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Brethren Road Trips The travel logs of our members. Q- joints, restaurants, entertainment, reviews while we travel around the 50 states. Also, Post here for a shout out to members to meet up with while on the road.


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Unread 07-06-2006, 09:50 PM   #1
BrooklynQ
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Wild Boar Barbecue for Mr. & Mrs. Bush


Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: She thinks he's funny: German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President George W. Bush


When George W. Bush comes to Germany next week, he'll get to enjoy, among other things, a wild boar barbecue. He may, in fact, end up leaving the country thinking Germany isn't so different from Texas, after all.


Having George W. Bush come over for a visit is an incredibly stressful affair for any foreign government official.

First of all, there's the issue of the president's tough cowboy talk which usually makes most foreigners -- even the occasionally overeducated head of state -- rather insecure about their knowledge of English.

When George Dubya pronounces "America," for example, it usually comes out as "Amur-cah" or "Mur-cah." That's a little strange for somebody who grew up in Midland, Texas, but left it at the age of fifteen to follow the typical path of a member of the lucky sperm club: prep school at Andover, college at Yale and graduate school at Harvard. George W. proudly uses his theatrical Texan twang -- not shared by his parents or siblings -- to declare his chosen identity. It is like his own pair of stylish cowboy boots that nobody will ever be able to rob him of.

Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: Not all Germans are big fans of the US president
Then, there is the ever-embarrassing issue of the tireless, Bush-whacking protestors. Luckily for the stressed-out hosts, the police usually sequester the demonstrators as far away from the US president as possible: See-no-evil, hear-no-evil is the best way to avoid embarrassment while playing the usual round of diplomatic charades and stressing improved bilateral relations. As a consequence, Mr. Bush probably thinks that European cities are kind of lonely. Hey, Condi, where did all the people go?

Angie and George

Bildunterschrift: Stralsund is known for its architecture
On July 13 and 14, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will be the overstressed host trying to keep her composure when she welcomes George W. and First Lady Laura Bush at her constituency Stralsund -- a beautiful historic sea town of 60,000 in the north-eastern part of the German state of Mecklenburg - Western Pomerania.

During all the handshaking, the smiling and the joking that usually goes on in front of the journalists when the American president is around, members of the association "Not Welcome, Mr. President" will be staging their protest on the outskirts of Stralsund. The downtown historic district, where Bush will be hanging out, has been declared a no-protest zone.

"In our talks with the police and the city, we will try to make sure we get as close as possible, both in terms of the location and the time, to the events, " said Monty Schädel, one of the protest organizers.

Ladies first

Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: Laura Bush will practically have nothing to do
According to officials in Berlin, a small special "Damenprogramm" (program for ladies) has been planned for Laura Bush, but no details are available yet. Which is quite understandable: Berlin officials in charge of the protocol are probably banging their heads against the walls of the chancellery right now. "Where, oh where, are we going to send her off?," they ask themselves.

The town will be, after all, completely paralyzed during the visit. Municipal agencies and offices will be closed. No shops will be open. Entering the town's historic central district will be possible only through one of two check points. The library, the museum, the adult education center and the music school will also close their doors. Stralsunders who live in the historic district will not be allowed to open their windows or leave their apartments from 9:30 am until 16 minutes after the end of the visit.

Laura Bush may end up having no choice but to sit around and twiddle her thumbs while George W. and Angela Merkel hold their talks.

Hunting for the president

Despite the planned protests, some Stralsunders are actually looking forward to the presidential visit. Stralsund's Hotel Royal, for example, is throwing an American barbecue party the night before Bush's arrival with country music and cowboy dancers.

"The visit of the most powerful politician is a huge boost for the image of Stralsund," said hotel manager Sebastian Tacke. "That has to be celebrated accordingly."

Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: Please, don't shoot!
Merkel and the Bushes will themselves attend a different barbecue, one hosted by Olaf Micheel, an innkeeper from neighboring Trinwillershagen. In a bow to the manly, alpha-animal Texan, Micheel is planning to roast a wild boar that he has shot himself. The only problem is that he hasn't found one yet. But he's out there with a gun, looking. A local radio station is dutifully following the hunt for the president's boar.

"We could never pay for this kind of advertising," said Micheel. "This is a one-in-a-lifetime opportunity."

Micheel is convinced that the American president will feel at home in his tiny village between Stralsund and Rostock.

"It's like being on a ranch here," Micheel said.

Tastes like fish

Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: There's something really fishy about traditional German recipes
The local fishmonger Henry Rasmus will present the American president with a box of Bismarck herring -- the only fish in the world officially allowed to carry the noble name of Germany's greatest 19th century statesman. Rasmus bought the rights to the original recipe for marinated herring from the descendants of Johann Wiechmann, who served it first in 1871 to the mighty Otto von Bismarck, the Iron Chancellor.

When all is said and done, Angela Merkel will probably breathe a sigh of relief to see George Dubya's back. Though she may get a slight headache arguing with the local government of Mecklenburg - Western Pomerania about who's going to foot the 12 million euro ($14.3 million) bill to cover the expenses of the US president's visit.

Which is, if you think about it, quite pricey for two days of pure stress and a wild boar barbecue.


Toma Tasovac
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Unread 07-07-2006, 09:47 AM   #2
Arlin_MacRae
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I can proudly say I have had wild boar in Germany many times, washed down with some tasty bier...yum. It didn't suck...!
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Unread 07-08-2006, 11:25 AM   #3
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Wild pig is some good eatin'! Makes real good sausage too.
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