Beach Weather

Trip Start Jan 31, 2010
Trip End Jul 21, 2010

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Rocky's Lilo

Flag of Germany  , Mecklenburg-West Pomerania,
Thursday, May 13, 2010

I wake a few hours later to the sound of rain. My body clock is gone, and I jinxed it. I distinctly remember talking to Hannan about the weather. We couldn't see the stars last night, the clouds hanging low. She commented on how cold it was, and I reply with, it could be worse, it could be raining. I mentioned it again when talk was made about going to the beach tomorrow. Oh well. It’ll be a little like a Melbourne winter then And I got six hours sleep in, totally ruining my body clock in the process. Breakfast no longer exists, looks like it will be brunch, whenever that is. I try to blog quietly and sort out where the heck I’m going after this. After I cannot lie still anymore it’s back in the kitchen for pancakes. I’m loving that I can cook in other people’s homes, to use their kitchens without too much worry. I can tell mornings of hostel breakfasts will be very different. The pancakes are magical; Nadine is impressed, along with complementing the brunch with other equally magic bits and pieces.

Eventually we are tourists, eventually. Before that we have ourselves a little crafternoon (mid morning to afternoon I guess) where I rediscover the art of the heat beads. I haven’t used these things since high school, wicked pieces of plastic that are made to be melted together in crazy patterns. I think the water version contained ecstasy or something and someone got in trouble, I remember getting one of these older ones stuck up my nose and it had no real effect aside from a blocked nose. Oh well. Instead of involving my nose in an accident this time I have a go a melting the whole piece to the kitchen bench. Nadine is without an iron in this house, so I reckon I can totally MacGuyver the thing with a frying pan, possibly still warm from our brunch. First attempts are a little flat, so I heat it up more and press down for all it’s worth, believing the pressure will push the pieces out into on another. And they do, gluing themselves to the red circle template and the paper in the process. Shit…. I peel the shapes off and they work in their own demented way.

So the train to the beach leaves at rather regular intervals, regular enough for us to just miss it and wait at the station, taking in the surrounding conversation of people who can’t wait to get absolutely trashed tonight, tomorrow and on the weekend. Hooray for hooligans.

It’s cold beach weather when we arrive, but in a nice way. The sky is ever changing from grey to blue to white to grey again, and we make our way along the coastline to the beach, opting for the direction of the lighthouse instead. The beach, known to you and me and tourism in general as Warnemunde, has two light houses, one either side of the opening to the cove. We sit ourselves by the closest one, green being obviously better than red (who wants to go fast when you’re a lighthouse?), and watch the waves. The sea is different here, different colour, feel and sound. Ever since talking to Staffan about people seeing without eyes and walking through the forests I’ve become more aware of sounds. This one is more violent, like the German language, but without the crashing waves. There’s a boats school group out on the water, they try to keep their cool as the big cruise ships are led into port, tossed around just a little. All around the lighthouse are stickers and graffiti, so I add a cupcake and a hand. Looking across the beach, the grey beast of a hotel mentioned in the Lonely Plant guide sticks out like a sore thumb. A concrete monstrosity that would surely block out the sun of the angle was right. The sand is dotted with what look like small blue two-person bus shelters. Apparently you can rent these out – the come with two seats, space for cooling bits underneath and even a sunroof to let you know when the sun is good enough to go out in and not too hot. Yes, Warnemunde, thy name be tourism.

The idea was to drink a lovely cocktail known as watermelon man in the local tourist villa bar thing, in memory of the red circle I successfully destroyed. But sadly this is not meant to be, according to the bar tender the drink in question does not exist. So it’s Mai Tai’s with a hell of a lot of imagination out in the said beer garden of faux Hawaiian beach tropical bar. Once again, Warnemunde, thy name be tourism.

We’re talking about Stupwitz, and how it keeps traveling and sticking to the larger cities through originally coming from Rostock, when who should show up but Casper and Claudia. Nadine finds it quite amazing that two of her best friends have hooked up with two people from the ship, Caroline with Andrais and Claudia with Casper. The ship heads for Copenhagen on Monday, leaving behind two broken hearts. Casper is originally from Denmark, can speak a multitude of languages and has a small obsession with 7inch singles and crazy eighties music. Talking to Andrais last night, he mentioned a friend of his that would always sing terrible 80s songs at the top of his voice when he greeted him, and had to finish the song, complete with instrumental solo or whatever in between, before moving on. Casper is said crazy friend.

After the Mai Tai's we start to head for home, Casper picking up a terribly tacky postcard on the way. Apparently every town he visits he sends one to his Grandmother - the message is brief, but the image is a tacky as possible.

We hope to meet up later –it’s a coin toss to whether it’s Casper or Andrais working tonight, so one girl will be without her man. Dinner at home is wicked eggplant glory with possibly too much chili for once. I got a bit excited and used the whole one when usually only half will be fine. But the first night Nadine mentioned a love of hot food, and when I said I could cook if she wants I put two and two together.

As we go Hannan arrives, having shared dinner and wine with her boyfriend’s grandmother. It’s very strange to eat with someone in the room that has decided not to join you. It makes me eat faster – Nadine doesn’t seem to be bothered by it but I find myself done with the meal fathoms ahead. I guess when I can’t speak the language I like the idea of the excuse I don’t like talking with my mouth full.

Casper and Claudia show up with cheap wine and bits – it seems Andrais drew the short straw. From his backpack Casper reveals just a small sample of his single collection – a good thirty EPs. Nadine already has Madonna on, but it took me a few seconds to work out who it was. The record player only has one speed – not the required one for the LP - so there is a certain chipmunk quality to it. Part of me likes it more, and it helps pick out which songs could be covered by a punk band.

Soon Casper has taken over the role of DJ, spinning all your favourite tracks you never knew existed. In no particular order

- The Skateboard Song
- Mili Vanilli
- Kraftwerk
- Safety Dance
- Cambodia
- Pogo Pogo
- Alvin Pretend

and more…

Talking with Claudia about traveling, I mention I’m still to find a good book to read, having finished the others over a month ago. She recommends Henry Miller, an apparent classic Tropic of Capricorn that I’m meant to have read by now some time in my life. I’m not sure I always like the idea of having a classic novel – that everyone should be able to relate on the topic of what makes a good book. Then again, I like being suggested books than finding one on my own, ultimately started based on the cover graphic. Claudia traveled for a month or so around Europe with a friend a few years ago, the Eurail pass one where things were decided very spontaneously. Her friend was hoping they’d have to rough it some nights and experience the real thing of sleeping on park benches and what not, having done similar a time before, but Claudia got lucky sleeping in trains and finding cheap places to live and eat.  As we talk I notice the air mattress failing, especially when one gets up to show a Youtube clip about zombies.

It’s around midnight and Casper and Claudia want to call it a night, as Casper and the ship will be leaving on Monday. The rest of us head out to the local, which is about five metres down the road where we find Andrais having snuck away from work early, much to Connie’s enjoyment. It’s a very low key pub with the locals including a champion boxer and a collection of wharf workers – the kind where if a fight did break out it would be between a local and tourist and someone may die. I am the only tourist in this bar. It turns out Andrais is from Switzerland and gives me a few tips on places to go, speaking highly of the forests and mountains. Switzerland is going to be wicked. Svenston, another said local who looks like he could break your neck but turns out to be a cuddly teddy bear of a man, begins to list all the festivals I should go to while I’m here. There is one in North Germany in June and he reckons he can get me a ticket. As excited as I am about the prospect, I hear him make the same promise to countless other people, so don’t follow it up. Festivals in Europe are mean to be insane though, so it would be worth seeing one at least. Hannan gets back from the phone with her boyfriend again, and we get talking about distance.

Home later and we’re eating some crazy soup made from asparagus (called Spargil i think in German) listening to cassettes till the sun comes up. I try to get a few hours on my rapidly deflating air mattress, thinking more about distance. I don’t think I want to do this for a whole year.
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