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I woke up on the fourth day to disappointment: my knees were so sore, I couldn’t get out of bed, never mind getting down the stairs! My right knee started to feel a bit weird the previous day, but it wasn’t that bad, so I kept on cycling. After breakfast, I felt a bit better though, so decided to chance it – after all, the day’s cycling would start with a downhill stretch. Outside, it was raining – and I surely wasn’t up for 80km+ in the rain! By the time I got to the middle of the city, my knees were killing me. I adjusted the saddle of the bicycle – thinking that might have been the problem – but it still didn’t help much. Perhaps it was the saddle’s height’s fault – who knows? The damage was done. So I decided to take a train instead.

I thought about it, of course, for quite a while. Wouldn’t this make me feel like a failure? Then again, I was here to enjoy the trip – and I certainly wasn’t enjoying it at the time. So I decided on a comprise – visit the Oktoberfest in Munich instead! Yes, if I bought a Landesticket for Bavaria, I could go anywhere I like! So I did. (Ulm is still in Baden-Württemburg, but just across the Danube, in Neu-Ulm, I could buy a Bavaria Landesticket for 20 EUR, plus 4.50 EUR for the bicycle.)

So off to Munich I went. The Oktoberfest is probably Germany’s biggest cultural festival – at least, most foreigners would think so. And by golly, it sure was interesting with all the Germans dressed in traditional (Bavarian) clothing. But for the most part, it was just a big fair:

The beer tents, of course, were pretty interesting, but alas! I didn’t drink any beer, it was simply too weird a thing to do on my own. Rather, on advice of a friend, I visited other sights in Munich. Here’s a few random samples:

It was family day at the Oktoberfest, so a lot of bargains were to be got. Although I should have bought one of these, out of sheer interest:

I bought a whole chicken instead, out of monetary considerations. A bargain’s a bargain! The stall offered chickens at half price. No, correction: they offered a “buy one half, get the other half free” special. I know this, because they individually wrapped both halves. For lack of other seating possibilities, I made myself comfy on the grass, digging into one half of the chicken (was it the same chicken? or two right halves, perhaps?) with gusto. Perhaps with a maniacal glint in my eye, too – most people (be it Germans or foreigners) walked a wide circle around this gruesome sight. Because I couldn’t start the second half of the (other?) chicken, I was so full, I started looking around for someone to give the chicken too. And of course, I was pretty much the shabbiest-looking person around. Finally, with much reservation and mixed feelings, I ditched the other half chicken in a garbage bin. What else could I do?

I returned to Augsburg (which I did at least see before leaving for Munich, since I first stashed my bicycle at the youth hostel) to my single apartment (it was the only single apartment that I booked for the whole trip). I could at least shower and read a bit; quite happy at how the day turned out, after all.


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