Friday, October 26, 2012

Oktoberfest Beauties

Munich, Germany

October 3, 2012

A big park with many tents and many options for those who don't drink beer. The site is a large park. There was no admission fee, but in order to get a table at one of the beer tents with a meal, I was told the reservations must be made more than a year in advance. Many organizations book tables like they would book luxury boxes for sports. I was on my own to explore the site and had a fine time. I really enjoyed the many different styles of liederhosen and dirndl.



Those hearts are gingerbread cookies that friends, family and lovers give each other as decoration. I tried eating part of one. Not great. But really great gingerbread was for sale at the candy counters.

Those bags have really great nougat and gingerbread.

There were many heart-cookie vendors.

One of the beer tents. Really, a permanent structure.

1972 Olympic Park

Munich, Germany

October 3, 2012

Looking back 40 years Munich hosted an Olympic games with the intention of erasing the legacy of Nazi Germany and the Berlin games of 1936. Instead, a hostage taking and murder of 11 Israeli athletes was the dawn of modern security perimeter that the games have become. Still, what is left behind is a marvel of 20th century architecture, a sweeping canopy of glass. An inviting and mesmerizing spyrograph of contours, lines and horizons.

Two things occurred to me right away, first, how small the venues were yet optimized for viewing like the television sets I've seen at ABC, NBC and elsewhere. It has been said that the Rome games in 1960 were the first to be designed for TV, and that design philosophy continued in earnest here. Second, how much it is now a park with the illusion of being miles away from civilization when it nestled inside the ring road freeway that surrounds Munich. A taxi driver told me that before that ring road was built for the games, central Munich had the largest continuous traffic jam in all of Europe. Germans are so proud of their traffic jams!

From the BMW site across the street.

A clever reuse of an arena for youth soccer.

Neo-modern vending trucks.

A tower with, I'm sure, an amazing view. I declined to go up. Actually, it wasn't obviously open to visitors.

The architecture took to the landscape.

Strength married to supplety.

This is where Mark Spitz won his 7 gold medals in swimming. Pretty small for an international venue. Again, it seems, scaled for television.

Has internationalization gone too far? Either this could be the best currywurst you've ever had or...

The shadow captures what's behind me, making this a 360 degree view.

Those light towers are leaning in towards the stadium.

The stadium is embedded into the landscape instead of towering over it.

The ticket booths.

More views to enjoy.

The lake made for great reflections and a quiet place to reflect.

This reminds me of the default oil painting replicas that keeps popping up in hotel rooms.

Are hiking boots back in style? Had I asked them, I would probably would have learned the German phrase for, "get lost." People are so sensitive about their choice of footwear these days. :-)