if she’s right.

Mmm. I can find Kindl Heller and Dunkel Bock, lurking there in full view. While I’m busy with them, Andrew grabs a bottle of whiskey.

“It’s produce of the USA and Canada according to the label, dad. That sounds classy.” He takes it anyway.

“Look. Dolores,” I say when we return “Bock. Two types.”

“It wasn’t there before. Honestly.” There’s that word again: honestly.

Our room has a kitchen, including a decent-sized fridge. With a freezer compartment. Dolores brought some bags for making ice cubes. Very handy in this weather. I can ice my beer. Which I do. I make no apologies.

Dolores has also bought a huge pile of Berliner Pils for the kids. A couple of six packs of bottles plus some cans. I hope it’s going to be enough.

Yesterday’s leftovers are enough to feed me and the kids. Now there’s value for you. My duck is just as yummy as a day ago. Man, that place is good.

We spend the evening gazing at the sunset on the roof terrace. This time we’ve grabbed the longer seats and can lie decadently down. The day slowly slipping away. We retire to our beds at ten.


John Coates said...

Hey Ron,

Sorry to have missed you! I ended up in the same situation in which I mean drinking a lot of Schonramer Pils, maybe a few minutes after you rolled out. Maybe I'll catch you next year.

Lightweight said...

Gotta say, I love these travel posts. Unfortunately, they make me quite thirsty and I always forget to read them in the evening, so I have to wait a bit till I can quench my thirst.
Ah, the struggles we endure!

Dan Klingman said...

You might need to start a sideline gig writing for the Berlin Tourist Board.