Richard Strauss Square, Munich
Left Prague by bus enroute to Nuremberg to catch a train to Munich. The Prague bus station (which is also the train station) was built sometime in the early 1900's and it looked as if it had not been dusted since then. There wasn't so much a bus platform, as a door, and it didn't make us feel much better when our taxi driver told us he "thought" he was dropping us at the correct door.
It seemed as if every bus in Prague stopped outside this door -- there were public transit buses, tourist buses, and buses to the airport.
We were travelling with the Deutsche Bahn again, so we were confident it would be OK, and after some recon we noticed a sign: "DB/Nuremberg". Exactly on time, a clean, sparkling white bus, with the red DB logo, pulled up beside the sign.
Leaving via highway showed a better developed side of the Czech Republic with large business and commercial malls along the road leaving Prague. It was nightfall quite soon, so there was not much to see as we crossed the border into Germany but when we arrived at the Nuremberg train station, we had that "we're definitely not in Kansas anymore" feeling -- so great was the difference between the Prague and the Nuremberg stations. No dust in sight, just clean modernity everywhere and a train that left exactly on time to whisk us into Munich.
We had only one day in Munich and it turned out it was the day of the 25th annual Munich marathon. The streets were filled with 18,000 runners and almost as many cheerleaders. It was all very exciting -- for everyone and gave us a nice introduction to the easy going people of Munich (are they Municans? Munichonians? Munikers??). Had the best beer and meal of the trip (so far) in a gay restaurant bar. The waiter was polite and bemused with us, and it was not until after we had finished our second beer that we took note of our surroundings. I can only say there was something very stylized about the experience -- i expected Marlene Dietrich to strut out at any minute, singing in that throaty voice of hers.
|25th Annual Munich Marathon|
|Munich apartment building|
|lots of Bavarian influence|