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I Walk the Lain(sitz) [River].

By Billy | May 21, 2011

The walk of shame.  It’s not hard to find.  They’re those people walking bleary eyed across college campuses across the world at an hour in the morning earlier than they’ve ever been up for class.  They’re the people wearing last nights clothes but not so fancily anymore.  They’re the people who slept where they partied and hadn’t planned on it.

I have yet to experience a walk of shame in Austria.  Last night/this morning was the closest I can say I’ve come, though.  Last night/this morning involved a stumbly, mumbly walk home at an early hour — earlier than I’ve ever been outside in Weitra.  The difference was that I hadn’t slept anywhere, and the sunrise walk through the beautiful Gabrielental valley along the Lainsitz river was completely planned into my evening/morning.  It was my job last night to send people into oblivion by handing them uncountable alcoholic beverages.  Last night I was a bar tender.

Bar tending is an incredibly fun thing to do — at least, it was one time.  I don’t know if I would enjoy it hundreds of times a year, but just once is quite lovely.  At the cost of my voice, any semblance of smelling nice (it takes a while for cigarette smoke to wash out of dreadlocks… send packages of baking soda, fast!), and an entire night of sleep, I earned €16,31, one contraceptive, a t-shirt and church-key with the local radio station’s symbol on it, a few new potential friends, and a whole mess of Austrian vocabulary.  People in this part of the world actually pride themselves, by the way, on speaking incomprehensibly.  Also, I learned that German has no adverbs.  Weird.

The hardest part of the evening was recognizing drinks I’d never heard of.  A rum and coke, for example, is called her “ein Bacardi cola,” which is simple enough, but offers insight into why it’s so difficult to learn a language — even if you know the vocabulary.  I noticed that those words turned into one huge word, and I couldn’t figure out immediately what a bakardkol was.  It was interesting also to note when the words became conceptualized; soon certain words the customers spoke to me turned into ideas more than words.  When I heard certain sounds, I immediately thought of the drink, rather than the components.  One drink was a Cuban rum mixed with some weird Orange Juice.  It was called a Cappy-somethingorother.  All I know is when I heard those words I never heard before, I put those two things I’d never heard of before together.  It was fastinating to watch as sounds began to mean something in my mind totally independent of their actual meaning.  Perhaps it was a little like Archetypal thinking.  I think this sort of thing was going on.

Anyway.  I don’t quite think I can explain why, where, or what I was doing last night.  It’s not because of the a-a-a-a-a-a-alcohol, it’s because I don’t understand things here so good.  I gathered that I was at the firestation, I gathered that a radiostation was DJing, and I gathered that people give better tips when they enjoy watching you struggle to speak their language than the ones who frighten you and make you feel as though they may strike you out of frustration. Yeah, I’m thinking of you, you twat.  I volunteered for a friend I met at a dancing class to get paid to drink and have a good time, really.  That’s what happened last night.

Hum. Well there’s some about my day.  In other news, Mountain Justice Summer Camp is officially starting and I am missing my extended family right now.  I talk about the mountains in America most of all.  This exact week in Kentucky was one of the big reasons I wanted to stay in the States until June.  Things didn’t happen that way, so that’s ok.

Uh.  Yeah, I guess now I’m going to click the ‘Publish’ button and find my new Facebook friends.

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