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Trip Start Oct 18, 2012
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Flag of Germany  , Baden-Württemberg,
Saturday, March 23, 2013

Howdy folks,

It has been a busy week of sports this week with the Grand Prix starting in Melbourne on Sunday and the German Ice Hockey (DEL) playoffs starting as well. I got Steffie's mother's ticket to go to the first game of the first round against Wolfsburg Grizzly Adams and it promised to be a good game. I decided to stand up on the top rows to see if the view was better and after the first two periods the score was 2:0. I went down to join Paula behind the goals and the game turned around. After a couple of interesting penalties and some confusion on the Grizzly's bench about how many players they had on the ice, the score was tied just before the end of the third. With the game moving into overtime, the Grizzly's scored during a powerplay and that was that.

On Friday I met Lin after school for lunch and together we climbed the Königstuhl. It was interesting to see just how much things had changed in a week. All the snow had melted and we climbed up the Himmelsleiter (Stairway to Heaven) from the Schloss in 35 minutes. On the way down it took 30 minutes because the way is a little longer.

On Saturday morning, I attempted to make my first hot cross buns. They didn't have hot cross buns in Canada and Germany doesn't seem to do them either. Growing up with them every Easter, it is something I had to remedy. I found a recipe on the net and it took quite a bit of prep work because baking with yeast is a little more complicated. I didn't have the right spices so I used Spekulaas spice and my crosses weren't perfect. Nevertheless everybody seemed to like them and I should try them again before the weekend.

That afternoon, I went to my first German football game with Kim. We went to see SV Waldof Mannheim 07 play against Karlsruher SC. A lot of the teams here have the year they were founded in their club name and some teams are over 100 years old. They played a home game at the Carl Benz Stadion near Luisenpark and there was talk of 15,000 fans attending: pretty good considering that it isn't the national league. There were 3,000 fans coming up from Karlsruhe and they had a police escort from the railway station - such is the hooliganism of football. They occupied the West Wing with the local fans in the East Wing at the Otto Siffling stand.

We got there an hour before play and sat down while the fans were already in attendance. They started chanting, which I couldn't understand and the game was delayed 10 minutes while all of the away supporters were not yet there. At the kickoff the home fans already let off black and blue flares which looked cool, but certainly made the playing conditions difficult. The away team managed to score twice in the first half, which was no surprise as they are the league leaders. One of the most interesting things was watching a beer guy walking around with a keg wrapped in insulation pouring out beers for all the lazy people so they wouldn't have to get up from their seats!

During the break it was obvious that the small club tuckshops weren't enough to feed the hungry crowds and the lines were quite long. In the second half the home team just couldn't get organised enough to set any real threat although there were plenty of yellow cards for bad behaviour and the away team seemed to fall over just by looking at the ball. At the end the 0:2 loss stuck and everyone was just happy to get out of the cold.

After the game, I headed around to Kim's house to meet the girls and have homemade pizza for dinner. The twins have definitely doubled in size since October and are just about ready to start crawling around. It was good to have a few drinks and catch up with everyone while watching Wetten Dass...
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