Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Carnival in Cologne

Thursday morning I got up at 8am, to be at Bob's Youth Hostel by 9am, we ended up leaving at around 20 to 10, and while Mika (An Australian girl coming with us to Cologne) ran back to get her jacket, we decided it would be better if George got the train to the airport instead of us driving there and then to Cologne as it was likely that he wouldn't make it. I payed for his ticket (he'd bought me drinks on a previous night) and we said our goodbyes. Tom, Dam, Mika and I got the tram to the Park and Ride, paid the dude behind the counter and then CRAMMED into the car....

Mika, from Sydney
Between 2 and 3 hours later we arrived at Anna's house. Mika called 1 million and 1 people to try and take her to Munich the next day but failed, so Anna helped her find the cheapest train possible. In the mean time, I showered and got my Devil-Angel gear on. Dan borrowed a Monk outfit from Anna, Tom decided to wear his Monkey Onesie and Mika though she'd go in her PJ's. We split, so that they could set up their tent, and vowed to find each other again by using Tom's walkie talkies. Safe to say that plan failed as soon as the drinking began. Anna and I went into town, met some of her friends, including Kadn from Camp, dressed as a penguin, and then headed back to a pub near where Anna lives. The place was so packed, and everyone was in costumes, it was real surreal. You had 60 year old pirates mixing with 18 year old flowers.

In the end Anna and I ended up going clubbing for a couple of hours before heading home. Unfortunately we  got the train in the wrong direction and ended up in the middle of no where at 2 in the morning. We hung out with a Banana and a Cowboy for a bit before realising there wouldn't be a train, so Anna called her boyfriend to come and rescue us. While we waited, some cousin Princes approached us, which was funny, but overall it was just absolutely freezing!

The Fairy and the Devil
Friday morning, Tom and Dan came over again to return the Monk costume, stuff their faces, tell tales of the previous night, to get the Walkie Talkie back and then to take me to Cologne Main Train Station to meet my Cousin, Marlene. They drove us to Marlene's hotel and then we parted ways (they're off through Germany a bit and then to Prague eventually).

When we got into Marlene's hotel room, we were greeted by several Austrian guys at the window opposite, facing our window, who'd clearly already had a few, and thought it was brilliant that they could see us through their hotel window. After ages of trying to get the window open (it was jammed), we got ready and then met some of the guys down in the lobby. We went for a walk to get food and ended up eating posh pizza with them. (They were all dressed as Pilots, I was a Hippie and Marlene had a massive bow on her head.)

Having gotten to know them reasonably well over dinner, we decided to head out together as a group to the Clubbing Region of Cologne City. I think we went to about 7 different clubs throughout the night before heading back to the hotel. Friday night was a lot of fun and it was great to meet Marlene so spontaneously. If all goes to plan, she'll be popping up again some time later in my blogs in some other unknown place!

Emanuel from Austria

Saturday morning started around 9 am, Marlene and I walked through the town until we figured out how to get to the Main Train Station again. (There was a parade on even at this time and it was funny to figure out who had just woken up and who was going home!). At the station we got McDonalds for breakfast and then ate a Berliner (you're supposed to have one of these at Carnival, they are like donuts filled with jam but 1 out of every 10 is filled with mustard - it's the gamble of Carnival.)

Marlene and I parted ways, she met with her boyfriend and went back home and I got the train to Anna's - just in time to get changed, hug Rachael and Colm who had arrived the previous night, and then head out all together in a big group with Rachael, Colm, Anna, Victoria, Rebecca, Kevin and Kadn to the local parade in Porz-Wahn. Basically the day consisted of standing in a large crowd of dressed up people getting sweets (and teddies and full blown chocolate bars) thrown at your head (ouch) from large tractors driven by even more dressed up people.

Colm as Harry Potter the Priest, Rachael as Where's Wally,
Victoria as a bird, Kevin as a Leprechaun and me as a Leopard

Sophia from IC11

Colm, Rachael and Kevin
After the parade, we all went to Vicky's house (except Anna and Kadn who went to a private birthday party) and ate pasta with her parents. Rachael and I went back to Anna's and the rest went clubbing.

Sunday morning was a slow one, we stuffed our faces with breakfast, slowly got ready and then went to the Coffee Shop - Brando at a nearby town.
(While waiting in the cold for the train:
Rachael realised she had too much money so practically bought the whole selection of cakes and muffins available for us, so we stuffed ourselves full even more! I had a Snickers Latte, and it was just as good as last time.

Thank you Rachael Mole (look see, I mentioned you!)

We went back to Anna's, got ready for the night, this time I was Luna Lovegood, Colm was Harry Potter, Anna was a fairy again and Rachael was an Army Chick. We went to a 16+ club because Rachael and Rebecca are still 17 and it was one of the most expensive and worst clubs I've ever been to. Still some how managed to sort of have a laugh, mainly at the very poor DJ and at the clearly not even 16 years of age audience. Some slightly famous guy came and performed some Carnival songs at one stage, which I guess was fun, but I sure am glad that I am now over 18! We went home earlier than intended and fell asleep. Colm and Rachael had to leave the house by 8 am on Monday morning.

Rebecca, Rachael, Kevin, Vicki, Colm, Anna, Kadn and me.

Anna and I ended up watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 and then Part 2, before I hurriedly packed and left for the Main Train Station. My train was 30 minutes late, which meant that I had missed my first change over, which meant at the second station I had to wait for 1 hour in the cold, which then led to me having missed the last tram once I got to Amsterdam 4 hours later, which led to me walking home, which led to me taking off my shoes because they hurt so much, which led to me waking up with 4 HUGE blisters on the bottom of my feet - yum.

But hey, overall, it was SUCH an epic weekend and it was so so awesome to see everyone again, especially as I think it'll be a longer time this time before that happens again... So yes. Off to Italy on Friday, my first workaway experience, hopefully when I get back I'll be able to ride a horse again. Maybe I'll even know a phrase or two in Italian! Wish me luck. And I'll try and keep your posted as to what exactly I am doing.

Lots of love and wishing you safe journeys,

Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds

Mine and Colm's hands, Rebecca's face.

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