Milkshake, bitte!

So early last year I traveled to Germany several times for work.

The thing about German food is, it’s pretty terrible and outrageously heavy and salty. “Vegetarian” options will contain fish, porkfat, or both.

Those of us who travel there often say that Germany is a land of “white people and brown food.” Everything is fried. While I’m sure there are people that appreciate food that heavy, it is not a cuisine with which to nourish oneself while recovering from jetlag.

After a few long days of Gnocci (Frankfurt has a lot of Italian restaurants), “winter noodles” (like Gnocci, but bigger), and Kassebretzel (translates to “cheese-pretzel,” but more closely resembles a Cinnabon, only made of cheese), I was feeling very burnt out and the constant stress was causing me to cry out for something, anything familiar.

I couldn’t have a Coke or a Pepsi because (a)The EU uses real sugar instead of High Fructose Corn Syrup, which alters the taste and (b) Germans don’t seem to believe in ice. I couldn’t have a beer because, well, German beer looks and tastes like piss. I couldn’t order a pizza because delivery service doesn’t exist and even if it did, my command of the language at that time did not allow me to give directions to my hotel room.

So I did the next best thing.

I went to McDonald’s.

I don’t normally go to McDonald’s, but in my darkest hour the Golden Arches was my beacon of home.

After studying the menu board and seeing familiar items (Eine “Grosse Mac,” for example), I quickly rehearsed my selection and walked up to the counter.

“Ich möchte (I would like) ein grosse pom frit (a large fries) und eine Schokoladenmilch (chocolate milkshake)”.

The cashier replied,

“Ich bedauere, doch die Maschine ist broken.”

At first I did not understand her, but then I realized that some things are universal.

No matter where you go, the shake machine at McDonald’s is always broken.

A little bit of home, right there in Frankfurt.

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~ by jamiesnydertv on May 28, 2009.

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