The alternative title for this post could be – “I am a massive feckin’ eejit”.
Friday night was my school’s Christmas party. Unfortunately, one of my old friends from university was also in town with his parents that day. As usual, wanting to do everything, I arranged to meet them in the afternoon for a drink, thinking I’d still have loads of time to pretty myself up before the party.
One drink turned into, well, more than one drink so I was running way behind schedule when I crashed back into my apartment later that evening. A quick shower, a quick bite to eat and a quick glass of wine with my long-suffering flatmates and I was good to go. I Googled the address, put my free drinks tokens into my wallet and ran to the U-Bahn station.
I thought that the venue for the party was a bit odd – Wittenau is pretty out of the way. But maybe the school had some connection with the area that I didn’t know about. Yes, I was sure that was what it was.
I emerged from Wittenau station just as the heavens opened. Lacking an umbrella and inspired by German engineering and innovation, I pulled a Media Markt plastic bag out of my handbag and attempted to wrap the handles around my ears to keep my hair dry.
Naturally, I took off in the wrong direction, but a helpful passing German turned me around when I stopped to ask him if I was going the right way. I walked along, thinking I was every killer’s dream, as I’d even brought my own plastic bag to help him suffocate me with.
By the time I got to Oranienburger Straße 67, I looked like a drowned rat. But there was also another small problem.
I walked up to the bar and got the bar girl’s attention.
Me: Entschuldigung, das ist Oranienburger Straße 67?
Me: Aber… das ist nicht der richtige Name… (But… it’s not the right name)
The guy beside me at the bar was curious now so he joined in the confusing conversation. I showed him the name of the bar I was actually looking for.
Knut: You know there are at least two Oranienburger Straßen in Berlin, right?
Me: No, I did not know that. Heilige Scheiße. I’ve come all the way across the city only to end up at the wrong bar… oh well, white wine, please. Um, do you think she’d accept these drink tokens?
Knut: Probably not, no.
Me: No, I didn’t think so either.
After I’d got my drink, I took in my surroundings. It seemed that a) I was the only woman in the bar, and b) everyone else was a biker. Having given up on the idea of traipsing back across the city again, I made myself comfortable and settled in for the evening.
By around 3am, I was on first name terms with most of the punters, and Knut was my new best friend. I’d even had a bit of interest in English lessons. All in all, it was great fun. As I’d arranged to go to Dietmar’s for a nightcap, I started to put on my coat (and plastic bag) and asked for my bill.
Knut wouldn’t hear of me paying for myself so he settled the bar tab, called a taxi, and paid the driver in advance so I could travel back to Dietmar’s neighbourhood in style. Don’t you just love Germans?
The next day, I regaled my stunned flatmates with my (mis)adventures. They now think I should have my own reality TV show.