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Here’s an excellent recreation of Sunday’s game using that childhood favourite…Lego. It comes from the website Legofussball.eu where you can see recreations of loads of different World Cup, Champions League and Bundesliga matches. Possibly my favourite scene is their recreation of the American goal in the opening match against England. Somehow, even the lego figure manages to give off the utter sense of disbelief and despair that Robert Green must have been feeling as the ball squirmed into the net.
Video: Germany 4 England 1:
(Here is the diary of Andreas’s last five days in South Africa, from the response to the tight 1-0 victory over Ghana to the joy of stuffing England 4-1…)
Thursday 24th June
1 am and back in the hotel…wrecked body and soul dead…a match that got me physically exhausted as if I played myself. Tense, tight and nervous…on and off the pitch. A team that is visibly insecure, immature. Beautiful strike from otherwise disastrous Oezil. Brilliant atmosphere, sold out crowd, and the most colourful crowd of Germany supporters I have ever seen. There seemed to be more Asians and Africans in BlackRedGold than Germans. My God, what a relief. Now England. Bring them on. Bring them on. Watching Italy hopefully being eliminated tomorrow at Ellis Park – Sorry Daniele – and then off to Blomfontein…small Stadium, small city…400 km from here, and it will be a cool ride..
Friday 25th June
A Love Letter to Emma and Daniele
When I walked over to Ellis Park today for the game of Italy I, of course, hoped that at the end of the day could celebrate an early exit of the Italian team from the world Cup, like anyone who loves this beautiful game. Why? Because of Inzaghi, even if he is not here, because of the arrogance this team shows on the pitch, because they got away too often with mediocre play, because they betrayed a brave Australian team of their greatest moment with a dive 4 years ago, because they were so arrogant to send this aging, boring and uninspired team to the Cup, because, well, we are Italy. But now, at night, back in the hotel, walking back, man, thousands of sad Italian fans. Sad? An archetypical type of sadness. Without a doubt no culture on this planet celebrates sadness as beautifully as the Italians do. Single tears…shock and agony…A drama worthy of the big screen. And, oh boy, well dressed. Sad and elegant. A spectacle in itself.
As you might have understood by now, I am writing this to let you know that I share your grief, your pain and your desperation. I am Italian tonight. And seeing you guys being last in a group with New Zealand, Paraguay and Slowakia does not make me laugh at all. Really not.
Oh, and I miss you both. It would have been nice to have you here tonight…
P.S. Now you can finally get your Germany flags out of the closet.
Saturday 26th June
In Bloemfontein, and there seem to be more English and Germans then actual inhabitants. The match is tomorrow and it feels BIG. The local media is going a bit nuts, and it’s a bit embarrassing, too. Examples? One national paper had the front page reading “Germany and England ready for war.” Bloody idiots. Another one had before the Ghana game the header “Ghana prepares for German Blitzkrieg” and after, under a picture of Oezil (!!!) ”Deutschland ueber alles”. Today the Star wrote ”We are ready for Ze English”…
A bit gross, that a countries media, that is complaining since weeks about the stereotypes and prejudice they see in foreign reports about South Africa is producing crap like that. Anyhow, we might have to live with this for the century. If we win it’s “Germany looking for freedom”, I am sure..
Of course, for us Germans, being the theatre loving people we are, it is top notch entertainment to sit back in the audience, and watch the drama of a once glorious nation to put all their hopes in catching a glimpse of that lost splendour into the hands of 11, intellectually- limited individuals – is there anyone actually taking Terry REALLY seriously? – every 2 years, only to see it failing again and again with an astonishing predictability, and then defeat being blown into biblical proportions by a hysteric media. That’s Greek stuff, isn’t it? Or better, it was the first 3, 4 times…Now it’s more like Monty Python..
And actually: the truth is, we love each other. Brothers, kind of. They have, what we want – a glorious past- and we have what they desire – a functioning society. Besides that, brothers. The nasty, raucous one, always a bit too loud and drinking too much, but clearly more fun, and the other one better in school, but with a stick up his ass…
Will we win? No idea. Whatever will happen, it will be highly entertaining, and, whoever will win, Argentina will be waiting, very likely, and that was that.
I am excited. Totally. The good way. It will be grand.
Sunday 27th June
Germany 4 (Klose, Podolski, Müller ) England 1 (Upson)
Monday 28th June
Hermanus, after a 1,100 km ride from Bloemfontein.
3 Lions – 4 Goals…Nearly half of the time on the bike today I spent singing “joyful, victorious”. It was a beautiful day. A justification for the whole trip. The sun was out, the atmosphere thrilling but peaceful, the game: unforgettable. I had endorphin rushes the whole 90 minutes, was dancing on the press tribunes after, gave a live interview to the Austrian radio, was shot by South African TV when ecstatically singing the anthem. It was beyond belief.
Seeing the 2 counterattacks up close, and subconsciously knowing what is happening, and see it executed, with surgical precision…priceless. Despite the Lampard shot, which I am very, very sad about that it was denied, there was a class between the teams, and here, you might be bored by now, especially psychologically. A kind of naive youthfulness, no “cleverness”, but a lot of passion, against a team dominated by vague sense of fear. Simply put, I don’t think it has ever been more joyful to be a German football supporter then in the last 2 days.
I know I should not say that, but I am quite sure we will go out against Argentina. I am afraid to see Mertesacker against Tevez, and I assume Mister Khedira will find his limits too against little Leo. Anyhow, no one can take that day away from me. Just a game, but I have been smiling for the past 24 hours.
For all of you who are interested in the current standings in the Circus Tipping Competition – after the Argentina game but before the Dutch take to the field – the leading positions are as follows:
1. Sion (49 points)
2. Jim (47 points)
3. Sophie (42 points)
4=. Mathias, Digel and Felix (all 41 points)
7= Aditi and Maren (40 points)
9. Nisha (39 points)
So the Brits are leading the field, although there are still plenty of games to be played and points to be won, and things can change dramatically. Not that long ago Sion was holding steady in midfield, but 5 correct tips in the last 8 games has seen him shoot to the front…
By the way, if anyone is interested in joining us to watch some of the action at The Circus, the hotel courtyard is now open for games in our World Cup Garden…open-air viewing all the way to the final. Of course, all games are also being shown in the hostel.
A little over a week ago one of the Circus team got married. Indeed, for Konny and his lovely bride Cami it was their 3rd wedding…and Jared went along to the Dorfkirche Blankenfelde to celebrate with them…
A few of us ventured out to see be part of this very special day. Toga and I made our plans on Friday of where to meet and I put Reiseleiter Lorenz in charge of the directions. We both met in front of the Burger King on Saturday morning, and both dressed to impress in our suits. Toga had his google directions and off we went on a two hour and fourty five minute journey to the bowels of Pankow.
I thought we would just jump on a S-Bahn and then need to catch a bus but little did I know that we were jumping on the U-6 to the very end Alt-Tegel. It all started off pretty calm but the further we got on the U-6 line the more Toga and I were highly over dressed compared to the locals going about their normal Saturday business.
We arrived at Alt-Tegel and I was dying for a beer but Toga told me not before a wedding. I held out and had a look around at a part of the city that I had never really seen and admired that this was still Berlin and an undiscovered part of the city. We jumped on the bus 205 – a nice double decker – and made ourselves comfortable since we had a 35 minute ride through the city. Toga was so convinced that we would be on the public transport for so long that we would leave the zone B so we both bought ABC tickets. On the way home we found out that we never left zone B.
The bus got away from busy city and ended up on extremely narrow streets most of which were still paved of stone. There were actually little houses and again was a real eye opener to a different part of Berlin. Toga and I kept looking at each other thinking we felt sorry for the people that had to make this commute everyday.
We neared our stop Toga hit the stop button but being in foreign land we noticed the next stop was one beyond where we were to meet our connecting bus.
Toga and I hopped off cursing the bus driver since it was only one bus stop but the distance between the two stops was about 3ks. Toga rolled a ciggy but had no time to smoke it since the next bus back was arriving quick. We both ran out little hearts off and made it back to the stop we were originally intended to get off at.
Of course we had a twenty minute wait so we watited hoping that someone in the middle of a two way road in the middle of no where would recognize that two guys dressed in suits were not waiting to take a bus ride but that we desperately needed to get to the church for a wedding.
The bus arrived we jumped on with only minutes to spare till the wedding was about to start. We saw Julia and were very happy to see someone that we knew and she also had her own story about her journey. This would not be the last one either.
We made it to the church a little nervours that we would not know where it was but there was a large gang of other people dressed up and in suits so we knew we were in the right place.
Konny came running out to greet us and ushered everyone into the church. I think he wanted to get the show on the road.
We entered a small very intimate church the organ started kicking some toons and then Konny and Cami came down the isle. We sang some songs listened to a very nice story from the priest about how Konny and Cami met and the rest I have no idea. I know that Steffi from the café snuck in with Matthew. They also encountered some problems with the public transportation.
They did the I dos and I think Cami also wanted to get the party because she I doed before the priest was even finished.
That being done we left the church went outside for some group photos (see photo attached) greeted the newly weds and headed up the road for a bit of sekt, cofffe and cake, beer and dinner.
Walking just 100 meters from the church to Konnys family house we saw the famous restaurant the Blue Duck. Steffi had seen this place on TV. It was one of those shows where a chef comes in and tells them what they need to do to improve the place. The only one that saw the inside was Steffi because there was some sort of goat farm across the road where to goats seemed to be penned in a fence. I personally thought this was some sort of breeding enhancer but everyone insured me this was animal cruelty. After Steffi did her deed of letting the restaurant know people came frantically running out to save the goats.
Once we finally got to Konny’s house we drank some sekt, everyone else had coffee and cake, The place where Konny grew up was an amazing place. He must have had great time as a kid. A huge front lawn to play in and a great back yard with a nice area for grilling, a covered kind of open barn for having partys and I think they might even have had a sauna. What a great place to grow up and have parties at while the parents are away. I drank more sekt, got the Circus crew another bottle of sekt and we had a few glasses more in the sun. We had some good laughs, well Steffi had a lot because she is a cheap drunk and after two sips she couldn’t stop laughing or talking the rest of the day.
There was a little show hosted by Lars with Konny and Cami’s friends doing little skits. After that the keg had been popped we drank some beer and had some dinner. By this time the Circus crew was a bit tipsy, full from dinner and was dreading the long way home. We said our goo byes despite everyone wanting us to stay because they assured us that the real party was going to start.
We had to leave walked by the petting zoo to make sure Steffis goats were ok and jumped on the bus. The bus driver was very nice and complemented us on our attire. We decided to jump off and wait for the tram 1. There were a few more complications but in the end we all made it home in one piece.
It was a great day full of traveling to new places, meeting new people, good laughs, and great food, and I would like to thank Konny and Cami for having me. I wish you all the best of luck in the future.
Where to get a spit-roasted chicken is not quite as hotly contested as where is the best kebab in town title although there are a few contenders. The Hühnerhaus is Kreuzberg institution and set at the entrance to Görlitzer Park which is one of the liveliest parks in Berlin.
The queues are legendary but that is because it is best in grilled chicken in Berlin. The hot sauce is a must, not too hot…. Just right…. The Hühnerhaus caters for all, young, old, rich and poor. Last summer the Police tried to stamp down on the guys selling “The Herb” in the park. The undercover police know of course who is selling the drugs and the drug dealers know who the undercover cops are and they spent days chasing each other through the bushes of the park. But when it came to hunger to the drug dealers and the police patiently queued up and ate they chicken next to each other. Ahhhh Harmony http://www.hühnerhaus.com/ . The easiest way to get there from the Circus is to take the U8 to Kottbusser Tor and then the U1 to Görlitzer Park.
If you see a piece of graphic design in the Circus Hostel or Hotel that you particularly like, then there is a good chance that it was Julia Stone who did it. Having been chained to her computer making icons, posters, maps, magazines and much more for the past couple of months, we finally set her free and she headed south to a little island in the very corner of Berlin…here’s her report and some photos…
A few weeks ago I saw Olafur Eliasson’s very impressive exhibition “Innen Stadt Aussen” in Martin Gropius Bau and his exhibition inspired me to visit Pfaueninsel (“Peacock Island”), where there is also a temporary art installation by him (The Blind Pavilion). His installation there was rather disappointing compared to his other works in the museum exhibition, but Pfaueninsel turned out to be a great half-day trip.
Already when getting out of the S-Bahn at Wannsee the air smells so much fresher and cleaner, and everything is green! From Wannsee an hourly bus (number 218) takes you to the pier, where a small ferry takes you over to the island. On the island no cars, bicycles, pets or even smoking are allowed. The only way to get around is on foot, and one round around the island takes about 1.5 hours.
Pfaueninsel has a long history and was a favorite of prussian kings and queens. It is a world cultural heritage site, bird sanctuary and nature reserve. There is a small palace (we didn’t go inside) and other historical buildings scattered over the island – an dairy building, an old boathouse, a beautiful fountain, a hunter’s blind, a peacock breeding house, and lots of fields, forest with magnificent tree formations and greenery. The nicest bonus was that we were practically alone there to enjoy the greenery and scenery along with a few farm animals (even two pairs of asian water buffalo!) and the spooky cries of the peacocks.
If you want to know where in Berlin the Pfaueninsel is…here’s a map.
More pics – below: The Eliasson Pavilion / The Jagdschirm / A Lovely Horse
I felt seriously inspired by the english bloke, that marched into the locker room of the glorious three lions to tell them what everyone in the world knows, and so i walked into a FIFA dinner to chat the World Cup through…You see Mister Platini running, Andreas Moeller holding a speech – it was funny – and Seeler being sweet…A very patient guy…
I prepared a longer monologue, but actually the big heads did not seem to be very interested…