Frankfurt was hot. Damn hot. So hot and muggy that sleep wasn’t easy. The snoozes I’d had on various coaches probably didn’t help either.
I woke around 9-ish as Hans had told me his flight from Darfur was landing at 7:30. I’d checked the buses from the airport and that would mean he’d get here at 9:30. Time for some breakfast before he got to the hostel. As I was spooning cereal into a bowl, I heard a familar voice call out “What the hell are you doing here?”
Hans’ flight landed at 6:30 – he’d given me the times based in Darfur – so he’d caught an earlier bus and already walked into town, realised that most people were still asleep and come back to the hostel. There’s not a whole lot to do in Frankfurt, so he was pretty glad to have someone to hang out with while he tried to stay awake after the long flight.
We chilled for a while and caught up before walking into town for the briefest of looks around. My sunglasses broke but as luck would have it, I was right by a street-seller selling cheapies at â‚¬4 a pop. Big, tight-fitting, passed the head-bang test and mirrored. Spot on. Hans picked out a film to watch later, we grabbed some food from one of the market stalls put out for the day (sausage and fried potato – really good and only â‚¬3) and walked back to the hostel.
There was a free football game being organised that afternoon and people were just gearing up to head off for it. I’d been pretty ill the last couple of days (nothing too bad, but let’s just say I was very careful as regards passing wind… as it wasn’t always wind), but felt up to a bit of exercise and counted myself in. Hans went off for a lie down while the staff organised drinking water and underground tickets for us (all paid for!).
I got chatting to a few people on the walk and during the game. As you’d expect from a cheap hostel near a major transport hub, the mix was quite impressive: Mexican, Australian, Kiwi, Brit, American, Canadian, German, Italian… The game was good, but hard work in the baking heat and humidity. After an hour or so, a bunch of locals asked if they could join in and we ended up with something approaching 15-a-side, though this varied as people dropped out periodically to top up on water.
One of the hostel staff video’d things occasionally and it should pop up on YouTube at some point. At time of writing, it’s not there yet, though the user account to check out is HostelFrankfurt.
Update: here ’tis…
When we got back, a cold crate of beer was placed on a table for the footballers – again, all free! There was enough for two bottles each and they were welcomed, believe me. Hans resurfaced and hadn’t gone to see a film after all. He’d misread the timetable and the film he wanted to catch wasn’t showing on a Tuesday. Instead, we walked out and picked up dinner from a Turkish take-out nearby. There are lots of these – Turkey seems to send all it’s emigrants to Frankfurt! Good for us as the food’s pretty cheap and filling.
The rest of the evening was spent chatting to a load of other residents, and a short wander round the city at night and through the red light district (always a laugh). Hans’ bus was booked for 5:30am so he went to bed and I stayed up with an American and two Aussies chewing the cud and drinking Wild Turkey and Coke.
My sleep pattern was obviously skewed badly as I was still chatting away when Hans woke up for his bus! I eventually had “breakfast” at 06:00 and went to bed. Then struggled to sleep in the heat.