Here we are in October already! We started the month in a festive way in Munich. What a glorious city Munich is. Obviously, Oktoberfest was our main goal in visiting the city, but there is so much to see otherwise.
The festival was celebrating its 200th anniversary this year. The original Oktoberfest was in fact celebrating the wedding of Ludwig and Teresia in 1810 in Munich. A grand glockenspiel was built to memorialize this event as well. It is in the main square and we all got to hear and see the fabulous display which chimes at 11 o’clock each day. The figurines on the clock dance around a table where the King and Queen sit, and even two knights joust from horseback, one besting the other. There was a huge crowd gathered with us and the crowd reaction to the show rivaled Fourth of July fireworks oohs and ahhs.
From there Philip led the family to the beautiful Dom of Munich. Of particular note was a St. Anthony of Padua side chapel with reliquary where we all lit a candle a prayed for our family and friends. (Now maybe you can all find what you are looking for…)
St. Michael’s church was also spectacular and meaningful to Phil from his summer here of daily masses. The aisle way is lined with huge angel statues, each holding a different symbol from Christ’s passion.
The Goethe Institute is close to this church. This is where Philip studied German in July and August. We all got to meet one of his many teachers, Frau Monja. She authored a children’s German study book which Philip had just bought from a bookstore. After seeing the Institute, Monja took us to a department store where Edy picked out the purple dirndl. (Rachel liked the red one better, but what can you do?) After it was paid for, Edy promptly put it on and wore it all day. She looked so pretty!
The Oktoberfest was HUMONGUS. Frau Monja advised us to go to the “Historical District” within the fest, which was a smart move. It was very family friendly and there were many rides for the kids. The rides were lovely and classy, not like county fair rides. The food was great (brats) and the beer was gut.
Philip rode a couple rides with the kids as well, and Rachel donned her pink dirndl she purchased in Austria 11 years ago. It didn’t fit Rachel in quite the same way as previously, but she fit in the crowds as ALL the women wear dirndls at the Oktoberfest.
We were shoulder to shoulder with others the entire time. But, the people we were shoulder to shoulder with were moms and dads with their small kids. We left at about 5:30pm all tuckered out. Strollers are not permitted after 7pm because of the crowdedness. We saw only the Historical District in our 3 hours there, and there were acres more of the festival, crammed with people, beer flowing.
The train ride back home was packed. It was not for the feint of heart. Libby screaming on Phil’s back, literally the tops of Lucy and Max’s heads all you could see, we were all dehydrated, but we made in back home without missing any transfers or stops. So Many People. Even our train into Munich at 8:30am was full of men in lederhosen and women in fancy dirndls.
The kids were back in school again the next day, an amazing “coincidental recovery” from their “coincidental sicknesses” causing them to miss school the day before….