Wednesday, June 14, 2006

June 13, 2006

I woke up extra early (need an alarm clock) and thought of doing a few things (Porsche museum, art gallery for the Monet exhibit) but hit the schlossplatz and knew it was a day of flaneurie. They love a self-service pastry shop here (think Chinatown/Bread Story but with pastries, donuts and paninis) so I grabbed a pastry and wondered the streets. A fruit, vegetable and flower market was starting and the produce was amazing. Beautiful white asparagus, mushrooms of all kinds, perfumed roses. I gorged myelf on a huge punnet of the most fragrant, deliciously warm strawberries, and while I wanted to try the local spetzl - potato dumplnigs that look like worms which I love - I was enchanted by a deli on the main square, one which specialised in all kinds of wurst, the other two doors up with cheese. I bought a slice of incredible baked salmon and spinach quiche, a slice of beef wurst, and a salad of deliciously gelatinous shaved beef wurst with pickles, and had a picnic in the park. On such a warm, blue sky day, it was pure delight.

All morning the schlossplatz was gathering with red and white, and red, blue and white. By noon the streets were buzzing with team chants, horns, flags waved and beer glasses chinking. The atmosphere was unlike anything I could imagine and it was so much fun. Camera crews filled the scene, desperate fans held signs up begging for tickets (one offered 2000E for a game) and one of the biggest French fans who Id seen the night before at the Italy-Ghana game handed me a rose, because 'la rose dans la vie, c'est toi'.

When I walked out of the hostel decked in my French tshirt, 98 World Cup scarf, and my newest purchases, a huge flag and a whistle, I felt like the triumphant Hitler walking towards the Eiffel Tower.

The feeling of being there is indescribable, and I cant put it into words. Except for these: when I walked into the stadium and saw my seats, and just how good they were, my smile said it all. I was in the French section, in the corner, row 24, and saw it all. I never imagined such great seats. (Sidenote: the pork sandwich I had at the food stands was one of the most delicious things Ive ever eaten, the pork steak barbecued to perfection). Ricky Martin blasted through the speakers of a beautiful stadium, which was sold out with 52,000 fans. I sang that beautiful anthem at the top of my lungs and cheered Zizou, Henry, Ribery, Barthez. I was consciously aware throughout the whole time that I was fulfiling a dream, and what an electric feeling that is. Despite the 0-0 draw, it was a great game, Switzerland played very well, France needed to be faster and Zidane and Henry dominated. Not a heave of disappointment that no goals were scored. Id seen France play in the World Cup.


Blogger Miss Natalie said...

Sounds absolutly fantastic!

5:26 pm  
Blogger Deep Kick Girl said...

So happy for you, beautiful girl. You've had an amazing experience which will be in your heart forever. I am so very proud of you.

5:46 pm  
Blogger Jo said...


11:25 pm  
Blogger Karen said...

This choked me up. What an amazing trip you are on, giving yourself.

11:49 pm  
Blogger eurobrat said...

Ay carumba- that sounds like a high! Looking forward to hearing about your next stop.

1:02 am  
Blogger TessaJ said...

Oh, honey. I'm so thrilled for you. What a fantastic, fantastic, fantastic day!

5:37 am  
Blogger la chipie said...

nothing to do with anything (except that by the way I love the travel blog ) but Paul & Joe 's collection for Target is unvailed and I remembered a previous post , so I'm sharing the wealth
(I have not used it myself, but Target is supposedly very good for shipping worlwide)

7:30 am  
Blogger Jules said...

Fantastic. It sounds amazing.

And I love all the descriptions of the food you are eating too!

3:05 pm  

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