Clueless in Cologne
Verirrt und kölschbesoffen in Köln

A spectre is haunting parts of the West Bank of the Rhine River, a ghost of sorts. As is the habit of ghosts conversing with phantoms, it whispers in a decembery, blood-curlingly icysortofy tone of voice: “Heisenberg … oh Heisenberg … wherest arst thou … oh Heisenberg … ooohoo“

Thing is, I actually turned up at the Dec 6-7 Cologne Christmassy Eurotrash Nodermeet. Sure, some fat chance, you might be compelled to laugh out loud – not being able to contact Heisenberg through the only known channel -- E2 /msg, not even knowing what Heisenberg looks like (and vice versa), not having a clue where to meet whom, when or why. But well, I had already booked a most reasonable Ryanair roundtrip from Stockholm, so – what the hell – Cologne might still be worth a mass, I thought, whether I found the nodermeeting or not. (It sure was, and yes -- I sure didn’t).

Heisenberg had told me some time earlier on the catbox that the Crowne Plaza bar in central Cologne would probably be a place worth visiting. So I went to the Crowne Plaza bar (which turned out to have tripled its existence, into 3 bars instead of just one), leaving behind cryptic messages “from montecarlo to Heisenberg (complete with a mobile number)” everywhere, a habit that quickly made me the most suspicious-looking individual in town since Mohammed Atta. (By the way, none of the Crowne Plaza bars did make much of a dent on me, but a bar called Brveghel, just a block or so away, was truly impressive and as lively as they come.)

Well, the town was very nice, the weather reasonable, the Dom (= Cathedral) impressive, the Ludwig Museum interesting, the Christmas markets crowded, the natives most friendly, the kölsch most drinkable, the Rhine quite undrinkably peaceful, so – what the heck, I had a good time, for a haunting ghost!

Thanks for your nice initiative anyway, dear Heisenberg!