It's a three-day holiday weekend, and I am traveling with WiseKid and WiseKidGirlfriend to meet WiseMan in the city where he grew up, we have to sort out his parent's home. He's driven ahead by car, we are taking the train, as there is this wonderful thing called a "Happy Weekend Ticket" that lets up to 5 people travel for the price of one if they take only local regional trains. It is actually only 30 minutes longer than the high-speed train, as you have to take quite a detour.
Of course, the German Bahn is completely surprised that so many people want to take the train today - and even take their bikes. There are crowds of people on the platforms, and it takes forever to get on and off the train. We luckily got on at a smaller station just before the main train station, so we have good seats for the first leg.
Of course, the train is so delayed that we have to wait an hour in beautiful Bad Kleinen. WiseKid pipes up - hey, that's cool, we can go to McDonald's. I try and explain that even though the wall came down before he was born, nothing much has happened here in the way of modernization. I enclose a picture of what at one time was a place for the stationmaster to wait.
Anyway, just before Bad Kleinen a bunch of 14- and 15-year-old boys join the car. One bangs into WiseKid with his bag, and they start talking with each other in the way that WiseKid himself used to speak just a few years ago. He gets seriously angry at these stupid kids, calling them wannabes. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black ;)
Anyway, the train for the second leg is on time, but no place to sit together, so they are in the row behind me. And they are playing "Stadt, Land, Fluß". I vaguely remember us having something similar when I was a kid, but I've forgotten the name. They choose categories and letters and have to find an item for each category for each letter. WiseKid chose the category "Car" for her. She got mad, so that had to be changed. She chose "Body of water" for him, and I expected him to reject it.
But no, he has it in, and is coming up with the most amazing bodies of waters, regions, animals, and jobs: Küstengewässer (costal waterways); Lake Caucausus; Lake Génève; Andalusia; Westerland; Kolibri; Bundespräsident (German head of state) - WiseKidGirlfriend protests: That's not a job! Sure it is, he rejoins. He gets paid, doesn't he? This is a guy who quit school after the 9th grade! I'm really rather enjoying sitting in front of them and hearing the words they choose - and fight over whether they exist. "Chemnitzsee" - there is probably a Lake X for all city names X. And without the Internet we can't check it out.
I'm glad WiseKidGirlFriend is along - otherwise I would probably have had to listen to "are we there yet?" about a hundred times.
Update: Chemnitz is not a member of the set of all cities for which there exist a "Lake"+city. WiseKid got a point he shouldn't have.